No two relationships are alike and there are, of course, no sure-fire paths to happily ever after. There are, however, some habits that are associated with relationship fulfilment and Jess joined her friends at The Morning Show to share a few of these rituals.
Some of these may come as a surprise and others may not. How many of these are a regular part of your routine? And can you make some small adjustments to integrate more of these rituals into your life?
Obviously there is no one-size-fits-all approach to love or fulfilment, so adjust and add to this list to make it work for you. Check out the video and notes below!
1. First up you say happy couples walk hand in hand or side by side – why does that make a difference?
Physical affection offers so many health benefits from lower blood pressure to easing pain and reducing stress. And when you make an effort to be close to one another, you may even experience physiological synchronization as your heart and breath rates align. Now, of course, if you’re walking down a snowy sidewalk today to get some exercise, you may not be able to walk hand in hand the whole time. You’ll probably want to step out of the way of passersby especially given the snow on the sidewalk across the country.
2. Happy couples hug each other as soon as they see each other after work – is that every day?
If you can, do it every day. Set aside an extra 30 seconds before you come in to pay attention to your partner — not the dog or the kids or your phone. Let them know they’re a priority. For anyone who has ever had a dog, you know they come running with the tail wagging and they just can’t get enough of you. Show that same enthusiasm to your partner. If you change nothing else in your relationship, change your greetings and goodbyes to make them warmer and more purposeful. It’s a tiny thing that can add up over time.
3. Do a ‘Weather Check’ during the day – what does that mean?
Check in with them! Send a text to ask how their workday is going or simply ask how they’re feeling. Let them know you’re thinking of them. When you think about a loved one from a distance it can attenuate negative thoughts and reduce the effect of stress. So even if you’re working at home, take a moment to check in with your partner mid-day. It’s a good excuse to get up and stretch which we’re now being told we need to do for 20 seconds every 20 minutes.
4. Usually talking behind someone’s back is a bad idea but you say talk behind your partner’s back can be a good idea?
Compliments will get you everywhere. And they offer benefits to both the giver and receiver. Even if they don’t hear you talking positively behind their back, the simple act of complimenting them can help to cement your bond.
5. Finally, they ignore the old saying to never go to bed angry and they go to bed mad!
You cannot resolve every single argument on the spot. And you certainly can’t will away negative feelings including anger. So you may go got bed angry at times and that’s okay. But remember that just because you’re upset doesn’t mean you can’t be loving. Even if you’re angry, you can reach out and let your partner know you care. Kiss them goodnight. Hold their hand. Let them know you’re upset, but you love them and you want to work it out.
I don’t feel good about this argument, but I do feel good about this relationship and I know we’ll work it out. I love you.
It’s also important to note that not every conflict is resolvable. Sometimes you’ll have let things go. If you’re arguing before bed, you might want to ask yourself if continuing the conversation will interfere with a decent night’s sleep (and potentially adversely affect your health and functioning the next day).
Read more about whether or not it’s okay to go to bed angry here.