The Best Ways to Compliment Your Husband and Wife Compliments are one of the easiest and simplest ways to make your marriage strong. Use these gender-specific tips to build on your happiness together. BY DR. TRINA READ
Compliments are one of the easiest ways to improve your marriage.
“ When a man wants sex he’s like a microwave—plant the idea and 'ding' he’s ready! But a woman is like a crockpot—she needs time to get into the idea.”
In my early years of marriage—while adjusting to each other’s quirks—I got the best advice ever: Whenever I’m completely ticked off at my husband, I think of 10 reasons why I love him and then tell him one of those reasons.
It works every single time, but that’s only when I actually remember to do it. This simple little trick changes my mindset from being ticked off to why I’m grateful to have my husband; and when I go to speak with him instead of spewing anger the first thing that comes out of my mouth is a loving comment. This completely changes the dynamic of that impeding conversation and creates a different relationship vibe.
Can you imagine the state of your marriage, or marriage in general, if we were to acknowledge our spouse each and every day? It’s one of the easiest ways to create a good, ongoing happy marriage; and yet, complimenting our spouse is one of the last things we do.
Theoretically, we should be nicest and kindest to the person we decide to spend the majority of our life with. In reality, too many couples don’t say kind things to their significant other. In fact, we criticize them most.
We make positive comments about our spouses when they are not there, but don’t say them to their face.
Interestingly, the way to compliment a man or woman is opposite from each other. For instance, you might have given your spouse a heartfelt compliment and it went right over their head because it’s not how they want to receive and/or process compliments.
So, in order to achieve a common balance and avoid passing over one another’s compliments, here are some quick and easy tips you can apply tonight to put your marriage at the forefront of praise!
Best Ways to Compliment Your Husband
Short and concise: Don't ramble on about how nice he is or how great his hair is, or anything else. Keep the compliments short and precise. Be specific.
Men want to be heroes: There aren’t a lot of ways to compliment a man. Telling him that he’s a
great husband and father makes him feel wanted, needed and loved. However, I know plenty of women who think, "I work just as hard as him and he get’s to be the hero. It seems so unfair." Yet, when you praise him and let him be the hero, he will subconsciously try to live up to your glowing appraisal.
Compliment the things he loves most—just not him directly: Find out what he’s interested in and the things that are related. My friend says her husband takes great pride in his work truck; she doesn’t understand why, but he has tremendous pride when she compliments his truck. I suppose he is able to connect the dots and project that praise onto himself.
How he makes you laugh and smile: Guys want reassurance that they make you happy and there's no better way to do that than by flattering his good sense of humor.
Best Ways to Compliment Your Wife
Compliment her with details: "You look nice" is kind but vague; tell her why she looks nice. For example, if she has a new outfit on, compliment how it fits on her, or how well that color looks against her skin. She might have to pick herself off the floor because you not only noticed she is wearing something different, but gave her a specific comment about it.
Heap praise on her frequently: Men tend to compliment on two specific occasions: When it’s asked for or when men want romance. Compliments should be given freely and frequently, so that she knows you are thinking of her with no other agenda.
Compliment her daily accomplishments: Your wife makes hundreds of decisions every day. Let her know how impressed you are with what she did.
Show it publicly: Acknowledge in front of others. Make it clear the respect you have for your wife and her contributions. If she wasn’t there to hear it, tell her, "I was talking to Bob today and I told him how you keep me laughing."
Women are like crockpots: When a man wants sex he’s like a microwave—plant the idea and "ding" he’s ready! But a woman is like a crockpot—she needs time to get into the idea. A compliment everyday will create a mutual respect, which is critical to a healthy self-esteem and her will to want and desire sex.
Here’s a final thought: the next time you see your spouse doing something that really, really bugs you, simply turn that situation around by giving them a compliment first. It doesn’t mean they are going to change this behavior, but it does change your mindset. What would that do for your marriage?
Dr. Trina Read is the founder of VivaXO.com; a leading relationship and sexual health expert and educator; and is a best selling author, media expert, syndicated blogger, international speaker, magazine columnist, and spokeswoman. Trina has just launched Sensual Tastes Events, an interactive workshop blending the pleasures of food and sex education. Follow her on Twitter and Facebook.