One of the first things that drew me to my husband was his sense of humor. The guy was a blast to be with. I never laughed so much in my life. But the longer we were married, the more kids we had and the more pressures we experienced leading a large church, the more our serious adult responsibilities seemed to be squeezing the fun out of us.
We still had our lighter moments, but that constant, easy, light-hearted laughter that had once been a staple of our relationship kept getting harder and harder to come by. Maybe you can relate.
Research from the University of Denver supports a high correlation between fun and marital happiness.
They found the amount of fun couples have together was the strongest factor in overall marital happiness.
Another study by colleagues at State University of New York-Stoney Brook showed that sharing new and exciting activities consistently contributes to better relationships. They found that people in happy relationships plan fun activities and that fun keeps the relationship strong and fresh.
We get how easy it is to slip into a rut doing the same things, going to the same places but over time that sucks the life out of a vibrant relationship.
If your marriage feels challenging at the moment fun might seem like the last thing you want to do, but according to William Glasser, MD it’s the best and easiest way to get your love back on track. He says,
Why do so many people who enjoy fun
in other areas find so little fun in marriage?
There is no greater obstacle to having fun in marriage than
criticizing, blaming, controlling or complaining.
Fun is actually part of a genetic drive
that is easy and enjoyable to satisfy
but almost all unhappy couples ignore what
could easily help them more than anything else.
Here are 50 ways to increase your “couple fun” and build a stronger, lasting bond:
1) Ask your spouse what “fun” feels and looks like to them right now. ( If their answer doesn’t include you follow it up with “what might having fun together look like?”
2) Think about this: Would your spouse say you are a fun person to be with? What can you do today to increase your own fun-to-be-with factor?
3) Decide to be ” the fun spouse” -the one to initiate more laughter in your relationship.
4) Agree to share in at least two 30 minute, light and pleasurable moments each week.
5) Brainstorm fun activities you both get equal pleasure from.
6) Try something that is both fun and new. Novelty brings new energy to your relationship.
7) Take dance lessons or watch a salsa video and dance in your living room
8) Take up a new sport like golf or paddle boarding
This is a guest post from Caron Loveless who, along with her husband David, started Live True, an organization that helps leaders who want to live, love, and lead from a healthier soul.