5 New Year’s Resolutions That Will Improve Your Relationship
2021 has been a challenging year with concerns about our health, children, and new work environments. As you write your New Year’s resolutions for 2022, this is a wonderful time to focus on your relationship. What do you want to learn about yourself and each other to create deeper intimacy and understanding in your relationship? Every relationship can improve when both partners set their mindset to make changes in how they react and what they say to each other. When your tone and words become more appreciative and kinder, your partner’s reaction toward you softens and becomes more accepting.
If you and your partner are looking for resolutions that will strengthen your relationship, marriage therapists recommend these five.
1. Practice the 10 second rule. Seconds turn to minutes and minutes to hours. Most of us don’t think of the power within a gentle touch; a hug or kiss lasting 10 seconds or more makes couples feel closer. A quick hug is better than no hug, so begin the 10 second rule in your relationship and watch your relationship change.
2. Practice spending some time apart. Stress increases and intimacy collapses when partners spend too much time together. You deserve some time apart to pursue your own interests and maintain your own friendships. This helps you grow and make necessary changes that will benefit your partner
3. Take frequent screen breaks with your partner. A Pew Research survey found that 51% of people who are married, living together, or in a committed relationship say their partner is distracted with screen use when they are trying to engage with them. Taking phone breaks may seem simple, but until you practice it, you won’t fully realize how much time you devote to your phone. For most couples, taking an hour or two each day to shut the phone off and be with each other minimizes relationship arguments.
4. Tell your partner thank you more often. This is extremely simple but has profound effects on the way your partner feels about you. When you say thank you to your partner for simple things around the house or what they do at work, they know you are aware of all they do. They feel more important and valued in your life.
5. Date nights are good but creating novel experiences is better. Shaking up your routine by trying something unpredictable creates a learning experience, which is important for couples strengthening their relationship. A date night participating in an escape room, rock climbing, or a cooking class is the best way to create adventure and surprise in your relationship.
Most of us make resolutions and expect our relationship to improve naturally, but that isn’t how relationships work. Make 2022 your year to ask your partner how they feel in the relationship and what you can each do differently to make the other feel loved.