Marriage can become, but shouldn’t be, boring. Your wife wants you to rescue her and she needs you to be her hero. She also needs you to make her and your relationship your top priority. Remember, you can’t have a strong family without a strong marriage and you won’t have a strong marriage without intentionally focusing on your relationship. The 30 Day Marriage challenge is about reconnecting as husband and wife, focusing on your relationship and building a stronger marriage.
For the next 30 days, these three ground rules will be the basis of your relationship with your wife:
You can't say anything negative about your wife . . . to your wife . . . or to anyone else about your wife.
Say something that you admire or appreciate about your wife . . . to your wife . . . or to someone else about your wife every day.
If you believe in God on any level, commit to praying for your wife and for your relationship (that’s two things) every day for the next 30 days. Don’t skip this; it’s more important than you may think.
Day 1 Write in your couple’s therapy homework book one way your life is better because of your wife. Do this every day for the next 30 days. Start now and commit yourself to doing this every day. At the end of 30 days write these in a card and give it to your wife. Tell her how grateful you are that she agreed to marry you.
Day 2 Talk to your wife about taking the “21 day 15 second Kiss Challenge”. Starting today and every day for the next 21 days agree to kiss for 15 seconds. Just a 15 second kiss that’s all, but NOT less than 15 seconds. Kissing is intimate; it’s nearly impossible to kiss without feeling closer. Physical intimacy builds emotional intimacy. Take turns putting a red X on the calendar noting that was a 15 second kiss day. If that’s not acceptable to your spouse, for whatever reasons, try a 15 second hug challenge and if that is still too intimate at this point try a 15 second hand holding challenge. DON’T skip this one.
Day 3 Today’s assignment for encouraging your wife is to do something fun together today that will make you forget the cares of the world. Some suggestions are - Ask your wife to join you outside to play Frisbee or go for a walk or look at the stars. Whisk her away for coffee, a drive in the country or to a beach and watch the sunset. Or do something together that you enjoyed when you were dating. Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 4 Tell your wife how much you appreciate her and all that she does for you and for your family. Ask her what she needs help with the most today. Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 5 Todays’ encouragement challenge is to surprise your wife with something – flowers or something as simple as her favorite candy or the latest book from her favourite author. It doesn’t have to be a big thing; it just has to say, “I was thinking of you. I love you. And I thought you would like this.” Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 6 Tell your wife today that you are glad you married her, that you would marry her all over again, and that you will keep your vows made before God and man on your wedding day. Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 7 Your challenge today is to be silent when could return insult for insult or when you could say, “I told you so.” Or if that doesn’t happen today, keep it in your pocket and remember to be silent the next time. Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 8 Today’s task is simple, but oh so important. Tell your wife that you love her. Tell her one reason she makes you a better man. Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 9 Put at least one date night on your calendar this month. You plan it and keep it at all costs Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 10 Today’s challenge is to truly listen to your wife. When you are together, do not turn on the TV or the computer, get out of the house together if you must, but give your full attention to your wife and what she has to say. Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 11 Today’s challenge is to say “yes” to your wife more times than you say “no.” Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 12 Kiss your wife unexpectedly today. Walk up behind her when she is doing dishes, wrap your arms around her waist and kiss her on the back of the neck or the cheek. When she is walking by you, take her hand, draw her into you and kiss her boldly – it doesn't matter who is watching. Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 13 Today’s challenge is to go on a date with your wife. Call her, email her, send a text message, or slip a note in her purse to set it up. Pick some place you know she’d like or a new place for the two of you to explore together. Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 14 We often unconsciously divide up household chores and without ever discussing it both of you have duties that have become your job. Taking out the trash, making the next morning’s coffee, emptying the dishwasher are part of the routines. Shake things up by beating your wife to that mundane task that is on her unofficial roster. Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 15 Find an opportunity to give your wife a hug today; a real solid hug that last 3-5 minutes. Just hold her tight through any awkwardness. At some point, tell her “I love you and I can’t imagine my life without you.” Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 16 Ask your wife about how her job is going (about her day) and listen without interrupting or giving advice. Encourage her to keep going if she stops. Be prepared to listen intently for as long as she is willing to talk. Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 17 If at all possible, try to initiate sex with your wife today (in a way that honours her). An hour or so afterward, tell her how much you love your relationship with her. If there is something special she knows about you and how she is able to rock your world, let her know. Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 18 Ask for her advice about something you’re thinking about, personal or work. Don’t shoot it down or list 101 ways her advice won’t work. Listen and talk through it with respect. Thank her for her help. Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 19 Today’s challenge is to let go of expectations. Unhappiness (despondency, sadness, misery, and suffering) lies in the gap between expectation and reality. Let go of expectations today. If something didn’t go the way you wanted it – let it go. Focus on appreciating what is/what you have rather than on what is not/what you don’t have. Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 20 Ask your wife about her job is going (about her day – if she does not work outside of the home). Ask her what the most challenging part is and ask if there is anything you could do to help make things easier for her. Commit to doing at least one or all of the things she identifies. Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 21 Demonstrate your love by willingly choosing to give in to an area of disagreement between you and your wife. Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge Day
Day 22 This is the last day of the “21 day 15 second Kiss/Hug/Handhold Challenge”. Ask your wife to continue the challenge for another 21 days and see if you can step it up if you used hugs or held hands!
Day 23 Ask your wife to teach you something. For example how to cook something and spend the time making it together. Tell her you’ll do the clean-up as a thank you.
Day 24 Purposefully neglect an activity you would normally do (or would typically never give up) and spend the extra time with your wife.
Day 25 If you have a disagreement today (or the next time you have a disagreement), be the first person to reach out.
Day 26 Encourage your wife today. Be her cheerleader!
Day 27 Write a note to your wife today telling her why you think she is beautiful. Spare no detail.
Day 28 Do something big for your wife today; like clean her car, do all of the routine housework, clean your bathroom top to bottom, etc.
Day 29 Rejoice in the differences that make your marriage work. Make time for you and your wife to talk. Ask your wife how she sees the strengths and weaknesses that you each have working together. Talk about how you and your marriage are stronger because she is your helper who completes you.
Day 30 It’s time again to have some fun and make playing together an integral part of your marriage. Get outside, ride a bike, go out for ice cream, put together a puzzle, play a game. Find something that both you and your wife enjoy doing and take time to do it together.