We recently had an amazing opportunity to spend a weekend devoted to nurturing our marriage. During this weekend, we had no phones, no television, no children… only the two of us with clear, intentional effort to concentrate on how we can strengthen our connection and deepen our love.
Prior to this weekend, if you had asked either of us, we would have said we have a good marriage. We still believe that to have been true. However, we needed this experience and we didn’t even realize it. Here’s why.
That weekend, called Marriage Encounter, was a time for us to gain some extremely valuable tools designed to enrich our marriage and grow us together in ways we didn’t realize were possible. At the core of the work we did that weekend were exercises designed to build intimacy and improve communication. We were taught how to listen with not just our ears, but also our hearts, and how to see our spouse through a new lens.
One of the main tools we have implemented since the weekend is the Love Note. Since our Marriage Encounter weekend, we’ve been writing (almost) daily love notes to one another to express our deepest, most intimate thoughts and feelings. It’s stretching us beyond our perceived limits of vulnerability and has brought us so much closer together. Writing our thoughts and feelings allows us to express our complete thoughts without interruption and gives the receiver the opportunity to receive the content and consider the feelings behind the thought, as well.
As we continue to practice use of this tool to strengthen our marriage, we wanted to offer encouragement to you to never give up on trying to connect with your spouse. If it’s something that you’re not accustomed to, it may feel uncomfortable for a while, as it takes a lot of trust and vulnerability. We’ve found that it’s almost like a muscle that has to be exercised. But we are finding that it’s so worth it.
So don’t overthink it. Start off small. Send your spouse a text message today. Need help getting started? Keep it simple. Tell him/her one reason you’re thankful for him/her, and then offer a one sentence prayer for them.
Dear Terence, I’m so thankful for the way you intentionally bring a smile to my face each day. I pray that your day in the pharmacy is one that allows you to be a blessing to all that you encounter.
With Love, Eardie
Tell us about your "secret sauce" for meaningful, vulnerable communication. What tools do you use to deepen your connection? Share here!