The new year is exciting for most of us. If you’re like thousands of others, you’ve set goals to get in shape, begin a new diet, or try a new hobby to feel more energetic and confident. However, have you talked to your partner about your relationship resolutions? Since relationships are alive, they respond quickly to changes made by couples who are invested in creating a happier and closer union. You don’t need intense therapy to make this happen. Setting goals and celebrating your success together will lead to lasting positive changes in your relationship.
Limit screen-time (including your phone). Practicing a “no phones” time each day helps you focus on each other and improves couple communication.
Set and make a long-term goal. Whether it’s saving for an exclusive trip, adopting a pet, or purchasing a home, couples who budget, plan, and set a vision together feel closer and stronger together.
Designate time each day to talk to each other. Having a scheduled time each day to check in and communicate with each other builds trust and security. Use this time to share what made you feel joy or gratitude in your day.
Make time for date night once a week. Committing to a weekly date night and not using the kids as an excuse to stay home communicates to your partner that the two of you are a priority. Children who grow up with two parents who value each other and their relationship learn what healthy love looks and feels like.
Choose a bad habit you need to break as a couple. Every couple has at least one bad habit they’ve fallen into. When couples take action together to break it, they end up feeling stronger together. Schedule time to discuss the bad habit you want to break and brainstorm positive replacement habits that will be better for you and your relationship.
Set weekly intimacy dates. When life gets hectic, sex is the first area to suffer. Scheduling sex may not sound romantic, but couples who schedule sex have sex. Prioritizing physical intimacy reduces anxiety and depression and builds a stronger relationship.
Couples who are willing to try new ways of communicating and are committed to setting goals create happier relationships. Remembering to set clearly defined goals and working together to achieve them will leave you and your partner feeling stronger together in 2020. -Mary Jo Rapini