All you need are 2 words for a better marriage

If you venture far into the blogosphere, you’ll be inundated with all types of “do this and your life/business/family/home/marriage will be awesome” speak. Especially if you visit some of the larger blogs on self-development and improvement.

I’ve got no issue with people wanting to share their thoughts on how to make life better. After all, that’s why we frequent these sites.

But do we make things more complicated than they need to be?

What if two words could improve your marriage?

Two words can…and will.

  1. Grow up. (this is what marriage is all about!)
  2. Just breathe. (enjoy this moment in life, they’re too fleeting to waste)
  3. Think big. (look at the big picture of life and marriage, it’s not all about you)
  4. Get over. (forgive again and again)
  5. Choose battles. (not everything is worth the fight)
  6. Just stop. (get help if you need)
  7. Shut up. (there’s wisdom in knowing when to be quiet)
  8. Move on. (let go of the past and live in the moment)
  9. Be smart. (use your brain in every situation)
  10. Common sense. (uh, hello, befriending an ex-girlfriend on Facebook is just plain stupid)
  11. Show up. (there’s value to being together)
  12. Be present. (engage your spouse when you’re together, don’t be lost at work or elsewhere)
  13. Just love. (make every day a competition on who can love the other better)
  14. Get naked. (don’t forget to be physical with each other)
  15. I’m listening. (listen to what your spouse says and let them know you are hearing it clearly, don’t just wait for them to finish talking so you can argue your side)
  16. Forgive me. (which is different and far more humbling than “I’m sorry”)
  17. Play together. (don’t be so serious all the time, play games, sports, goof off, laugh)
  18. Pray together. (constantly)
  19. Thank you. (two very sexy words in a marriage!)
  20. I’m here. (through thick and thin, good and bad, no matter what!)

What are your two words? Add them in the comments.

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Corey writes regularly about marriage and relationships on his site, Simple Marriage, which is full of laid back information sure to improve your relationships.You can also catch his radio show - Sexy Marriage Radio, a weekly show filled with straightforward and practical information that will help your marriage.

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    It always works… 🙂

  2. Ha, I just wrote about this for our 13th anniversary. I feel like ours is “don’t quit” but I’ll take laugh, pray and play together, too. 🙂

  3. Read together – (we did this pre-kids and are reading books together now, 4 kids later. It’s another bonding thing and keeps couples talking.)

    Surprise him/Surprise her – (unexpected gifts, dates, compliments = sure to please)

    Stay honest – (avoid unnecessary miscommunication)

  4. You rock
    My dear
    Stay-cation 🙂

  5. My two words?

    “I’m responsible”

    I’m responsible for my thoughts and actions and feelings. I’m blessed and honored my husband chose me, and I’m responsible for him not regretting that choice! I’m responsible for being and remaining lovable. Luckily, I married someone who is also a responsible kind of a guy…

  6. “Add friends” and “Ditch jealousy”. 🙂
    A social life together is so important, to get to see each other from different angles, connecting with other people and getting other perspectives on life, instead of only being caught up in the twosomeness of it all.

  7. My best. When my son was little, he used best instead of favorite and we immediately began using it for each other. My husband is my best. I give him my best.

  8. Work hard. Be willing to work hard to strengthen our marriage.

  9. What a great post. I like laugh together. It’s amazing how we get so lost in the day to day of life – our jobs, kids, routine – that sometimes we forgot to slow down, take a break and enjoy each other.

  10. This is such a great list! I wasn’t sure that I could add anything, but I did think of one:
    Cheer on. (Encourage one another!)

  11. “But do we make things more complicated than they need to be?”
    Yep. I read some of the larger self-help blogs, too, but I believe that we can largely strip away all the analyzing and philosophizing because, at the end of the day, most of that stuff DOES overcomplicate things and can even lead us astray. Why do we tend to make things harder for ourselves? I am guilty of this plenty. Thanks for the reminder.

  12. Lori C. says:

    No Conditions!

    We love, give, & share unconditionally. Our marriage is a “safe place” for us to just be ourselves, without fear of judgement or condemnation. We have both had previous marriages, and we both made mistakes in the past, but we both want to be together more than we want to “win” any argument, so, no conditions. (Conversly, no conditions, extends to our own actions, as in: there are no conditions in which it is okay to break my vows/promises or intentionally do something that would hurt my spouse or his/her ability to trust me without condition)

  13. Christine says:

    Good Job. (Because it’s always good to give recognition for all the hard work we do around the house.)

  14. Welcome home!
    I am a stay at home, homeschooling mom. After a long day with the kids, it’s easy for me to just keep on doing what I’m doing when my husband gets home from work and let him take over with the kids. I know he appreciates a nice “greeting” when he gets home, especially from his wife.

  15. “I understand.”

    I think it’s very important to validate your spouse’s feelings and thoughts. In order to be understood, first you must seek to understand.

  16. Love this! I would also add “Serve Well.” I had a rough time until I chose to serve my husband in spite of what he did for me. It’s improved our marriage immensely in both directions!

  17. Trade Places.
    Practice Empathy.
    It’s challenging when you’re upset, but looking at a situation from the other person’s perspective can be healing.

  18. You’re hot.
    Love you.
    Hi baby.
    Don’t complain.
    Love notes.

    My husband’s love language is verbal affirmation so he needs to hear me say how I feel about him often. We also try to avoid complaining often to one another. Save the negative talk for friends and leave all the positive talk for our marriage.

    Play together is a big one I’m still working on with my spouse and daughter. I understand the importance of play. But sometimes I just get overwhelmed in all the seriousness of family life. I got to lighten up.

    Thanks for the simple tips!

  19. Hug often. When my husband gets home, I make a point of stopping everything and just holding him for a good, long minute. It reconnects us, and I can literally feel my stress draining as we stand there. We don’t limit hugs to that time, though. We each reach out to give/get a hug when the other walks through the room, when the tension in the house gets too much, when one of us is going to bed before the other… whenever. It’s a signal that we’re in this together, no matter what, and that our connection to each other is the most important thing to both of us.

  20. MichelleH says:

    ‘I’m sorry’….use them when needed, accept them when given.
    ‘for always’…our marriage is not ‘for now’ it’s ‘for always’
    ‘God’s here’….our marriage has three in it. Put God first, the rest will fall in place.

  21. Give 100% (as opposed to worrying about 50/50 and what’s fair)
    Work hard (Steph’s got it right)

    All great words – easier said than done. A work in process.

  22. Other first. If you are both putting each other’s needs first, everyone’s needs get met and you both feel valued, appreciated and supported.

  23. Extend grace. Works for all relationships.

  24. Be nice AND Calm down. Words to live by.

  25. Compromise and listen. After 6 years of marriage, these two words are what keep us together.

  26. LORD JESUS. We both call on our dear Lord, when we don’t know what to say or even how to pray, we just breathe His name and He enters into the situation, becoming our WAY to handle anything.

  27. Being together. Simply being together in the same room/place/house is a date in itself! Our life together requires at times for us to be many miles, many hours and many countries apart from each other. Going on 19yrs of marriage, we are either separated by distance on our individual birthdays or our wedding anniversary. So being together is just wonderful! Even just being at home!

  28. Alyssa M. says:

    Hold me. In the middle of an argument, when it feels like your worlds apart, say these words and call a time out or truce.

  29. “Love you!” I don’t think I saw these two words together in the post or the comments.
    Sure, “I” can be added to the two words. But…speaking and hearing those two words is everything. My husband and I never part or end a conversation (well almost never) without saying, “Love you!” or “I love you!”
    How many times have I heard friends talk with their spouse on the phone and conclude with a simple, “Bye.” It makes me cringe.
    Some days are tough. And maybe I don’t feel like I love my husband at that moment. But, when he leaves, calls, etc., the convo ends with, “Love you!” It’s a huge reinforcer for staying faithful and true.

    Great post!! I’m planning on sharing it with my husband. It will be fun to come up with some more meaningful “two words.”

  30. Hmm… I have to say that I hugely disagree with the brackets on point 10. Being friends with your ex is the exact kind of quality that makes a great partner! It doesn’t make sense to be with someone who isn’t on speaking terms with girls he’s dated. It would make me wonder what awful thing he had done wrong!

    My two words? “Same team”. We spend so much of our lives battling something, that some little niggle with our spouse can just seem like one of those things. Taking a moment to remember you’re on the same side, fighting for the same things in life, is a precious gift. I find it rewarms my heart, and opens my eyes to his point of view so much more easily.

  31. Be honest. – Always. Even when it hurts.
    No ‘shoulds.’ – Shoulds are judgments.
    No shame. – Marriage should be a “no shame zone.”
    Date again. – Go on dates, rediscover why you fell in love.
    Embrace conflict. – for me, a super conflict avoider, it was necessary to learn that avoiding conflict causes more pain than facing it and embracing it as a means for growth and greater intimacy.

  32. Susan E says:

    Wow! Who knew so many two words could be applicable?! I’d add:
    Be vulnerable. (be willing to admit you’re not always right and to ask for help when you need it)
    Thanks for the great post!

  33. Sounds good.

    Don’t fight over everything, especially when it doesn’t matter. When I started just saying “sounds good” it made all the difference in the world.

  34. These are great. Don’t know that I could add anything to it. FYI, I’m totally printing this out and posting on my cork board.

  35. Quality Time. 🙂

  36. so many great word….read them all, will need to read them again.
    For us: Keep talking
    On the phone or in person, talking voice to voice keeps us connected throughout the day.

  37. Great post, thanks! I could really work on some of these.

    Although I would add that in many relationships, the Facebook limitations are unnecessary. My husband is facebook friends with three of his ex-girlfriends, felt no need to inform me of this fact, and I didn’t care when I eventually noticed. For us, this seems like common sense, as they’re all very nice women who have moved on, just as my husband has. Heck, I think I’m facebook friends with one of them. (Heh, I just checked, and I’m actually only friends with her husband. How’s that for irony?)

  38. Amira Nabil says:

    Rise above
    Never give-up
    Believe in fate
    Have fun
    Love-yourself .. so you can love others as well :))

    Thank you for the article, very inspiring 🙂

  39. Amira Nabil says:

    Rise above
    Never give-up
    Believe in fate
    . . .
    Love yourself . . . so you will be able to give back

    Thank you for the lovely article, very inspiring :))

  40. Sara Williams says:

    I would add cook together. At least once in a while I like it when my husband helps in the kitchen.

  41. Vacation together.
    Sometimes it is important to spend time away from the rest of the family and just have a “honeymoon” without the kids.

  42. Dinner together.

    I would say having dinner together every night is important. It gives you the chance to talk about your workday and upcoming events. It is like a mini pow-wow meeting for the marriage to make sure everyone is on the same page.

  43. I NEED.
    Don’t just expect them to know. Share with husband if you need something from him.

  44. love fiercely.

  45. I love the two words. Every two words has meaningful meaning. It is so great to read them.

  46. My 2 words I’m blessed
    I’m blessed to have such a loving wife and beautiful family to love me.
    I look at my wife and think I’m not always a picnic to live with and she still loves me. I am so lucky.

    ps all the other words help too.

  47. For-ever… when you view marriage as a life long relationship, it changes how you behave.

  48. Trust him (he is a big boy and can figure things out on his own!)
    Laugh together (make fun of yourselves often!)

  49. My two words, hmmm….
    Don’t criticize
    Show love
    Team work
    Big kisses

  50. So many good ones in the post and in the comments. I could add “choose humility.” It manifests in all different ways- apologizing first, forgiving, serving joyfully, following Jesus. This is a great post!

  51. I enjoy reading these two words. They are so meaningful.

  52. “yes dear” 😉

  53. could add “choose humility.” It manifests in all different ways- apologizing first, forgiving, serving joyfully, following Jesus. This is a great post!

  54. I always flash back to that first hug when I knew he was the one.

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