Hello, hello OSSS readers! It’s Brooke from Blissful Roots. I am no where near an expert on parenting or marriage! I know there are many of you out there who are. But, the more I got thinking, the more I realized how much I have appreciated the simple tips, advice, and guidance given to me over the years from everyday mothers and wives. And that is what I feel I can offer you. A few of the lessons learned over my 20 years of marriage, and almost 15 years of parenting. It’s a form of gratitude journal, but tailored to showing love for your spouse. It’s guaranteed to help you feel more grateful for your partner, and it makes a super thoughtful gift!
How to Be More Grateful for Your Partner
So, a few years ago I found myself being a bit too nit picky with my husband day in and day out. I realized I needed to change, and stop acting like a nagging mother. I needed a reason to find the good. And let me tell you, there are thousands of really great things about my husband, but I was so busy focusing on the few things that bothered me, that I was missing all of his wonderful qualities, kind gestures, and efforts made. I decided to start a daily journal (I’m a big journal junkie) for him. Somewhat of a gratitude journal, which I’m sure you’re all familiar with, but focusing strictly on my husband each day. I wanted to make it simple, and not too time consuming or overwhelming. I bought a small notebook, kept it by my bedside, and started writing one positive thing about my husband each night before I went to bed.
Reasons I’m Grateful for You Ideas
Ideally, you are focusing on something you’re thankful for on each specific day of the year. Doing it that way really helps you think past the generic, cliche, or obvious. Like, you may be thankful that your husband is smart, but on July 28th (or, whatever!) you’re thankful that your husband was able to figure out the car issues using YouTube. It saved you lots of time and money! Or, maybe your husband is a super great dad. That’s awesome and something he would love to hear. But to be more specific, maybe on September 9th, after an exhausting day at work, he couldn’t bring himself to turn the kids away when they wanted to go on a family bike ride. See what I mean?? Focusing on the DAY, help you get more specific and really, REALLY notice the little details about the amazing things your partner does. Plus, if you give the finished gratitude journal to him/her as a gift, it will be fun for your spouse to realize all of the positive little things you’ve noticed. Their efforts haven’t gone unnoticed!!
I came to love those few minutes each night reflecting on what my husband had done that day. I loved writing something each day because so many of the small, simple acts of goodness go unnoticed, or even big acts of kindness can go unforgotten if not written down.
A few more examples of getting specific:
- I knew you were so tired this morning, after a hard day yesterday. I’m so thankful and admire your willingness to get up early, yet again, to provide for our family.
- I’m so thankful that you grew a beard and keep it around, just for me. I love it.
- Today I loved how when we were deciding what movie to watch, you went with my girly drama over the science fiction show, that I know you would have rather watched.
- I’m so thankful you took the time to call me during your lunch break today.
- Today, I loved how intently you were listening to our son tell you all about the house he built on Minecraft. I know that you’re not super interested in that stuff, but it was fun to see you intentionally showing your love and interest to our sweet boy.
- I love that you never expect dinner when you get home. It’s a huge relief off my shoulders, as I have lots on my plate too, and it makes it more fun, when I do make dinner.
- Thank you for scratching my back this morning. Best way to wake up!!
Best Tip for Making a Gratitude Journal for Your Partner
I made sure to limit myself to one or two sentences a night, just to keep it simple. Some nights, I had several things I could have written about him. Other nights, I had to think kind of hard! But looking back, I liked those nights the best because it made me dig a bit and realize even on our hardest days, there was always something good he did! Maybe even just thanking him for not snoring at night, or for showering every day and smelling good!! And I promise, the more you look for the good in your spouse, the more you see it’s there EVERY SINGLE DAY! And the more you see it, the more you’ll appreciate it, and hopefully express your gratitude more. You’ll also discover, it’s kind of contagious! Your spouse will probably end up doing the same. Maybe he (or she) won’t put it in writing, but the overall feeling of love and appreciation will grow between you.
To reiterate: KEEP IT SIMPLE.
I did make it an entire year, and I gave the journal to my husband on his birthday the following year. I think he kind of knew what I’d been doing all year, but he hadn’t been able to read the journal until that day. I remember him sitting down and reading page after page after page. It was a good walk down memory lane for him, but more than that, it was a year full of positive, loving comments all for him!
What you focus on EXPANDS.
I have a favorite quote that I pretty much repeat to myself on a daily basis, especially when it comes to my marriage (and parenting as well). You’ve probably heard something similar to this before, but I believe in this quote 110%, and I have seen the tremendous impact it can have. The positive impact when you choose to focus on the good, and the reverse, is also true.
What do you do to express your love and appreciation for your spouse? How do you keep the good in your marriage in the forefront? I know there are many of you out there with great ideas! I’d love to hear them. I do have to say texting can be a great way to do this same idea in this techie world of ours. I’m not quite sure I love it as much as the journal, but at least it’s something!
If You Liked This Post on Spouse Appreciation, Check Out:
- What Is Love? And Inspirational Series Part 1 // Part 2 // Part 3 // Part 4
- Fun Date Ideas to Amp Up Your Marriage
- Why Charity in Marriage is Essential