Remember those dating years and how easy it was to spend hours lost in conversation? Curiosity about each other allowed time to pass so quickly. Unfortunately, the desire to get to know each other wanes as the years roll by. So, finding creative ways to connect and engage with your spouse becomes an unbearable task in light of all the responsibilities of work and parenting weighing on us. This is where many couples find themselves: bored, living on autopilot, longing for some connection, but stuck in a hypnotic cycle of wash, rinse, repeat.

Sadly, statistics reveal that loneliness inside marriage is reaching critical levels. We propose it’s mainly because we’ve lost the art of asking good questions to evoke conversations that connect us. In this day and age, it seems like most of us are far more concerned with sharing what is on our minds than listening to others.

Think about what a question does. Asking a question expresses your curiosity and desire to know more. When you ask a question about your spouse’s dreams, preferences, feelings, and memories, it communicates that you are looking for connection.

The number one way to build emotional intimacy is asking open-ended questions.

Need a role model? Look no further than Jesus! He asked really good questions, didn’t He? It’s incredible how much He was able to draw out the desires, fears, and motivations of others with simple questions. What a great example for how to engage with your spouse!

So, will asking these questions be worth the potential awkwardness? Well, it’s only awkward because it’s unfamiliar, meaning if you haven’t engaged in asking each other good questions, you will experience the discomfort of feeling unskilled. Embrace it. Get out of your comfort zone, ask the Holy Spirit to guide you, and take the risk of being vulnerable. Listen with empathy as your spouse shares what’s on his or her heart, and even if the response isn’t what you were hoping for, have an open mind.

Here Are Some Connecting Questions to Get You Started:

• When you come home from work, what can I do or say that will make you feel loved?

• What do you wish you could tell yourself 10 years ago?

• What compliment would you really like to hear from me?

• In what ways has our relationship changed you?

• If you could change anything about the way you were raised, what would it be and why?

• What are some of the talents, strengths, and gifts God has given you?

• What boundaries can we make that will protect us from spending too much time on our phones?

• If you didn’t have to work, what would do with your life?

• Do you feel like I try my best to understand your views, feelings, and opinions? Why or why not?

• What’s your favorite way to spend the weekend?