That time before bed is precious to a marriage and committing to a happy healthy nightly routine with your spouse can make all the difference in maintaining a happy healthy marriage.
By Karla Vance
We have all heard that old saying “never go to bed angry” and though some nights are easier than others my husband and I have tried to live by that motto. When the stress of work or home responsibilities get to us, it can make that period before we go to sleep a time that should be filled with cuddles and loving words, combative, restless and ultimately lead to the Negative Spiral of Marital Misery. That time before bed is precious to a marriage and committing to a happy healthy nightly routine with your spouse can make all the difference in maintaining a happy healthy marriage. So how do you do that?
Find a Routine that Works
For us, finding a routine that works was all about setting realistic expectations. When my husband and I first started paying attention to our nightly routine in earnest we had grand plans of spending an hour (30 minutes a piece) recounting our day and staring lovingly into each other’s eyes. However, the realities of life made this lofty goal impossible, just like my desire to never let my children taste a chicken nugget. My husband and I go to sleep at roughly the same time, so while we are getting ready for sleep we spend a few minutes without computers, TVs, or kids and focus on us. It is important not to use this time to recount the growing list of honey do’s you have piling in your head. This time should be about connecting with your spouse on a personal level. This time of connectedness doesn’t only have to be filled with conversations. Intimacy is just as important as communication and physical touch can have a deep impact on your emotional well-being.
More things to consider.
My husband loves my peach cobbler. So, every now and then we will enjoy the dessert in bed (just make sure to brush your teeth afterward)! Dessert in bed is a tradition that started when I was pregnant with our second child and helps us reconnect to very special moments in our marriage journey. Dancing, singing, or listening to music are all fun activities that can help focus your attention on each other and away from the stress of day to day life.
Getting a good nights rest.
Finally, actually getting a good night’s rest together is tantamount to having a healthy happy nighttime routine. Couples with different sleep patterns reported a higher propensity for marital conflict, less time in serious conversation, and less time spent in shared activities. Setting a sleep schedule that you both can keep, investing in the right mattress for your sleeping needs, and including physical activity in your daily routine are all activities that will help facilitate a better night’s sleep.
Making a conscious effort at having a happier healthier bedtime routine will have a tremendously positive effect on your marriage. Find the routine that works best for you and your spouse and STICK TO IT! Above all else, remember to enjoy every moment you have together.
Karla Vance is the mother to three darling children: Brittany, Christopher, and Jenna, wife to Christopher and marketing manager at Mattresses For Less in Houston, Texas.