Research shows it takes just 21 days to form a habit. Seems so simple to start and stick with doing something good for yourself like working out, eating clean, not yelling at the kids, etc. But it also takes just 21 days to create the not so positive habits that over time can build up and breakdown a marriage…
Habits both good and bad impact our day to day. From our own marriage, we’ve rounded up 5 bad habits we’ve seen impact us and the lives of those around us that we know you too will be able to relate with and work towards changing:
BAD HABIT #1: Addiction to anything
Food, drugs, movies, music, spending money, working, etc. We live in an addictive society where addiction is often masked and not really called out for what it is, damaging. Let’s use social media for example; it’s often an addiction that we don’t notice, but in reality we feel naked without our iphone to check up on our facebook timeline every 20 minutes. We can’t go one dinner without grabbing our phone to check whatever profile or respond to various text messages. Addiction, in a multitude of forms kills marriages.
It’s like a 3rd party enters into your marriage when addiction is present and it’s no longer just husband and wife, but husband, wife and ___________________ (fill in the blank).
Break the habit: Take a hiatus from whatever addictions may be forming in your daily routine – social media, sweet snacks, foul language, etc. For some of us, we need to go as far as to ask our spouse what addictions they feel we have and commit to avoiding those for a certain period of time.
BAD HABIT #2: Texting instead of calling
We’ve all heard that communication is key in any relationship, but what kind of communication it is matters too. In our marriage, we experienced so deeply a lack of communication which eventually forced us to make some changes. When we did, having a daily “catch up chat” was a priority and later lead us to create The 3 Love Habits that we practice daily.
Texting about life creates a watered down and lifeless relationship. Overtime, when all you have are a few strands of text, there’s no real intimacy, desire or love to be shared.
Break the habit: Pick up the phone on your lunch break to just ask about your spouses day. Schedule a coffee date with no phones to simply chat. Intentionally invest in undoing the habit of texting as the main line of communication in your relationship.
BAD HABIT #3: Keeping busy with nothing that really matters
After years of marriage it’s so easy to grow apart, to just get busy individually and never have any fun together. Identifying leisure activities to do with your spouse can be challenging, but without any fun, what’s a marriage? Cut the busy and make time for having fun with your spouse.
Break the habit: Need help with ideas?
– Try a date night to a new restaurant you’ve never been to.
– Ask your co-workers where and what they do for fun, you might grab some exciting ideas!
BAD HABIT #4: Cut the complaining
Whether you’re bitter from feeling that you’re never heard by your spouse or complaining out of jealousy, frustration and fear, cut the complaining. No one loves a nagging spouse. Chances are, the more you nag and complain the less you’ll ever be heard. Complaining sets a culture in a relationship of continual failure – nothing is ever good enough and overtime that breaks a marriage apart.
Break the habit: Ask your spouse to gently let you know when you’re complaining – chances are you don’t even know when you’re doing it!
BAD HABIT #5: Giving what you think your spouse wants
When was the last time you asked your spouse what they need to feel loved and secure? It’s that communication is key thing…. Assuming what or how your spouse needs you to fulfill them is only a train wreck waiting to happen.
Break the habit: Go ask! Find out what makes them tick and feel loved, needed and appreciated in your relationship.
For more details on how you can discover your spouses love language, tune in to this podcast episode where we hash out all you need to know!
Have other bad habits you’ve had to work to break? Comment below! We want to hear them.