7 Honest Ways You Can Love Your Husband A Heck Of A Lot Better

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Ever wonder why you're unhappy in your marriage? Have you tried and tried to tell your husband to change? Maybe you're doing things all wrong. Truth is, maybe it's YOU who need to make some changes. If you take a step back and learn to love him better, he’ll respond in ways you didn’t think possible. These are important tools every woman needs to fully support herself and her husband in the most intimate of partnerships. What you don’t know can be harmful to your marriage.

Here are a few tips to up his relationship satisfaction (and yours too!):

1. Love YOURSELF better, first.

You probably weren’t taught that it's crucial for a woman to find her own measure of personal happiness through self-love before launching into loving a man full time. We’ve all heard plenty about how to keep him happy, but this advice is actually backwards.

Make taking care of yourself non-negotiable — and he’ll love you for it. It’s not enough to say the words, you'll actually have to really love yourself enough to set healthy boundaries and take care of yourself physically, emotionally, spiritually and financially. You are priority number one!

2. Don’t say everything you think.

Being a strong, powerful and confident woman doesn’t mean you always have to say what you’re thinking in the moment. Taking a step back rather than responding in anger works really well for job preservation and marriage, so why is it we often don’t stop ourselves from blurting out harsh or angry responses to our spouses?  Could it be a bad habit reinforced by the notion we get to be fully ourselves with them

Grown-up lovers know the benefits of taking a breath and thinking through how to respond before it’s too late.

3. Don’t take his mood swings personally.

Spousal mood swings aren’t usually about us.  Just because he’s not talking or behaving like he’s upset about something doesn’t mean you should assume it’s personal. Stop for a minute and check your natural inclination to think negatively in the absence of information. Instead, open the lines of communication and create a safe environment for him to share what’s up. If he’s not ready to talk, accept that and move on to doing what makes you happy. Remember: Emotions are contagious. Maybe he’ll catch your more upbeat mood.

4. Schedule sex (seriously, it's OK).

Grown-ups have super busy lives — sometimes so busy sex is last on the list. This means it often doesn’t happen. No sex is a recipe for an unhappy husband. If you think it always has to be spontaneous, consider changing your paradigm.

In the Huffington Post article, Marriage and Sex: Scheduling Intimacy Can Improve Both, author Anthonia Akitunde recommends committing to a schedule that works for the both people so that sex can become a valuable and enjoyable part of your relationship again. Scheduling sexy time gives you both something to look forward to. It’s all about attitude. Don’t skip the foreplay either — messages, texts, hints, subtle reminders are all good ways to get things going.

5. Stop asking him “why” questions.

In my experience most women love to know why, so we tend to ask that question. Men aren’t fond of these types of questions because they often don’t know the answer. "Why did you do that" or "why are acting like such a jerk" is a common inquiry that benefits no one. (It's SO tempting to ask why right here!) Men either don’t know the answer or don’t want to tell you. This creates a negative emotional environment.

Sherrie Campbell, PhD, writes in Inside the Mind of a Man: The Top Five Things That Make a Man Tick, “when communicating with a man do your best to create a positive emotional environment."

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6. Teach him what you want him to know.

If you want your husband to change any behavior, tell him (nicely) what you do want instead. This takes time and a little patience, but pays off handsomely. 

For example: If you don’t want to return the holiday gifts he chooses for you on his own, help him out. Lists, really clear hints or shopping together can alleviate the stress for both of you. He wants you to be happy, not disappointed and frustrated about a return. Show him what you want and he’ll be so very appreciative. He doesn’t really like guessing.

7. Tell him when he's doing something right.

Give him clear signals — lots of them. Tell him how much you appreciated, loved and/or adored what he just did or said. This makes a man feel like he is a winner with you. Yes we all like to win, but a man will rarely play if he believes he has no possibility of winning.

Be liberal with your appreciation. Do this only if you want him to repeat the behavior. And remember to give him plenty of thanks!

Gayla Wick is a love relationship coach and author who helps single women attract and sustain their authentic love connection. You’re invited to join her weekly blog post community for relationships tips and advice.