The fact that you’re looking up ways to be a better husband already speaks volumes.
While there is no perfect marriage, the secret to a lasting and successful one depends on you and your partner making an effort and actively seeking ways to become a better partner.
There are probably more than a thousand ways to become a better husband.
We’ve named our favorite 30 actionable tips below.
While following these may not be the easiest thing to do, just try your best to stay consistent.
In time, you’ll become a happier, more attentive, and more compassionate husband.
Qualities of a Good Husband
Before discussing the best ways to be a better husband, we thought we’d let you in on the qualities that make a man a good husband.
You can’t possibly be a good husband if you have not reached emotional maturity.
A good husband knows how to control his rash impulses whenever dealing with stress and conflicts – two things that are unavoidable in marriages.
You need to learn to balance the ups and downs of your marriage while not losing your resiliency.
No person is perfect – not even you or your partner. Usually in a marriage, the negative traits of one person adversely impact their partner.
Someone who is not growth-oriented will tell their wife that he is the way he is and that it’s the wife’s responsibility to deal with his attitude.
However, it’s your responsibility to grow and adapt, just like it’s your wife's responsibility to try her best to understand you.
3. Common values
This is one of the most important qualities of a good husband. Without common beliefs and values, you can’t possibly expect someone to be a good life partner.
This may include:
- Views on children
- Core values
- Where you want to live
- Lifestyle preferences
If you have major differences between your wife or you’re not on the same page about something, make sure both of you still respect each other.
Support is essential in any marriage. If your wife is working towards a goal, you must always support her.
A good husband does not laugh at his wife’s dreams and aspirations.
Instead, he understands that even if the rest of the world thinks that she is chasing after an unreachable dream, he must stand beside her all the way.
One of the most endearing qualities of a good husband is trustworthiness.
His wife is never afraid that he will violate her trust. He is always genuine and means what he says. Therefore, his wife is sure that he would never hurt her intentionally.
5. Someone who makes an effort
A good husband is not afraid to put effort if there is a problem in his marriage. He always wants to work to be the best version of himself.
A good husband understands that marriage takes effort.
But since he may have a different idea of what “effort” means in the relationship compared to his wife, he tries to understand where she is coming from.
6. He is a good communicator
All marriages experience fights, discussions, and clashes.
However, a good husband can communicate with his wife about major and minor issues, and even if one or both of them are upset with each other.
A good husband does not think twice about bringing up specific issues because he fears rocking the boat. And during the communication process, he respects and listens to what his wife has to say.
30 Ways to Become a Better Husband
Marriage takes work – a lot of it. Turns out, husbands can’t simply go on autopilot and make their wife or partner feel loved.
You have to devote effort to understanding, appreciating, and loving your spouse, and anyone who is married will tell you that this is not an easy thing to do.
Let’s face it, every man already has an idea of what they can do to become a better husband.
We’re here to help you find out the most actionable ways you can achieve this to make your marriage the best it can be.
1. Remember to be nice
One of the major foundations of modern relationship therapy is based on the findings of John Gottman, a psychologist who videotaped thousands of couples to dissect their interactions into data.
He found out that happy couples follow a ratio of five positive interactions for every negative interaction.1
Don’t panic – this doesn’t mean buying your wife a new luxury bag or planning a grand holiday for every fight you have.
Even the simplest positive interactions can do wonders such as smiling at your partner, showing you are listening to them, or holding their hand.
2. Notice your wife
Whether you notice it or not, your wife may be making an attempt to get your interest and attention.
Going back to Gottman’s research, he found out that happy couples pick up on emotional bids 86% of the time.2
So how can you do this? Make an effort to pay attention to your partner whether they are talking or not.
For instance, if you notice your wife is sad, ask her about her day before watching a game on TV.
See every interaction as an opportunity to connect with the love of your life. When you always turn away, your marriage can suffer.
3. Praise your wife
When you’ve been living with someone for a long time, it’s easy to miss all the positive things they are doing and simply focus on the negative things.
But if you want to be a better husband, try to switch your focus on the good things.
For instance, if your wife wakes up mad, do not see it as an opportunity for confrontation.
Keep in mind that negativity will only magnify your wife’s faults.3
When she makes you a good cup of coffee even when she’s not feeling her best, thank her for it. This positive action will multiply to more good things.
4. Do not forget to compromise
Conflicts are normal in every marriage.
One of the easiest ways you can resolve this is to look at it from the angle of the Nash Equilibrium game theory, which is mostly used in economics, political science, and sociology.4
This technique is used to push for better negotiations, especially in uncooperative situations.
At the end of each conflict, make sure that you and your wife remain happy and satisfied.
For instance, if you and your wife are fighting because you want to go out with your friends, you may realize that what she doesn’t like is the fact that you forget to update her when you’re in the moment.
By finding the Nash Equilibrium in your issues, both of you can meet your needs better.
5. Prioritize having an emotional connection
The secret to being the best husband your wife deserves is to make an effort to maintain your emotional connection.
Fall in love with your wife again and again by being there for her, and helping her throughout her day.
Every couple has their issues, but what erodes the relationship is when they start developing an emotional disconnection.
One of the best ways you can foster a stronger emotional connection is to practice the technique used in Emotionally Focused Therapy, which is a type of short-term therapy that improves bonds in adult relationships.5
This involves de-escalation or identifying negative patterns and behaviors that are hurting your relationship.
6. Listen to your brain
When biological anthropologist and Kinsey Institute senior fellow Helen Fisher put people into a brain scanner, she found out that when it comes to love and the brain, there are three neurochemical components common in people who have high satisfaction in their relationship.6
This includes empathy, maintaining a positive view of your partner, and controlling your feelings and stress.
If you want to be a better husband, learn to empathize with your wife and understand her perspective instead of wanting to come out as the winner of every fight.
When it comes to controlling your stress, it all boils down to not acting out when you’re feeling mad.
7. Practice eye contact
According to the Director of Researchers in Behaviour Sequence Analysis (ReBSA) at the University of Lincoln David Keatley, eye contact can tell you if someone is attending to you.7
It implies that you have their attention, and it can even show concern, happiness, enjoyment, and love, among other things.
So next time your partner is talking to you, keep eye contact.
8. Schedule sex
This may seem like the most unromantic thing to do but if you want to be a better husband, following it is integral.
According to relationship expert Emily Nagoski in her book Come As You Are, arousal is not the same for everyone.8
There are those that can become aroused spontaneously, while there are also people that need a stimulus.
The goal is to focus on intimacy so you and your wife can remain in sync. Try to discuss with your partner which time of the week you want to get intimate where you don’t have to rush.
9. Put your phone down
When you’re on your phone all the time, it can make way for dissatisfaction in the relationship on a subconscious level since this creates emotional distance between you and your wife.9
Whether you want to admit it or not, your phone is distracting you from forging authentic interactions with those around you, and if you do not take action, your wife may end up feeling neglected.
10. Keep your energy in check
Life is not always rainbows. Most of the time, you have to deal with stressors you can’t control.
However, what you can control is your energy and how you stay present in your marriage.
Because of this, be careful of the energy you bring into your home. When your energy is negative, this could affect your wife’s mood.10
11. Tell your wife you appreciate her
Author and couple’s therapist Jonathan Robinson said in his book More Love, Less Conflict:
A Communication Playbook for Couples, that one of the most integral aspects of a relationship is the need to be understood and feel like their partner values their emotions.11
This may seem hard to do but it’s actually very easy once you become more intentional.
Leave a simple note, compliment your wife, send her a text in the middle of the day – these things may seem small but they can go a long way in letting your wife know you love her.
12. Take a break
In every marriage, it’s easy to overreact when you are challenged or criticized.
According to Jean Fitzpatrick LP, a relationship therapist, people are wired to retaliate when they feel attacked.12
However, you don’t always have to react to every stimulus.
One of the techniques to become a better husband is to understand that sometimes, you need a minute to process things.
When your wife says something you don’t like, do not immediately switch to defensive mode.
Take a moment to understand what she’s trying to say before crafting your answer.
13. Don’t use “You” while arguing
By now, we have cemented the fact that arguments in marriages are completely normal.13
However, they don’t have to escalate into bombs.
When arguing with your partner, use “I” statements instead of shifting the focus on your partner’s mistakes and saying “you need to be better” or “you did this.” By using “I” statements, you can take responsibility for your actions better.
14. Be specific
Showing appreciation to your wife is important, but saying thank you is not enough.14
One of the ways to become a better husband is to be more specific in your gratitude.
If your spouse does something nice for you, don’t just say “thank you” and get it over with.
Focus on the specifics and say something like “I know you’ve been busy but you still made an effort to do that” or “you’re so thoughtful and I’m so thankful for cooking breakfast every morning.”
By expressing your gratitude well, you can focus on the strengths of your partner instead of the benefit you experienced.
15. Be more flirty
Another surefire way to become a better husband is to remind your wife every day that she is loved, and you’re having fun in your relationship even after being married for years.
According to author Fran Greene in her book The Flirting Bible, when the commitment is set, most people feel relieved they don’t need to flirt anymore.15
However, the opposite is true. Just because you’ve been together for years does not mean you should stop flirting.
16. Do the dishes
A good husband does not think of his wife as a maid.
Surprisingly, live-in boyfriends are more likely to help their partner in household chores compared to husbands.16
If you really want to become a better husband, lessen the load of your wife by doing your part in house chores.
For instance, you can do the dishes after dinner so your wife can have more time to do her self-care routine.
If you want to experience bliss in your marriage, give your wife a hand or hire a maid if you can afford it.
17. Encourage her to sleep
Whether you’ve been married for two weeks, two years, or two decades, you may already know this – women are grumpier than most men in the morning.17
If you want to be a better husband, give her more time to sleep. Better yet, help her improve the quality of her sleep.
After all, if your wife has trouble sleeping, the next day could be a nightmare for both of you.
18. Be in the present
It seems one of the most common things people do in marriages is daydream.
If you’re always imagining how happy you’ll be if your wife “didn’t do this” or “didn’t act like that,” you’ll never be satisfied.
Instead, stop focusing on these scenarios. Visualizing your ideal wife will only make room for unproductive regret.
While communicating in your marriage is important, do not get too caught up in what she could be.18
19. Support her in her career
Chances are, the things that make you happy in your marriage make your wife happy too.
Considering this, when your wife contributes financially to your marriage, she becomes more satisfied.
Unfortunately, she faces more pressure to get home faster so she can start cooking your dinner or take care of the kids.
This forces her to scale down her work so she could take care of her family more.19
What you can do is assure her that you will still be there for her even if she’s focused on work.
Take some chores off her hands. For example, surprise her with a hearty dinner so she can feel better after a long day in the office.
20. Relax together
Stress is not only bad for your marriage, but also your health.
It can make way for problems such as cancer, stroke, and heart issues.
This is why those in unhappy marriages have unhealthy blood pressure compared to those who are happy in their marriage.20
One way to lessen stress in your marriage and become a better husband is to relax together.
Treat yourself to a couples’ massage, or plan a weekend staycation in a hotel nearby.
If you are working with a limited budget, drop your wife a quick message during her workday to check up on her.
21. Compliment your wife
Complimenting your wife publicly and privately will do wonders for her self-esteem.
If a woman feels unattractive, it can lead to decreased sexual self-esteem which can lead to sexual activity avoidance.21
What you can do is to throw in more compliments, and don’t forget to be specific about it.
The more detailed and genuine you are, the more personal your compliment will be.
Tell her her hair looks nice, or she smells good. Whether you compliment her in private or in public, it will help her realize how beautiful she really is.
22. Hire a babysitter
Think your kid is interfering with your marriage? You are not alone. Over 90% of couples experience decreased marital satisfaction after their first child is born.22
Instead of mulling over this and feeling guilty about it, be more proactive.
Take your wife out to dinner and hire a babysitter so you don’t need to worry about your kid.
If shelling out money is not in the picture, ask your in-laws for a favor.
23. Plan a weekend trip
Just because you’ve been married for years doesn’t mean romance should go out of the window. Plan a romantic trip to a nearby spot as a surprise.
However, don’t forget to tune in to the menstrual cycle of your wife.
Keep in mind that when your wife is ovulating, this can increase their libido, which can lead to higher intimacy on your trip.23
This window happens two weeks after your wife begins her period, minus 6 days.
24. Show affection
The bedroom is not the only place you can show affection to your wife. Remember – PDA stands for Public Display of Affection.24
Your wife’s satisfaction in your marriage will increase when you can be physically affectionate towards her in a subtle way.
No groping, no licking, or even kissing. Instead, be subtle – rest your hand on her knee while driving, or hold her lower back when you are walking side by side.
She’ll feel happier knowing that you want to always be close to her even outside your bedroom.
25. Kiss her every morning
Before you leave the house, always lock lips with your wife.
Leaning in for a see you later kiss before walking out the door may seem like a minuscule thing, but kissing your wife can help release oxytocin, which makes you feel more connected with each other. It also lessens stress.25
26. Laugh with your wife
One of the best things you can do as a husband is to maintain humor and laughter in your marriage.26
This doesn’t mean to make fun of your wife, but laughing at her attempts at humor. Over time, a lot of husbands forget to do this.
So what if your wife isn’t funny?
Neither are your bosses or some of your friends and yet it’s still easy to laugh at their jokes. Think of laughing as a way to show respect.
27. Don’t be shy to make a suggestion
If you think you and your wife are on solid ground, this can be a great time to experiment and push your boundaries.
Nearly 47% of women have fantasized about dominating someone sexually and more women are also aroused by the idea of being dominated.27
The secret is to keep the experience positive. Do not suggest that you want to experiment because you think the sex is getting boring.
Emphasize to your wife that it’s about trying out something fun instead of fixing something that is broken.
28. Send her reminders
Implicit egotism suggests that humans have a preference for the things they associate with themselves.28
Use this to your advantage by reminding your wife of the things you share – this can be your birth month, your love for desserts, or your favorite cuisine. This will surely reignite the spark.
29. Make an effort to look good
It’s no secret that it’s common for women to make an effort to look good, so why shouldn’t men do the same?29
Many couples take each other’s appearance for granted in the years following their marriage.
They may fall behind on exercising or keeping salon and barber appointments.
But if you want to become a better husband, recall how much you wanted to look good to impress your wife when she was still your girlfriend.
Care about your hygiene and body shape, or remember her favorite fragrance.
30. Share a late dinner
Maintaining a healthy marriage even under work stress is extremely hard, and one of the ways you can be a better husband is to encourage your wife to unwind after she arrives home instead of immediately taking care of dinner.
After all, everyone enjoys having more time on their hands.
When both of you have more time for yourself before dinner, it will decrease the likelihood of you transferring your work stress to your wife and vice versa.30
- The Atlantic
- Corporate Finance Institute
- Very Well Mind
- Helen Fisher: How Does Love Affect The Brain?
- MGMT Prop
- Short Form
- Finding Happiness
- Jean Fitzpatrick LP
- Oprah Daily
- Fran Greene
- New Sleep Council
- Economic Times
- Psychology Today
- Live Science
- Health Line
- Womens Health Mag
- Health Line
- Everyday Health
- Sage Pub
- Psychology Today
- Harvard Business Review