If you were to balance your life hours in a ledger, how many would actually be spent with your partner?
While the demands of work, home, and childcare are real and necessary, far too many people unintentionally walk away from their relationship and forget to invest in it again. This can gradually wear down the connection between the two of you until it barely feels like you’re together anymore.
How do you prevent this from happening? You need some marriage help!
Be intentional about coming back to your relationship at the end of the day — and not just physically. Another phrase for this is “showing up.”
But what does it look like to “come back” and “show up,” and how can you and your partner get in the groove?
Start With Yourself: Check In
“Showing up” means you share emotions, thoughts, and experiences with your partner to deepen your connection. This process becomes much easier when you’re able to acknowledge and accept your own!
Pause at least once a day to check in with yourself: “What are three words for how I feel right now? How am I doing? What was my high of the day? My low?” Don’t judge yourself as you respond.
After some practice, you may find it more natural to share and check in with your partner, too.
Set Firm Boundaries with Work and Technology
Widespread working from home for the past year has blurred work-life boundaries even more than in the past. But most of us don’t have life-or-death jobs. Is sending an email at 6:02 PM versus 8:02 AM really going to ruin your career?
Whenever possible, clock out and leave work at work. In our current situation, for many of us that means deciding that a particular time signals the end of work and “checking out” until the next morning.
You may also find yourselves melded to technology during the pandemic. Make a point to put down your phone, turn off the TV, and face your partner. Do something that engages both of you: games, puzzles, crafts, reading the same book and sharing opinions as you go — it doesn’t matter what it is as long as you are engaging each other.
Come Back to Your Relationship in Small Ways
Even if you’re in the middle of a meeting, say “thank you” when your partner brings you a snack. If you like the shirt they chose that day, compliment them. Small strokes of encouragement and affirmation build up your bond over time.
Seek Marriage Help
Since every relationship is different, you may have your own specific questions or roadblocks that need to be dealt with. If you ever feel like you need marriage help from a professional, get in touch with Norene Gonsiewski and Tim Higdon.