Maybe you haven’t spoken the two ugly words out loud to your spouse, but you have thought them. “I’m bored.” We can whine, complain, and fuss about the dull routine of married life. Running in circles and coordinating schedules, eating at the same restaurants, and clashing over the same issues. Your marriage isn’t bad, but some days, you have to admit it’s just plain boring.
I remember when my son Ethan, who was in first grade, came home sulking. He wasn’t acting like his usual chipper self.
“What’s wrong?” I asked.
“School was so boring. Recess was boring. We always play the same game. It was so boring,” he lamented.
I had to chuckle. I gave my mom speech about how if school recess was boring, he was really going to think that full-time employment was a real yawn. I went on and on about how you have to bring the action and excitement yourself. “Don’t say you’re bored,” I said in my motherly tone. “It’s your choice to be proactive and to not be bored.”
That same advice given to a first grader applies to husbands and wives today. If we are bored in our marriages, the first place we must look to place blame is the mirror. I love what Dr. Marjorie Blanchard says in my book 31 Days to Becoming a Happy Wife:
I think women and men need to stay interesting to themselves. They need to pursue their own interests and also to look carefully for something they can share with their spouse. I think men love to have a pal and if you can find some things that you both like doing, I think that’s very important in a marriage. The other thing that I think is very important for men and women to do is to develop their own interests.
Ask yourself “What’s new on my resume in the last 3 years?”
If you have been feeling bored in your marriage relationship, what are a few things you could do to change that? Remember you’re not going to wait around for your spouse to fix things for you. You can be proactive by:
• Planning a date to a new restaurant
• Trying a new activity together like kayaking, dancing, photography, or running
• Spending time doing something you really love
• Finding somewhere to volunteer that you both enjoy
• Having a candlelight dinner at home
• Journaling about 10 things you are thankful for in your marriage
Make the decision to take the words “I’m bored” out of your vocabulary. Most pleasant memories don’t just happen; they must be arranged for in advance. In the same way you planned a surprise birthday party for a family member or friend, you’ve got to plan to make special memories with your spouse.
Don’t check out of your marriage emotionally, physically or spiritually when boredom hits. Realize that the blahs come to everyone. Those who have successful marriages learn how to keep boredom at bay by constantly growing. Be intentional about keeping your marriage interesting and fun. Avoid uttering the words “I’m bored” and instead say, “I think we should try…”
Arlene Pellicane is author of 31 Days to Becoming a Happy Wife. Find more resources at www.ArlenePellicane.com or contact her via Twitter (@arlenepellicane).