The New Year has everyone thinking of ways to improve something about their lives. While New Year’s Resolutions are often focused on creating new individual routines, such as regular diet or exercise, couples should remember that enhancing their relationship routines is a great way to improve both health and life satisfaction. So, how might couples take the first step in enhancing their relationship routines?
First, it is important to understand why couple routines and rituals are an important focus. Research shows that couples benefit from establishing and participating in regular activities that add meaning to their relationship. When couples fail to make intentional efforts to spend meaningful time together, they tend to drift toward isolation from one another. This slow drift apart can be hard to detect amidst the noise and distractions of modern, busy family life.
Below we are sharing some ideas to add in some positive routines or traditions into your couple relationship during 2023. There is no need to try them all at once. Start with a practice that feels attainable to you, given your unique situation.
Actions to try out
- Kiss each other hello and good bye
- Spend some uninterrupted time chatting at the start or end of the day
- Enjoy something relaxing together in the evening (e.g., a leisurely walk, tea, hot chocolate, snuggling under a comfy blanket)
- Engage in a hobby together
- Connect to the world as a couple via time in nature, community groups, or faith groups
- Go on a date
- Decide as a couple how you would like to celebrate important events such as anniversaries, birthdays, holidays
Another great way to kickstart the enhancement of your relationship is to participate in a Couples Retreat hosted by University of Maryland Extension. The retreat is focused on business-owning couples, especially in the agriculture industry. The retreat will cover information like the content in this blog, as well as a variety of other couples enhancement activities. Furthermore, we will provide information on business financial planning and succession/estate planning for business-owning couples. All couples are welcome to attend. Click here to find more information about cost and registration.
This post contributed by UME Faculty Specialist Alex Chan.