According to the stats, 50% of marriages end up in divorce.
But the upshot is that 50% of marriages stand the test of time.
So how do the people who stay together do it?
Some folks will insist it’s “hard work.”
But in reality, a good marriage is really about adopting the right mindset and implementing a few lifestyle changes.
So today, we’re tackling one side of the coin and looking at how to be a good wife.
What Are the Qualities of a Good Wife?
Being a good wife isn’t about submissiveness or pleasing your husband’s every whim.
In fact, the best wives know themselves, love themselves, and understand what partnership means.
Every relationship is different, but the qualities of a good wife often include being:
- Financially responsible
- Respectful of yourself and your spouse
- Invested in the relationship
- Supportive in good times and bad
How to Be A Better Wife: 31 Actions to Improve Your Marriage
If you’re wondering how to be a better wife and improve your marriage, we’ve got some tips.
Remember, however, that every marriage is different. What works for one couple may not work for another.
So we invite you to read through our 31 tips, pick what feels good for you, and leave the rest.
1. Learn How To Argue
They say that “death and taxes” are life’s only guarantees, but we’d add arguing with your spouse to the list. Shouting across each other, though, won’t get you far. Will it happen?
Of course. But if your goal is a harmonious marriage, learn how to argue productively.
2. Practice Self-Care
You can’t show up for someone else if you don’t show up for yourself. So indulge, sister friend! Take those baths.
Get those mani-pedis. Go to that yoga class! And yes, eat healthily. Because when you feel good, life is much easier — and when life’s more manageable, your relationship wins.
3. Don’t Play Mind Games
You’re married now, so leave the games behind. It’s tiring and only causes problems. Be upfront about your needs and wants — and allow your spouse to do the same.
You’ll have enough things to worry about over the years — especially if you have kids. So toss the mind games aside.
4. Learn To Tune Them Out
When you’re with someone, day in and out, little things they do will start to eat away at your sanity like a moth on cashmere.
Maybe it’s the noises they make in the morning, their utter disregard for the kitchen rules, or how they repeatedly tell that same dumb story like a skipping record!
If you learn to tune them out in these instances, you’ll save yourself hours of annoyance. And if you do it right, they won’t be able to tell you’re somewhere else.
5. Give Them Space
Yes, you’ve tied the knot. But you don’t need to be together every minute you’re not working. Everyone needs time to decompress — so give it.
Don’t start rattling off questions, issues, and problems the second one of you walks through the door.
6. Give Yourself Space
Don’t forget about yourself! You also need space. Avoid becoming a stress bomb on the verge of exploding. Claim some alone time to clear your head when needed.
7. Develop Goals and Support Theirs
A good marriage involves two thriving people. Having goals — individually and together — bonds you. When things are lopsided, and only one person’s dreams are prioritized, resentment festers.
Fulfillment is a two-way street. Support your spouse’s endeavors as well as your own. Remember to ask questions and offer encouragement. Be mindful of their milestones and acknowledge them.
It feels great when your spouse has your back.
8. Know and Use Their Love Language
In 2014, Dr. Gary Chapman published “The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts.” It was a hit, and over the years, his advice has helped millions of couples strengthen their relationships.
You can read more about it here, but for this discussion, know there are five love languages: words of affirmation, quality time, receiving gifts, acts of service, and physical touch.
Figure out your spouse’s love language and cater to it. Identifying the right combination takes a lot of frustration out of any relationship.
9. Always Be Respectful in Public
Do not take it to the streets no matter how angry, annoyed, or frustrated you get with your spouse! Deal with your issues behind closed doors. In public, always strive to be respectful and supportive of each other.
Go to events alone if you’re going through a rough patch and can’t handle being civil to your spouse. It’s better than making a scene.
10. Address Issues
Letting issues metastasize is unwise. It curdles like three-week-old milk. When problems arise, nip them in the bud as soon as possible. In short, being a wife involves a lot of problem-solving.
11. Send Loving Messages
Most people like to get loving messages from the person they love. It’s a virtual hug. So send some! However, don’t overdo it.
Your spouse doesn’t need a message every hour. Heck, they probably don’t need one every day. But every so often, it’s a welcome and warm surprise.
12. Don’t Nag
It may sound old-fashioned, but don’t nag. Do you like when people pester you? Extend your spouse the same courtesy. If they keep forgetting to do something, put a reminder on their phone calendar instead. Use devices to your advantage!
13. Be Thoughtful
More often than not, it’s the little things we remember. If you know they have a big meeting or presentation, make sure you don’t drop a bomb the night before.
Send a message of encouragement when you know they’ll be nervously sitting in the doctor’s waiting room.
Remembering the little things makes a big, loving impression.
14. Apologize If You Misread Him
Teasing everyone once in a while is fine — fun, even. Learning to laugh at yourself is healthy. But don’t constantly belittle your spouse under the guise of a “joke.” It gets old fast.
There will be times when you incorrectly read the room, and they’re not as amenable as you assumed to some jocularity. Apologize quickly and sincerely, then give them space. It will blow over soon enough.
15. Be a Good Listener
Don’t ever underestimate the power of listening. One of the best things about being married is having someone by your side with whom you can open up unreservedly. You needn’t have all the answers, just a sympathetic ear.
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16. Be a Good Cheerleader
Being a good wife means being a good cheerleader! Let your spouse know you think they’re smart, capable, and good enough just the way they are. Sing their praises no matter the circumstances.
17. Find a Mutual Hobby
Couples that share hobbies or interests report being happier. It doesn’t have to be something significant. Enjoying movies and a good meal together is just as valid as flying planes together.
18. Spice Up the Intimacy
If sex is something that you and your partner both enjoy, make an effort to spice things up in the bedroom. You don’t need to go overboard, but keeping things fresh is fun. Experiment with lingerie, toys, and role-playing.
19. Be Kind to His Family — Even If It’s Hard
If you want to be the best wife, and your spouse loves their family, then kiss their behinds! Fake it if you must. Yes, they may be overbearing.
Sure, they may treat you like a second-class citizen. But part of being married is putting up with your better half’s loved ones.
In most cases, the frost clears eventually. And if not, just be glad you don’t have to deal with them daily.
20. Make Time for Fun
A lot of couples crumble because they never make time for fun. They get caught up in the daily grind, which only worsens when kids come along. So remember to hop off the train every once in a while and smell the proverbial roses.
21. Encourage Friendships
Don’t be one of those wives who forces your spouse to cut off certain friends. Resentment will grow like mold, and there’s a good chance you’ll one day find yourself in divorce court. Friendships are important.
You may not adore all your spouse’s buddies. Heck, some may even be a bad influence. Regardless, it’s essential to trust your partner and allow them to make decisions on that front.
22. Admit Mistakes
Whether you’re 9 or 92, admitting mistakes can be challenging. However, it’s an essential component of being a good wife.
Please don’t read us wrong; you’re not the only one who must fess up when they mess up. Your spouse should be doing the same.
23. Don’t Expect Your Spouse To Be a Mind Reader
Your partner may know you better than anyone on the planet. But that doesn’t mean they’re a mind reader. If something is bothering you, speak up!
Expecting your spouse to know exactly how you feel and what you need instinctively is unrealistic.
24. Be Thankful
When your spouse does something kind, thank them. Don’t assume they owe you things — big or small. Every so often, thank them for the mundane contributions to you and the family. Everyone likes to be appreciated!
25. Do Things Yourself
If you want something done your way, be prepared to do it yourself. Marriage is an ongoing exercise in flexibility and compromise.
For example, if you want your spouse to help clean up after dinner, don’t get in a tizzy if they don’t load the dishwasher the way you like. If it’s that important to you, handle it yourself.
26. Don’t Talk Trash to Your Friends
Of course, you’ll occasionally vent to your friends about little things that annoy you. However, try not to talk trash behind your partner’s back constantly. For starters, it’s uncomfortable for other people.
Secondly, if you’re having problems, it’s probably best to talk it out with a therapist.
27. Put Down Your Phone
Phones are a ubiquitous part of modern life. However, if you want to be a good partner, learn how to put it down at times.
How do you feel when someone is tapping away when you’re trying to talk with them? It’s rude! Just because you’re married doesn’t mean you don’t need to be considerate.
28. Have a Routine
Maintaining a routine is good for your physical and mental health — and it’s also great for a marriage. It decreases stress levels and keeps your practical life on track.
Pro Tip: There are few things more annoying than leaving for work when your spouse is still sleeping. So make sure your schedule involves getting up around the same time.
29. Keep His Secrets
Your spouse should be your confidant and you theirs. If they tell you a secret, keep it! Don’t tell your family or best friend. It could cause considerable marital stress and resentment if it’s ever revealed that you blabbed.
30. Learn Stress Relief Techniques
Learning how to help relieve your spouse’s stress is a useful skill. It could involve making their favorite meal or giving a foot massage.
Find the thing that works for them and become an expert. Your spouse will appreciate the effort, and it will infuse your home life with serenity.
31. Make the Appointments and Remember Birthdays
Yes, we should all be responsible for remembering certain things. But something happens when you say, “I do.”
Like magic, one person becomes the family scheduler — and nine times out of 10, it’s usually the wife. Accept it and embrace the role. Yes, it’s traditional, but it also saves a lot of aggravation.
Marriage can be a blast. So long as you and your partner work as a team, anything is possible. Because you want to be a better wife already means you’re a good one.
Taking the time to work on improving yourself and your relationship goes a long way in making your husband happy and your marriage strong.