10 Little Ways to Show Your Spouse You’re Thankful for Them

10 Little Ways to Show Your Spouse You’re Thankful for Them


By Amanda Idleman

When we take time to express our gratitude for one another, we increase our level of connectedness with each other. There is something powerful about expressing to others what we find so special about them or when we share with them how their actions, big or small, have made a positive impact on our day. With that in mind, it’s so important that we take the time to share with our spouses how thankful we are for them. This intentional expression of love for each other helps to build intimacy in your relationship.

One fun way to get more creative about how you express your gratitude is to consider your spouse’s love language. Will your spouse feel more seen if you tell them how thankful you are for them (words of affirmation) or if you spend time with them to show how much you enjoy their presence (quality time)? All gratitude is special, but when we consider how our spouse best receives love, we can be even more effective in showing them that they are appreciated.

Thankfulness should be a part of our routines. Sometimes it’s exciting to go BIG in how we show our affection, but for the most part, it’s simple interactions that we commit to doing daily that keep our marriages tight. Things like hugging each other in the kitchen when you get home from work, saying thank you when one of you completes a household chore, or pausing to truly hear each other when you start to converse to unpack the events of the day.

Here are some little ways to show your spouse you are thankful for them:

1. Write them a love note.

thematic bible reading plan

Since I enjoy writing, love notes are one of my favorite ways to express myself to my loved ones! The intentionality of a note, even if it’s just a short and sweet moment of appreciation, really communicates love.

2. Surprise them with a thoughtful gift.

For the gift giver in your life, make them smile by surprising them with a thoughtful gift. They will beam with joy seeing that you thought of them in this special way. Stop by your favorite bakery to grab something you know will be delicious to share, grab flowers from the grocery store, pick up an item from your day’s outings to let your spouse know you were thinking of them, or grab dinner on the way home to relieve some of the end-of-day stress. This is one way to say, “I see you and I appreciate all you are doing.”

3. Complete a chore.

Married couple washing dishes together

Those of us who love checking things off our to-do list will feel so seen when that to-do list is tackled on our behalf! I do not lie when I tell you that if you have a partner that loves through acts of service, then coming home to a clean home may be the sexiest thing you will ever do for them. This act of service shows them that you are mindful of all the work they put into caring for your home. Serving is a great way to show gratitude to others! When your spouse runs out for work or to get some errands done, seize the opportunity to vacuum the floors and scrub the toilets. Hint to husbands: if you normally are not the one that cleans the house, this act of love will have an extra impact. Your wife will be so grateful for your willingness to literally get your hands dirty in order to serve her.

4. Plan some special time together.

It’s a lot easier to tell someone how much you appreciate them over an uninterrupted dinner together. If we want to be intentional about communicating love to each other, we have to create opportunities to remain connected. Put in the effort required to line up a babysitter, plan out where to eat dinner, and come up with a fun experience to try out together. Your spouse will be so thrilled for an unexpected time to be together. For quality time with people, anything done together is better than being alone.

5. Take time to offer physical affection to your partner.

Sometimes we don’t even need words to say thank you. A gentle pat on the back, a squeeze of a hand, or a warm hug can express so much gratitude to our partner. When you feel your heart swell with love for them, take time to show them physical affection. I personally love when my husband comes straight to me and gives me a big hug right when he gets home. It reminds me that he is on my team, and I matter to him. These tender moments help keep the love alive in your marriage.

6. Husbands, plan a family experience.

It’s well-documented that women tend to take on more than their fair share of family planning. Our brains are usually just wired to connect all the dots and think ahead, and we tend to be the ones that plan family experiences. Show your wife that you love how she takes the lead in this area by taking this off her plate every now and then. Take the initiative to determine a great way to experience the world together in a special way as a family. In turn, I am sure your wife will be so grateful for your initiative and leadership in this area.

7. Tackle a home project.

Couple smiling while working on home renovation

Appreciate your spouse by serving them. One special memory I have was when I took the kids out of town for a few days. I came home to a new chair rail and paint in our dining room. This project was incomplete for a while, and we just hadn’t made time to wrap it up. I felt so loved by my husband’s willingness to give up some of his very rare ‘downtime’ to finish a project that I had wanted to complete. Honor your spouse’s wishes and desires by taking on one of the projects on your list.

8. Express your gratitude publicly.

Share with the whole world what you love about your spouse! Now we have the ability to honor each other through social media; we can highlight our spouse’s talents when we are in the community or with family. These kind words carry extra weight when we are willing to honor each other publicly.

9. Plan a chance to relax.

Cozy couple fall date with coffee

This past weekend my husband and I took a very rare trip to the mountains without our kids. I surprised my husband with this outing because I wanted him to feel extra loved. As a part of our glorious weekend together, we got my husband’s first pedicure! For sure, this is something he would have never submitted to on his own, but since I was part of the plan, he gave in and enjoyed a good foot massage. Sometimes we need to give each other permission to really relax. Without my encouragement, he would have never thought to let a stranger rub his feet, but I don’t think he regretted his choice to relax with me one bit.

10. Allow your spouse extra time to rest.

Appreciation sometimes is best shown when we give each other space to rest. I remember those early days of parenting, being so tired I felt my limbs might fall off my body. All I wanted was a nap. If you see your spouse is in a season that requires extra giving and leads to more exhaustion, show them you care about their service by stepping in and letting them get some extra rest. You both will surely benefit from living with a more rested partner.

Expressing gratitude truly has the power to change our marriages. We need to both share with each other the special qualities we see in each other, and we also need to take time to thank God for the gift he has given us in the partner he placed in our lives. Your spouse is a gift to you; sometimes, they aren’t perfect gifts, but seeing them as a blessing will help your marriage continue to thrive.


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