A few weeks ago, I was busted by my wife. I made the mistake of helping to set up a new calendar app on her phone and signed into my own google account instead of hers. Awkwardly, she approached me one day to ask me about a calendar event that had popped up on her phone. The event was simply titled, “Treat Your Wife.” So I had to tell her about my secret, and as a result I think I should share it with all of our grooms to help them out as well.
I have a bi-weekly calendar reminder scheduled that sends me a notification that simply says, “Treat Your Wife.” I’ve had this calendar reminder running for the past three years now. It’s a simple reminder to make me think about doing something special for my wife. It’s a system that has worked well for me, and though my wife never picked up on it before seeing the alert in her calendar app, she has told me several times over the last three years that she feels more loved by me than ever before in our relationship. That means a lot to me, because I like it when my conscious efforts are recognized.
Over the past three years when I’ve seen this alert on my phone, I’ve done little things like writing notes to my wife to let her know I love her and sometimes I’ve done bigger things like planning a date night in downtown Indianapolis. The goal isn’t that each time you see the reminder you instantly feel compelled to do something. The goal is to have a reminder set up every few weeks to make you look at your relationship and actions and decide whether or not you could do something extra to make your spouse feel loved.
So here are some examples of things I’ve done over the last few years as a result of my bi-weekly reminder to make sure I’m making an effort in my relationship:
Write a note letting her know how much I appreciate her and everything she does
Buy flowers, beer, wine, or chocolate
Make dinner and do the dishes
Clean the whole house
Surprise visit my wife when she thinks I’m busy
Trim the garden and make a bouquet out of flowers that needed trimmed (you can only get away with this one like once a year unless you have a big garden)
Hold her hand (out in public, at the grocery store or on some non-date related outed)
Clean her car
Plan a date night out
Plan a date night in
Create a miniature scavenger hunt around the house
Draw a bath, light candles, and queue up some soothing music for her while I watch the kids
Sit down and really listen (without trying to fix the situation)
Get the kids out of the house so she can have some alone time
A lot of these things probably don’t seem like you’re doing much of anything. A lot of people probably don’t understand why you would need a reminder set in your phone to do things that they assume people in love always do. Well, I’m a selfish human being. I typically don’t spend my time thinking about how I can make someone else’s life better. I typically spend my time trying to make myself happy. I didn’t think I was going to end up like this when I was younger, and it certainly wasn’t a goal in my life, but I feel like if I honestly assess my life this is the truth. I need reminders to be better than myself, or else I keep my head down and focus on myself instead of thinking about my wife and what I could do to make her happy, because if I don’t think about how I’m spending my time I usually do a piss poor job of it. So my advice to all of our grooms (past, present, and future) is to find a way to remind yourself to be better than yourself, to treat your wife like she deserves to be treated. It’ll make you happier, and it’ll make her happier too.