Responsibilities such as work, kids, finances, errands and chores, along with other mundane daily activities become the most common topic of conversation over time. Although these things need to be discussed, they should not be the only things you and your partner have to talk about. Nor should they be the only things you and your partner do with one another.
Grocery shopping is not a date. Neither is having dinner together watching TV, or talking about schedules and task-lists, or hearing about your child’s play date. These activities may be enjoyable to do together, but it is important to also partake in activities that keep you and your partner stimulated and connected. Select types of activities you and your partner find mutually interesting and do them together. A few examples include:
- Taking cooking, art, dance, acting or language classes
- Attending the opera, ballet, plays or musicals
- Visiting local art galleries and museums
- Enjoying cocktails at a jazz bar, lounge or dance club
- Joining a sports team (as long as you’re both at the same level) or fitness class
- Trying ethnic cuisines or trendy, new restaurants
- Biking, walking or jogging in your neighborhood or in a scenic area in your city
- Volunteering your time for a cause or at a shelter, food bank or hospital
The type of activity is less important than ensuring you and your partner are spending time alone (no children, no friends or family). Alone time is valuable and sacred. Aim to execute this plan no less than twice a month. Being in a relationship is a privilege which requires effort, and should be considered a priority, just like any other responsibility you may have.
As responsibilities consume most of our daily lives, it is easy for a relationship to become more functional, less passionate, less exciting and more stagnant. By being involved in activities of mutual interest, you create the occasion to spend quality time with one another. This will not only help strengthen your love connection, but it will also benefit you individually by being a healthy distraction from work/life stressors and keep each of you growing and learning.
Life is about living and learning. This is how we tend to evolve as individuals. If you include your partner in your personal growth process, you and your partner will grow together and not apart. After all, the couple that plays together will stay together!