The winter months bring shorter daylight hours, less outdoor recreation for many, our marriages can be lulled to sleep if we aren’t careful. If you’re experiencing the hypnotic feeling of being in a “relationship rut” that you can’t escape I have five ideas for you to use as a wake up call for your most significant relationship.
Relationship fitness checkup:
What are your “checking in” rituals? How do you make contact with your lover during the day? Is the texts all operational like “pick up some milk” or are you checking in dangerously with flirting, being a little playful, like “I can’t wait too “really be” with you this evening”? When you cross paths after significant hours apart do you place everything on pause and hug and kiss, or do you almost brush by each other in a rush to take care of the next task.
Relationship fitness challenge #1
Find private sexy ways to check in during the day and create new exciting rituals that cause you to look forward to putting everything on pause while you connect for a few seconds when crossing paths after being apart.
How curious are you about your partner? Do you hold on to a false belief that you know your lover so well that you no longer need to talk or ask questions. Be careful of developing the hypnotic sense of security that you “already know” how the conversation will go. If you have been lulled away from real communication it’s time to wake that relationship muscle up and begin talking again.
Relationship fitness challenge #2
Using the timer on your phone set a stop watch for one minute. You will each take a turn speaking and listening for one minute. After the first minute of speaking the listener will recap what they heard without any defense or alternate points of view. The idea is for listener to simply listen and “understand” the partner. Then the roles are switched the listener speaks to the same subject for a minute. The listener listens and recaps what they heard speaking only to understand never to alter the point of view.
The real connection, real intimacy, of all relationships is being completely understood and accepted.
Do you take time each week “off the grid”?
Relationship challenge #3
Five hour dates off the grid with your spouse is a way to recharge the relationship and refocus your marital brand. Leaving the world of people having minute to minute access to you and turning your full attention to each other can pump nourishment into a starved relationship. You will soon find it so valuable that you will start taking full weekends off the grid.
Everyone makes mistakes. We argue over silly things, we find it necessary to be right about issues that really don’t matter and we do things wrong that hurt our spouse. All of these issues can be repaired if we follow the simple steps of repentance that we learned in kindergarten.
Relationship challenge #4
Be accountable, say you’re sorry, repair a wrong, make a new agreement and keep it. All of these ingredients allow for couples to move forward with renewed energy and commitment to be better tomorrow than they are today.
Do you share what you’re truly grateful for? Being vulnerable is valuable to every relationship. Sharing intimate moments and expressing gratitude is a key to being safe and free to speak when things are tough.
Relationship challenge #5
Each week find six different things that you are grateful for and share them. Be specific, be honest, be vulnerable.
Relationship fitness requires couples to be intentional about the commitment they share. Meaning and purpose drive the relationship to deeper, richer, more intimate places as we do the little things to keep the relationship alive and vibrant.