New Year’s Resolutions For My Marriage

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Last year, I didn’t make a New Year’s resolution.

To be fair, the end of 2014 was a pretty crazy time in the Hergenrader household. We not only had to move out of our apartment temporarily over the holidays, but then I broke my wrist trying out my new Christmas rollerblades and ended up needing surgery. Our goal for 2015 was pretty much just to survive it.

And—despite a few unexpected challenges—we did survive. We even managed to visit our families on the mainland and attend two of our best friends’ weddings. Even if we felt like we were flying by the seat of our pants most of the time, I have to admit that last year was pretty great.

But now, as I look forward to a new year that will (hopefully) be a little less crazy than the last twelve months, I’ve got some goals that I am serious about accomplishing. So in honor of actually having two fully functioning wrists this year on New Year’s Day, I present my resolutions for 2016:

1. Make Date Night a Thing

When my husband first suggested the idea of scheduling a regular date night with me a couple months ago, I sort of brushed him off. Since we don’t have kids and carpool to work every day, I didn’t think that we needed to go out of our way to spend more time with each other. As our schedules have continued to get busier, however, I’m starting to see how hard it really is for us to find time together without distractions. I’m not sure yet if we will be scheduling date nights every week or only once or twice a month, but I am committed to being more intentional about making time for my husband and focusing on our marriage in the new year.

 2. Fix Our Budget…and Actually Stick to It This Time

As a former budgeting freak, I am ashamed to admit how far we have fallen off the saving money train lately. Thomas and I technically still have a budget, but we’ve made a million and one excuses for not sticking to it: the expense tracking app we have isn’t working; we had to spend money on airline tickets; we overspent because it’s the holidays, etc. The list goes on and on. But since our rent will be changing when we move to our new house next month, we’ve decided to view this move as an opportunity to reconfigure our finances and get serious about building our emergency fund.

 3. Exercise Because It’s Good for Me and Those Around Me

Going to the gym is important for me not so much because of my physical fitness, but for my mental and emotional health. It’s incredible how much twenty minutes of cardio or lifting weights can positively impact my anxiety and help me focus for the whole day. Exercise makes me a better wife, employee and friend. In 2016, wearing the nice running shorts that I just got for Christmas, I am resolving to doing some form of exercise three times a week, rain or shine. If I get buff in the process, that’s a bonus—but this is really a commitment to taking care of my overall well-being and my relationships with others.

 4. Get Plugged Into Ministry

Even before we were married, Thomas and I were talking about getting involved in some sort of community service project together. Sad to say, we still haven’t made much time for service in our marriage so far. This year, though, instead of just waiting for the right service opportunity to fall into our laps, we want to be pro-active about finding a ministry where we can work side-by-side in service for others. The goal in our marriage has always been about reaching out to others, so in the midst of a lot of New Year’s plans that are focused on bettering ourselves, this resolution is about trying to improve the world around us.

I don’t know about you, but I’ve got a good feeling about this upcoming year. I hope that by sharing my goals publicly and with the I Believe in Love community, I’ll feel a bit more pressure to stick to my plans. I know that I’ve got some hefty resolutions this year, but I think with God’s help—and my husband’s support—I can really make some good changes in my life and marriage in 2016. So, what are your resolutions?

Happy New Year, everyone!

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