Excerpt from The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work, Principle 1 — Enhance Your Love Maps, pp. 50-51.
By giving honest answers to the following questions, you will get a sense of the quality of your current love maps. For the most accurate reading of how your marriage is doing on this first principle, both of you should complete the following. Read each statement and write T for “true” or F for “false” by each number. Then add up the number of T’s when you are finished.
- I can name my partner’s best friends
- I can tell you what stresses my partner is currently facing.
- I know the names of some of the people who have been irritating my partner lately.
- I can tell you some of my partner’s life dreams.
- I am very familiar with my partner’s religious beliefs and ideas.
- I can tell you about my partner’s basic philosophy of life.
- I can list the relatives my partner likes the least.
- I know my partner’s favorite music.
- I can list my partner’s three favorite movies.
- My spouse is familiar with my current stresses.
- I know the three most special times in my partner’s life.
- I can tell you the most stressful thing that happened to my partner as a child.
- I can list my partner’s major aspirations and hopes in life.
- I know my partner’s major current worries.
- My spouse knows who my friends are.
- I know what my partner would want to do if he or she suddenly won the lottery.
- I can tell you in detail my first impressions of my partner.
- Periodically I ask my partner about his or her world right now.
- I feel that my partner knows me pretty well.
- My spouse is familiar with my hopes and aspirations. Date: _____ Score: ______
Scoring: Give yourself one point for each “true” answer.
10 or above: This is an area of strength for your marriage. You have a fairly detailed map of your spouse’s everyday life, hopes, fears, and dreams. You know what makes your spouse “”tick.” Based on your score you’ll probably find the love map exercises that follow easy and gratifying. They will serve as a reminder of how connected you and your partner are. Try not to take for granted this knowledge and understanding of each other. Keeping in touch in this way ensures you’ll be well equipped to handle any problem areas that crop up in your relationship.
Below 10: Your marriage could stand some improvement in this area. Perhaps you never had the time or the tools to really get to know each other. Or perhaps your love maps have become outdated as your lives have changed over the years. In either case, by taking the time to learn more about your spouse now, you’ll find your relationship becomes stronger.