Let’s face it. Resolutions are easy to make, tough to keep. When you make them as a team with your partner, you have a built-in support system that automatically gives you a better chance to succeed. And when you strive together toward the same goals, your relationship deepens. Here are some ideas to consider:
- Touch base regularly. Schedule a time every day that’s sacrosanct. When you can connect with your partner to share the joys and sorrows of the day. When you’re both crazy busy, this can be difficult to achieve. But it doesn’t have to take long—five minutes may do it for some. It’s the one time during the day when you put your relationship first. Make sure that if you have to postpone, you have a damn good reason that your partner understands. And don’t let it happen often.
- Break some bad habits. It’s difficult to do on your own. So support each other. Be accountable to each other. Cheer each other on. And make measurable goals. If you are on day three of not biting your nails, report it to your partner. If he has been to the gym twice this week, give him a pat on the back. Share your setbacks, too. And understand there will be some. This business of breaking bad habits is not easy, but it can be done. And it’s much easier with a partner.
- Take care of business. Make sure your financial house is in order. Review your finances to ensure you’re on target and that your plan is still in line with your goals. Make the appropriate adjustments. Set a realistic budget for the upcoming year and devise a plan to keep on track. Look over your will and check to see that all the details will still pertain in 2017. And if you don’t have one, for heaven’s sake, resolve to get one.
- Think before you talk. This is not an easy resolution to keep, but your relationship will be the better for it if you can. Try to be present when your partner is talking and focus on what he says. When you are fully engaged you are less likely to speak without thinking. Sometimes something unsaid is the wisest course of action. Save your battles for the most important issues. And then be sure you’re respectful and polite. Avoid nasty sarcasm at all costs. It comes perilously close to contempt, and contempt is poisonous to any relationship.
Of course, you should create whatever resolutions are right for you. The above suggestions are just that—suggestions to get you thinking. Not all of them will apply to you. And you don’t want to make too many resolutions—that’s setting yourself and your partner up for failure. Just chose one or two so you can focus on what’s most important. And then work together to achieve them.
Nancy Travers is an Orange County Counseling professional. If you need safe, effective counseling services, please get in touch. You can reach her here: http://www.nancyscounselingcorner.com/contact-us.