Camaraderie is natural when a couple starts their married life. Life’s an adventure – everything is new and shiny. Normal life seems a bit brighter because you’re sharing it with someone you love.

Do you remember your first few months of marriage?

Some people have their most challenging moments within those first twelve months – others still have a glow for a year or two, before some jarring discomfort sets in.

In every case, keeping the value of camaraderie alive will spark your marriage all through that first year, that first decade and all the way to a half century and more!

Don’t let your sense of camaraderie fade!  

Camaraderie is a value with a few nuances – one of them is the introduction of closeness…  And it’s the deliberate pursuit of closeness which will keep the camaraderie in the relationship strong.

Camaraderie and Closeness

Camaraderie means a spirit of familiarity and closeness; chumminess.

Consider the importance of closeness.

Closeness means familiarity; a feeling of being intimate and belonging together.

This closeness is at the heart of a strong marriage. While I know some will zero in on the part of ‘being intimate’ – and that is important – I encourage you not to lose sight of the last part:

– ‘belonging together.’

It’s about being friendly – to each other. (What a concept, huh? Being friends with your spouse!)

How to add camaraderie to your marriage.

Here are eight ways to promote the value of camaraderie to enhance your marriage:

1)    Develop a shared vision or purpose for your life. Nothing fosters camaraderie like a common goal and a reason to collaborate together. Often a vision comes from knowing your shared values as a couple.

Use the Value of Camaraderie to be close to your spouse - the rewards are satisfaction of being a team and a life-long friend2)    Make time for quality time. Sitting watching TV together doesn’t count. What are you planning and how are your being purposeful for your time together? (Maybe this is where a regular date-night comes in?)

3)    Face-to-face communication. This is the best way to tackle issues together and brainstorm in an open, respectful environment. You’ll also feel progress as you build off of each other’s ideas. If you find communicating with your spouse difficult (and who doesn’t at certain points in a marriage), then I recommend a fellow blogger’s website – Brian is a counselor on the front lines, helping people build, improve and restore their marriages.

4)    Allow for independence. Camaraderie happens when two accomplished people join forces. As in every team sport, players have certain strengths. They all practice their strengths independently, yet come together to make a strong team. It’s no different in marriage.

5)    Break bread together. Yes, sharing a meal is a great catalyst for building camaraderie. And it often includes laughter, the sharing of stories, or even just peaceful moments together with no expectations. Stop eating on-the-go, or in front of the TV – sit down at a fully-dressed dining table, or at a picnic table in a park, or a spot you found when you were dating… face each other, and experience life together as you eat.

6)    Regular meetings. Check in with each other – at least weekly – to be sure you and your spouse are aligned. Never assume! Be clear and deliberate with about activities, potential issues, and preferred outcomes. The busier your schedule, the more important this time becomes. Use your shared values to make decisions. Those shared values in a husband and wife team are like signposts along the way. It’s easier to say “no” or “yes” if you know your shared values as a couple! (click here to learn how to discover  your own shared values in marriage)

7)    Help out when needed. While you respect the independence of your spouse, camaraderie is built when you respond to a need, shore up a weakness, or when you stand beside each other in success and failure. No special recognition is needed – you’re a team.

8)    Encourage your spouse. Often what is needed most to feel close, to feel familiar with each other, and intimate, is encouragement. Use all five ways to encourage your spouse.

Making your spouse, your friend – Using the Value of Camaraderie

The rewards of fostering camaraderie are significant. You’ll not only enjoy the satisfaction of being part of a successful team, you’ll have a lifelong friend.


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Discover Your Values as a Couple

How can you make sure those values you live – together as husband and wife– are consistent, cohesive, and have a lasting impact?

Values help you prioritize - decide when and what to do in a situation, and then remain consistent in all your decisions.

Check out the guide and workbook for couples!

Also includes an audio version!