Help your marriage thrive.
When you’re worried that your marriage is falling apart, or don’t know how to fix your broken relationship, then it’s easy to feel dismayed.
But in order to have a healthy relationship filled with the love and passion you want, sometimes you need to look for inspirational words.
Let’s face it: Relationships are hard work. You may be at a point where your marriage is suffering, or you’re in a rut.
Same routine, different day.
You may be asking yourself, “What happened to us, or how did we get here?”
Here are 13 inspirational quotes to help you save your broken marriage.
1. “Always strive to give your spouse the very best of yourself, not what’s leftover after you gave your best to everyone else.” — Dave Willis
If you’re in a bad mood, you may not see things as they truly are. You’ll be much more prone to argue.
Be the partner you wish to have.
2. “When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.” — Wayne Dyer
If you want good behavior to continue, you have to reward it consistently.
Have you been noting the negative and not noticing even the smallest contributions from your partner? Compliment, acknowledge, and praise them more, and don’t forget to say “thank you.”
My spouse doesn’t clean the entire kitchen as I would, but he washes the dishes. If I always focus on what he doesn’t do, he will learn to tell himself nothing he does is ever good enough. And guess what? He will stop doing it. Period.
This is not ideal when trying to save a marriage.
3. “If you change nothing, nothing will change.” — Anonymous
You can decide to maintain the status quo but expect (and accept) that nothing will change.
Telling your partner you felt hurt or disappointed that they didn’t follow through will probably resonate more than saying, “you’re such a jerk.”
Over-communication and over-clarification can change the narrative. However helpful clarifying you can be, a more powerful tool for resolving conflict is listening to what’s really being said and working towards mutual understanding.
Take a moment to reflect on the root cause of your arguments.
What emotion are you feeling? Did you have an expectation that wasn’t met? Are different values placed on different activities?
And with this, focus on what you can control.
You cannot control your partner. And your partner is not you, so he or she will not place the same importance on thing as you do.
Nagging your partner to do things isn’t sustainable and doesn’t create change. Working towards understanding what is causing you to want to start an argument over everyday issues can provide insight that may help your partner adjust to meet the need.
4. “No one can dance with a partner and not touch each other’s raw spots. We must know what these sensitive, raw spots are and be able to speak about them in a way that pulls our partner closer to us.” ― Sue Johnson
I grew up with parents who yelled a lot. When my spouse would raise his voice in frustration, I felt like that little kid again, just wishing I could hide.
After heated arguments, I chose to shut down and not talk to my spouse for days, just as my parents did.
It’s a terrifying feeling, and I’ve learned to share this vulnerable part of myself with my spouse. When we know each other’s tender spots, we are more sensitive and compassionate toward each other.
According to Brené Brown, researcher and author of “Daring Greatly,” vulnerability is sharing on an emotional level that feels risky because it exposes the true you, without armor. Vulnerability doesn’t come easy, but it’s the key to connection, love, and a sense of belonging.
If vulnerability “isn’t your thing,” I highly recommend reading her books if you want to become close to your partner and save your marriage.
5. “Don’t argue about other people’s weaknesses. Don’t argue for your own. When you make a mistake, admit it, correct it, and learn from it immediately.” — Stephen Covey
I don’t know about you, but when my spouse tells me he’s genuinely sorry, I respect him more.
I can say the apology is heartfelt and that he thought about his actions. Not everyone can do this.
We both grew up with parents who did not apologize when they hurt us, and we take apologies very seriously.
Put your pride aside, and if you raised your voice, slammed the door, or hung up on your spouse, say you’re sorry. It will go a long way, as long as you make every effort not to repeat it.
6. “A humble person is more concerned about what is right than about being right.” — Stephen Covey
Stop reading for a moment and ask yourself this: Do you want to be kind, or do you want to be right?
So often, couples come to counseling to receive confirmation that they were right and their partner was wrong.
There are apparent offenses, such as swearing at your partner, physical abuse, making a significant decision without consulting your partner, and infidelity, where inarguably, these were poor choices.
However, most of the time, couples just arrive bickering, angry, and ready to state their case for the jury (me) to hand them a verdict — without apparent offenses. Why is it essential for you to be right, and why is it necessary for your partner to agree with you?
Yes, it can feel validating in the moment to be declared the winner, but that validation is temporary and comes at a cost.
Instead of fighting to be right, put that effort into finding common ground, recognize the positive interactions, and use confirming messages during conflict.
7. “The greatest thing you can do for your children is to love your spouse.” — Stephen Covey
Your kids are watching every move you make. The statement, “Do as I say, not as I do,” doesn’t carry much validity if you’re always contradicting yourself.
Adult clients can recall moments when their parents fought as young as three years old.
Your behavior toward your spouse is showing them how they should be treated (or treat others) and influences the partners they choose in the future.
8. “The worst distance between two people is misunderstanding.” — Unknown
False assumptions typically drive misunderstandings.
Before you disagree with your partner, you may want to understand how they came up with a particular idea or why they are feeling a certain way. You may be surprised by what you discover, and it can save you a lot of grief in the end.
Nothing helps diffuse a heated conversation better than when we feel heard and validated.
9. “Listen with the intent to understand, not the intent to reply.” — Stephen Covey
Your response has the power to move you closer to each other or increase the distance between you.
If you are more concerned with defending yourself, the conversation suddenly becomes about you and completely misses what your partner is trying to tell you.
Stop interrupting and start listening more.
10. “The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.” — Stephen Covey
You may get wrapped up in work, managing the household, kids, and daily routines that affect the quality of your relationship.
It’s common for couples to say it’s been months or years since they went away together.
What are the things you used to love to do together? Do you need to find reliable childcare?
How about an overnight stay at a hotel every few months? How about a weekly coffee date?
It’s not too late to recalibrate and create better habits.
Quality time is connecting, valuing, and enjoying time spent together. It’s making your partner a priority and essential for the little bit of time you have at that moment.
What you value is what you will nurture.
11. “You don’t have to be interesting. You have to be interested.” — John Gottman
How often do you check in with each other? How often do you ask what is stressing you?
How are we doing, how is that work project coming along? What can I take off your plate? What is it that you need right now from me?
What signals are you sending your partner when you don’t take the time to have an actual conversation with them? Or when you turn away from them and towards your phone or the television. You dehumanize them.
Martin Buber, a philosopher and Nobel Prize nominee, wrote about the differences between “I-it” relationships and “I-you” relationships. I-it relationships dehumanize people by treating them like objects. I-you relationships are described by empathy and connection.
Humans are social creatures and we need connection. Being uninterested and uninvested in your partner screams that they don’t matter. And in so, your partner may treat you the same.
12. “We repeat what we don’t repair.” — John Gottman
If you think brushing things under the rug will provide closure or make conflict disappear, your next fight is just around the corner.
Avoidance leads to resentment, anger, and loneliness. Avoiding and repairing only pollutes the relationship further.
To get your relationship back on track and save a marriage, repair attempts are critical.
13. “Make it your goal to create a marriage that feels like the safest place on earth.” — Greg Smalley
When you feel secure and satisfied in a relationship, you can learn to overlook minor infractions.
In particular, if you can access positive moments in your relationship, you may not stay too mad if the dishes weren’t done today.