Take the Relationship Quiz

Cheers to a Blank Canvas: Unleashing Possibilities in 2024!

habits happy new year intentional resolutions Dec 26, 2023
couple dressed up at a wedding
How do you react when you hear someone making resolutions? Do you wish them good luck, give them the eye-roll or share your list?
I learned from James Clear's book, Atomic Habits, it's not will-power that helps us keep our goals, it's small changes that change our bad habits into good habits. Tiny changes or ‘atomic habits’ can lead to remarkable results. Making sudden large changes is the formula to burning out and quitting.
So if the idea of getting 1% better each day is more appealing, what can you do to be more intentional in your marriage? What would 1% look like?
In marriage, small irritations can arise from various everyday behaviors. While these may seem trivial individually, they can accumulate and contribute to tension if not addressed. It's important to communicate openly and work together to find solutions. Here are some common small irritations in marriages:

1. Messiness: Differing standards of cleanliness or organization can lead to irritation. Leaving personal items around, not cleaning up after oneself, or neglecting household chores can be sources of tension.

2. Communication Style: Variances in communication styles, such as interrupting, not actively listening, or not expressing feelings, can lead to frustration.

3. Punctuality: Tardiness or being consistently late for appointments or social events can be a source of annoyance.

4. Forgetting Details: Forgetting important dates, events, or tasks, such as anniversaries or household responsibilities, can be a source of frustration.

5. Phone or Screen Time: Excessive use of phones or other electronic devices, especially during quality time together, can be irritating.

6. Snoring: If one partner snores loudly, it can disrupt sleep and lead to irritation.

7. Eating Habits: Differences in dietary preferences or habits, like chewing loudly or eating in bed, can be sources of irritation.

8. Leaving Lights On: Forgetting to turn off lights or other household appliances when not in use can be a minor but consistent irritation.

9. Shopping Habits: Differences in spending habits or disagreement about financial priorities can lead to irritation.

10. Interrupting or Talking Over Each Other: This communication issue can make conversations feel frustrating and unproductive.

11. Sarcasm or Passive-Aggressive Behavior: Using sarcasm or indirect communication instead of addressing issues directly can be irritating.

12. Lack of Initiative: Feeling that one partner isn't taking the initiative or contributing equally to shared responsibilities can lead to frustration.

13. Different Temperatures: Disagreements about room temperatures or preferences for open/closed windows can be a recurring irritation.

14. Clutter: Accumulation of clutter or not putting things back in their proper place can be a source of tension.

15. Decision-Making Differences: Disagreements about how decisions are made, especially regarding important matters, can be frustrating.

Addressing these small irritations involves open communication, compromise, and a willingness to understand and accommodate each other's needs and preferences. Couples counseling/mentoring or communication workshops can also provide helpful tools for navigating these challenges.
I have a couple of closets in which I've hidden some clutter that I plan to attack but instead of cleaning out the whole closet, I'm going to address only 1% every day. Perhaps my efforts will turn into more effort one day but I'll take 1% every day over doing nothing.
I'd love to hear which number you plan to attack.


Learn new communication skills you can immediately apply in your marriage and some harder skills (with practice) that will transform your marriage.