Juggling friends, family and work commitments often leaves partners struggling to find time for each other. Check out these tips for a bit of help putting ‘couple time’ back on the agenda.
Avoid putting too much pressure on your partner. As relationships develop it’s normal for couples who once spent all their time together to feel a need to carve out some independence for themselves.
Don’t take your partner’s need for ‘me’ time as rejection. It’s unlikely you’ll both always want the same amount of individual and together time – sometimes balancing the two can be tricky.
Reminisce together on the happy times you spent in those early days. It’ll remind you just why you fell in love and help you think of ways to recreate some of those special fuzzy moments.
Try to commit to at least an hour of ‘couple’ time each week. That’s time without children, friends or family members when the focus is solely on each other. Put it in the diary and let it be a time you both look forward to. Couple time should be a high priority event that doesn’t get trumped for anything less than an emergency.
Find a babysitter. Or if the budget won’t stretch to one, put the kids to bed and schedule an ‘at-home’ date night for a little later in the evening.
Don’t bring up the negatives in your relationship on a date night – there’s no quicker way to kill the mood and leave you feeling disconnected. If there are burning issues that need to be addressed save them for a scheduled catch up where the point is to focus on overcoming any obstacles in your relationship.
Celebrate anniversaries and significant dates. They’re an opportunity to look at how you’ve grown both as individuals and as a couple, and remind you of the things that first brought you together. Try to do something special for your partner on these occasions; you don’t need to spend money, just think of something that’ll put a smile on their face.
Develop time management skills. If you want to spend time with your partner, but just can’t find enough hours in the day try to follow these four steps: Plan ahead – 10 minutes spent thinking about how to maximize your time over the day can save you hours. Delegate – if someone can do something for you that will create time for your relationship, let them. It could be as simple as getting the kids to wash up after dinner. Say no – simple, but effective. Cut back – you may enjoy them all but too many activities can put your relationship at risk, pick only the most important.
Do some homebuilding. They might sound horribly like chores, but decorating, gardening, cooking a meal, or doing the food shopping together can actually build intimacy – and it gets things done in half the time!