Happy New Year! Changing the calendar to 2017 is a great time for us to analyze the past and set new goals and a vision for the future. This time of reflection should inspire us to create new habits and practices that will help us succeed not only professionally, but also personally.

Have you given any thought to developing goals and a vision for your marriage? Set aside some time in the next week to meet with your spouse to do just that. Use this handy guide to help you identify the areas where you can increase and improve your connection as a couple.

Individually, rank how you think you’re currently connecting in each area as a couple. Use a scale of 1-10, with 1 being the lowest and 10 being the highest.

Spiritual Growth

  • Praying Together
  • Bible Reading
  • Church Attendance
  • Small Group/Bible Study Group Participation

Time Together

  • Spending Time Together Each Day
  • Regular Date Nights
  • Having Fun
  • Being Affected by Outside Distractions (Technology, Schedules, Children)

Physical Intimacy

  • Sex
  • Non-sexual Touch
  • Open Communication

Financially

  • Budgeting
  • Spending Within Our Means
  • Saving
  • Sharing a Common Vision/Goals for Our Finances

Intellectually

  • Talking About Things Other Than the Kids
  • Ability to Talk About Individual Interests
  • Having Shared Interests that We Enjoy Talking About

Parenting

  • Being on the Same Page
  • Growing Together as Parents Through Classes, Podcasts, Books, etc.
  • Family Time

Communication

  • Conflict Resolution
  • Ability to Share Honestly
  • Effectively Listening to One Another

Next, discuss your results together and come up with some goals and practices that will help you improve your marriage in 2017. For best success, make sure to set goals that are SMART: specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely. Don’t just say, “Let’s spend more time together.” Instead, a SMART goal would be to have two date nights a month. Or instead of saying, “Let’s communicate more about our finances,” use SMART as your guide and decide to have a budget meeting every pay day where you talk about your budget and expenses.

Increasing marital connection of any kind will take effort and initiative. Working toward new goals will take adjustment and commitment. Your marriage is worth it! I hope you will soon see the results of your hard work by experiencing greater and deeper connection with your spouse in 2017.

We’d love to hear about the goals you set and your progress throughout the year. Leave us a comment and let us know how you’re doing!