We don't want to accept this harsh reality but most of us are in marriages which have a lot of room for improvement.

But there are several steps you can take to strengthen your marriage.

Today I'm sharing an infographic that talks about 8 scientific ways to improve your marriage plus 50 bonus tips below the infographic.

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Okay, so you’ve scanned through the pretty little pictures and notes, but here’s the real deal on all of them:

1. Praise your spouse EVERY DAY and SHOW APPRECIATION

If you have 5 positive interactions for every negative interaction with your spouse, the happiness factor increases considerably, according to Dr. John Gottman!

Liz's take:

Show your spouse how much they mean to you!

This one is rather simple: we ALL crave appreciation and praise.

I’m not saying you have to worship the ground they walk on, because to be frank, we ALL have flaws.

What I’m suggesting here is a simple appreciation for the little things they do, and honoring them for all they mean to you and bring into the relationship.

Your husband taking out the trash can for you while you do the dishes…THAT’S his way of doing something small to make your life easier, the least you can do is show him that you really appreciate it.

Exclusive tip for women: check out one of my highly recommended resources "What Men Secretly Want" for getting on a deep emotional level with your husband. No BS, only really valuable insights.

2. Little acts of kindness have a huge impact

The 4 side-effects of kindness: it makes you happier, boosts heart health, slows down aging and it’s also contagious.

Liz's take:

Go ahead and give your spouse the last piece of cheese!

What? Why cheese?

You know, my husband and I, we just love cheese.

Especially one that has little chili flakes in it. (My mouth is watering, I think I'll get one right now)

The other day, we were having breakfast and there was a good piece left which we divided evenly in two.

I was really hungry and 5 minutes later my piece was gone.

I really love that cheese!

But I saw that my husband still had one bite left on his plate (he's that kind of person who saves the best for last) and he noticed that I kept staring at it.

What do you think he did?

He stood up, grabbed his last bite of cheese and gave it to me without saying a word, and started to do the dishes.

I was stunned and really couldn't believe what just happened.

This might not be a big deal for you but it really is for me, as you can tell.

After all, I still remember it.

A little bit of kindness really goes A LONG way!

3. Play together to stay together

A great sense of humor is one of the top 3 stated reasons for a successful relationship by couples who had been married at least 45 years.

Even reminiscing about laughing together improves relationship satisfaction in couples considerably.

Liz's take:

If laughing boosts your personal well-being, just think of what it can do for your relationship!

Having fun with your partner helps bring you closer together, and keeps you closer in the long run.

Here’s the science behind it:

The activities associated with falling in love release oxytocin, the hormone that relaxes blood vessels and lowers blood pressure.

It also acts as a neurotransmitter in the brain, deepening the feeling of connection and trust.

The reason you fell in love with your partner in the first place was because he or she provided you with the most joy, not necessarily the best options for bill-paying and child-raising!

Get back in touch with the fun things you used to do back when you started dating to re-activate the fun factor in your relationship.

Even if it’s just for 10 minutes a day, stop being the rule-maker and start creating a safe space where your partner can come out and play with you!

4. Try new things with your spouse

Trying something new with your spouse floods the brain with dopamine and norepinephrine, which are the same brain circuits that are ignited in early romantic love.

Liz's take:

This isn’t just about raunchy positions in bed, although I’m not ruling that one out altogether.

When I talk about “new things”, I’m referring to things that can help make the connection between the two of you even greater!

Always wanted to go skydiving?

Grab your spouse by the hand and have them join in on the adventure with you.

This builds great memories and massively impacts the intimate connection between the two of you.

Variety is a key element in keeping the love flame burning high, and one partner’s silence about something new they would like to do can easily drive a wedge in the relationship.

5. Get back into the dating game...with your spouse!

Couples who keep on dating each other are 3.5 times more likely to be and stay happy compared to couples who don’t play the dating game anymore.

Liz's take:

Dating is NOT just for singles!

Getting away from everyday life, even if it’s just once a month does three major things for your relationship:

It fuels the romance fire

It helps you reconnect and grow closer to one another

It puts you back on track with your number one priority – your relationship!

By dating your spouse, you’re reminding them that they are the number one priority in your life, and in the process, strengthening your relationship.

6. Fight it out!

One of the major obstacles in relationship is the fact that people tend to suppress their anger, which leads to resentment.

But (good) fights actually help couples to grow together on a much deeper level.

Liz's take:

I’m talking about learning the skills to be able to fight a good fight, one that doesn’t destruct, but rather reinforce the relationship.

What you really want to avoid is the concept of holding onto your anger, because essentially, it builds up to act like poison to the entire relationship.

Whenever you get into a word-tumble with your spouse, always remember to stay respectful towards your partner.

Listening to your partner is equally as important as voicing your own frustrations, compromise and be understanding of their point of view.

7. Make time for intimacy

Over 50% of couples asked in this study, are not satisfied with the frequency of having sex.

However, just by increasing your sexual activity from once a month to once a week, boosts happiness by the same amount as getting paid an extra 50,000 $ a year

Liz's take:

In between raising the kids, housekeeping, the bills, work…LIFE for that matter, you still have to ensure that you set aside special time just for sex.

Your sex life is a major role player in the overall joy factor of your relationship.

Sure, we’d all love to have spontaneous sex on the kitchen table where nothing was planned, but reality kicks us in the face here, which is why you have to accept the idea that sometimes you’ll just have to schedule it.

I know:

It sounds much less romantic, but scheduling sex can have a great element of anticipation and excitement added to it, knowing that it’s on the schedule!

If you’re really opportunistic, even a boring dinner at home can lead to some kitchen counter adventures!

8. Touch each other…A LOT

Touching is vital to a happy relationship.

Full body connection increases connection, closeness and a feeling of safety!

Liz's take:

Did you know?

There’s actually an ideal number of hugs and kisses we should receive daily in order to be happy and healthy!

The formula for the amount you need was devised by psychotherapist Virginia Satir.

She found this:

“We need 4 hugs a day for survival. We need 8 hugs a day for maintenance. We need 12 hugs a day for growth."

Why all the touching?

Well, hugging and touching releases oxytocin, the great stress fighting hormone.

More oxytocin leads to less stress, which obviously leads to happier people and happier couples overall.

Your affectionate behavior can also say a lot more than your verbal words ever can!

Touching helps bridging the gap between real life and what happens in the bedroom, and keeps the intimacy level high, even when you’re not making love.

Affection can make you feel emotionally connected to each other, which is why you need to touch, hug and kiss your partner as often as possible.

These are really simple, yet effective exercises for improving your marriage.

Just do one step at a time and you will see a positive change in your relationship.

Further Reading:

50 Bonus Tips

What's next?

Did you enjoy my tips to improve a marriage?

Then, please...

1. Give it a share or like 🙂

2. Leave a comment and tell me what you're going to do from that list today.

3. Check out the incredible group interview in which I asked 58 life and marriage coaches to share their top 3 tips for a happy marriage.

  • Hi Elizabeth

    I have to give you huge credit for this wonderful and information filled infographic – I´ve shared it on my social media – and will mention it in my next newsletter.

    It´s so cool – and I know that there is so much work in doing such great information in such an understanding way for your audience.

    I hope it will help lots of people.

    Best regards
    Maj Wismann

  • Hey Liz, I tried to email you but it bounces back saying invalid mailbox.
    I really appreciate your offer to help people for free. What an angel!
    I’ll paste my email to you below and hopefully you’ll see it here:

    I married my wife after she promised me that she trusted me. Only hours after the marriage she started a barrage of ridiculous accusations about me which has basically continued now for 1.5yrs. I believe she suffers from schizoaffective disorder. So far I have not been successful in getting her to get therapy, altho at times she expresses interest, but the one therapist she found who she likes is booked.

    She is stuck in a child’s mind it seems, and she wants me to be her father rather than a partner. In turn, I think she’s the cutest woman on Earth, but I can’t deal with her constant accusations and tantrums.

    I do have immense hope for our relationship in the long term, but short-term looks pretty lame. We’ve been living separately for 6 months or so, and she’s been dating other guys (I haven’t and won’t be doing that, tho she thinks I am of course).

    I see a lot of marriage advice is not focused on relationships like this, but rather ones without serious mental illness.

    I understand that I shouldn’t be taking her anger and insanity personally. However, it is very difficult for me to feel there is any benefit in our spending time together when it seems so filled with misery. In turn she accuses me of not loving her, not wanting to be with her (classic BPD stuff).

    I want to do whatever is best for her, but currently I’m thinking it is best to just give her space. I’m interested to hear if you have any advice or if you have any recommended readings. I’ve read a few good books on BPD (which is part of schizoaffective disorder), including Loving Someone WIth Borderline Personality Disorder.

    Thanks for your time!

    • Hey Joel,

      First, I’d like to say that you are completely right: you should not take it personally as, based on your story, it sounds like that she is projecting the feelings she has for herself on you (and probably everyone around her); i.e.: she doesn’t love herself, she doesn’t want to be with herself, etc.

      The big problem here is that it’s not possible to love someone if you cannot love yourself.

      Think of it this way:

      If you don’t have money in your bank account, you can’t spend any.

      The more interesting question for me is, what is attracting you to a person with this kind of mental illness? And why have you attracted her into your life?

      I strongly believe that we are a sum of all the decisions we make which leads us to the point where we are in life and I am constantly asking myself “Why am I experiencing this and what did I do to get here?”.

      The situation can be good or bad, it doesn’t matter.

      If I am experiencing something that is good for me, I want more of it.

      If it’s bad, I am trying to figure out what I did that led me there and what can I do differently next time.

      So my advice to you is:

      1. don’t push her to go to therapy.

      I always like to compare that with an addict:

      Addicts have almost zero chance to overcome the addiction if the decision to change something doesn’t come from them.

      But what you can do is tell her that you will be there and help her when she decides (and is ready) to do something about it.

      Let her be responsible for her life, don’t try take it for her (it’s not possible anyway).

      2. Concentrate on yourself. The most important person in your life is you and you should treat yourself accordingly.

      This will have 2 main positive effects:

      a. you will get to know yourself better which will automatically lead to more consciousness of what you really want in life (and in a woman).

      In my opinion, every partner we have is a learning experience that helps us get closer and closer to the one we feel being able to grow together.

      b. the law of attraction kicks in:

      Have you experienced one these days where it seems that everything just works out the way it should?

      It’s not a coincidence.

      When you are in a good mood, you are basically radiating this feeling everywhere. People around you notice that and will treat you differently, just like people (probably) don’t want to talk to you a lot when you have a really bad day.

      The same happens with pretty much anything in life.

      So where should you start?

      The easiest thing for me has always been concentrating on my body first as a healthy body is directly interconnected with a healthy mind. I try to get enough sleep, make a diet plan and work out more.

      But this is something you have to figure out yourself.



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