Couple talking on couch

Improve your marriage

Communication, or lack thereof, is the root of all problems in marriages. Instead of waiting for issues to arise and failing to communicate properly, sit down one night per week and ask your spouse these 10 questions (and don't forget to answer them yourself, too!).

It's time to raise the bar when it comes to your marriage! Instead of just settling for a 'good enough' marriage, let's work together to make it great. Ask anyone that's in a happy marriage how they do it — and "communication with each other" is bound to come up. If you have a hard time communicating with your partner, or even just want to take your marriage from great to outstanding, set aside some time each week to ask your husband these 10 questions.

1

How was your week?

So simple, yet very rarely asked. Relationship expert April Masini states this is the most important question you can ask your spouse. "Without spelling out the question, it's very easy for your husband to feel taken for granted and even taken advantage of," she says.

2

What are your plans for the upcoming week?

Pull out the calendar and together discuss what each of you is doing for the week. Do you have a girls' night planned? Does he need to work late a few days? Fill each other in on your plans! Now is also the time to set aside a date night for the two of you. It doesn't have to be fancy — but schedule some downtime with each other midweek.

3

What can I do to help you this week?

Remember, marriage is a partnership. Sure, you may be swamped at work or busy running the kids around, but your marriage should be your first priority. Ask your husband what you can do this week to make his life a little easier. Chances are he'll be more than happy to lend a helping hand next time you ask, too.

4

Did I do anything to irritate you this past week?

Asking this question forces you to be vulnerable. Be careful not to be too critical when answering the question, though. The goal is to work through irritabilities with one another together. Maybe your husband didn't call one night and came home late, leaving you unsure as to when to make dinner. Maybe you took your bad day at work out on him and spoiled the evening. Be open!

5

How can I make you feel loved?

In marriage, it's vital to feel loved by your spouse. This is different than offering to help them. Maybe your husband feels loved when you pursue him sexually, maybe he loves when you offer to make him his favorite drink or maybe he simply loves cuddling on the couch. If you don't ask him though, you won't know.

6

How are you doing at work?

Oftentimes spouses tune each other out when talking about work. It can be hard to care about the nitty-gritty details of their day when you're trying to make dinner and unwind. Relationship expert Rochelle Peachey believes it's vital to stay in-the-know with what's going on in your spouse's job. Ask him if he's completed his most recent project, if he's happy with his current position and where he sees himself five years down the road.

7

How's our sex life for you?

This can be a tough question to ask, but it's a must. Has your husband felt pursued sexually by you? Does he feel you desire him? What does he need from you sexually?

8

Do you need some alone time this week?

Let's face it — we all need alone time. Husbands can sometimes feel guilty for wanting alone time after work after you've been with the kids all day. The truth is, he needs alone time just as much as you. Maybe give him an hour on Tuesday after work and he'll take the kids on Wednesday evening for you. Remember, you're a team!

9

What made you the happiest this week?

The answer to this question may surprise you. You may have made your husband's day when he came home to his favorite meal one night, or maybe the best part of his week was watching his favorite TV show. Whatever his answer, try to duplicate it this week!

10

Do you want to have sex?

April Masini says asking him directly is a great way to reconnect, especially if you've been stuck in a rut. Even if now isn't an opportune time for the two of you, he'll be thrilled you asked. And hey — there's no better way to end your conversation than by making love!

More on communication

Knowing when to see a marriage counselor
What is your body language communicating?
A guide to effective communication in the age of social media

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