Lessons from a Marriage Retreat

marriage marriage retreat relationship May 21, 2024
Marriage Retreat

Last week we did our first marriage retreat - eight couples, four nights, three days on the beautiful island of Puerto Rico! It was a significant success, not least being we learned a bunch from what worked and what we can add to increase it's effectiveness next time (watch this space!).

Here's a couple of our key highlights plus resources that will really help you in your own relationships and marriage.

1. Prioritize intentional fun together

When was the last time you and your wife/husband went out and played together? Remember when you were dating or 'just friends' how much time was spent doing random things simply because you enjoyed being together. Now that you ARE together (and some of you have been together a LOOONG time), re-kindle the connection and intimacy by prioritizing fun together. Make sure it's a work-free zone then experiment with all the things you can do. Here's a few ideas:

- find a local beach or park and go for a walk, holding hands

- grab a set of cards or a board game and compete

- check out the fun ideas at The Adventure Challenge

- grab a blanket and some snacks and have a picnic... in your back yard... or the living room floor

- join a ballroom or line-dancing class at your local gym

- post your ideas for more fun in the comments below

2. Grow together

What are your personal growth goals for this year? What about having some growth challenges TOGETHER? This could be something random and fun like learning a new language on Duolingo, or something more serious like taking a risk together that gets your out of your comfort zone. The key is TOGETHER. Here's some ideas

- Volunteer together for a local (or international) service organization eg. your local city mission

- Enroll in a Toastmasters course and learn to present better

- Read a book together and talk about what you are learning

- Get on the same bible reading plan and discuss what you are hearing God say

- Buy a DIY project kit and build it together

- Find a conference on a topic that interests you 

- Learn about the outdoors

- Find a marriage retreat/conference and jump right in. 

- XOMarriage.com

- LoveAfterMarriage.com

- Gottman couples retreats

- HeaveninBusiness.com retreat


BOOK - Seven Principles of Making Marriage Work by Dr Gottman Summary here

BOOK - Seven Secrets to an Awesome Marriage by Dr. Kim Kimberling

BOOK - Keep Your Love On by Danny Silk


- Text your spouse "Hey! want to do something fun tonight?" or similar

- Go make a memory and talk about how you can do this more!