Last week I talked about making resolutions as a couple to revitalize your relationship. Suggestions included real communicating—not just talking; trading compliments for complaints; and being honest, emotionally and every other way.
When you have a number of ideas from which to choose, actually working on and keeping resolutions can be difficult. You should focus on those issues that are most important and that will do your relationship the most good. Usually two or three resolutions are the most you can hope to tackle. More than that, and you are setting yourself up for failure.
But let’s say you’ve already conquered honesty, communications, and taking care not to criticize. What else might you think about as resolutions?
Pay attention. How often does your partner just talk past you because your mind is elsewhere. You’re texting or you’re emailing or you’re multitasking in a myriad of different ways. Life is distracting and you both are busy. That’s why when you’re together, it’s important that you’re mindful of one another.
Put technology aside. Pull the ear buds out. Put the cell phone down. After all, when your partner is with you and you’re spending that time on your phone, it signals your phone is more important than he is. When you give him your full attention, you are creating an opportunity to connect and deepen your relationship. You can’t have a meaningful moment is you’re texting someone else.
Pay attention, too, to how your partner reacts when you’re with him. Real connection takes more than conversation. It means noticing what your partner is telling you with his body language. And what is he telling you with his tone of voice? Or when he agrees with you half-heartedly? Learn to know and understand what he’s really trying to tell you beyond his words.
Have Fun Together. How hard can this be? Yet lives get busy, routines get in a rut, and before you know it, you’ve forgotten to have a good time. Resolve to do things together that you both enjoy and schedule a time to do them. Maybe you even establish a standing Fun Date.
Try something new. Travel someplace neither of you has been, even if it’s a hike down the road. It doesn’t have to be somewhere exotic or expensive. Or take a class together at your local community college. Or just go to a new restaurant. Exploring new things together is a great way to build a stronger bond.
Another way is to do something meaningful together. Determine a cause that’s important to you both and find a way to participate together. A friend and her husband visit the elderly and read to them or just chat. Giving back to your community makes you feel good, and when you do it together, that great feeling is multiplied by two.
And for heaven’s sake, don’t forget to do something for the pure fun of it.
Have Great Sex Frequently and Often. It seems crazy that you have to make a resolution to have sex. But couples sometimes get stuck in a down cycle when sex is a distant memory. Or their enthusiasm has waned. Or they’re working like beasts and fall into bed exhausted every night, too tired for sex.
If sex is painful or not as pleasant as you’d like it to be, resolve to find a professional who can help you. This is not something you should let slide—it’s important to have good sex. So make sure you get the help you need. Both of you will benefit from the result.
Good sex is worth the effort. It enriches your life and bonds you mentally as well as physically. It doesn’t need to be spontaneous, although that’s fine, too. But most of us get caught up in our lives and need to make a plan. Note it on your calendar. When you prioritize sex, your relationship becomes more intimate. And stronger and healthier.
Nancy Travers is an Orange County Counseling professional. If you need safe, effective counseling services, please get in touch. You can reach her here: https://www.nancyscounselingcorner.com/contact