When we're busy and life takes over, sometimes the most important things can end up taking a backseat, like our relationships. But it doesn't always have to be about grand gestures. Taking a little time each day to nourish your relationship is so important and can be done so easily. Try these 5 simple ideas to nourish your relationship from Cheryl Saban and see how much difference it makes!
When two people make the decision to formalize their relationship, either by marriage, or by telling friends and family that this is the person they want to share their life with, it’s a big deal. Even if you’ve been in a relationship for some time, the decision to make a formal commitment changes things up a bit. Just know that when you find yourself in this happy place, be grateful.
You’ll be sharing life with someone you deeply care for—someone who feels that way about you, too. A loving, strong relationship is a beautiful thing. You can tell when a couple has a strong connection. You can see it in their body language—the way they look at each other and the way they touch; the respect they have for each other and the affection they easily display.
When you can share your life with someone who enjoys the things you enjoy —someone who can laugh with you, be mindful of your feelings, and yes, stay sexy with you—and who also knows how important it is to maintain his or her individuality while at the same time cultivate a strong union as a couple, you have accomplished what most people on earth are striving for: a loving partnership. Protect it and nurture it with all your heart.
1. Keep a place both physically and spiritually for yourself. Private time is important for everyone. In this busy world, give yourself the luxury of quiet time, to reflect, to meditate, to breathe, to think—to be calm. When you can rest, and feel mindfully in the moment—even briefly—you’ll feel renewed, refreshed, and happier.
2. Remember to have date nights. Though we all have many obligations in life, take time regularly to be ALONE with each other.
3. Keeping a romance alive can be difficult if you find yourself competing with technical gadgets all the time. Phones, tablets, and other devices are no substitute for human, physical contact. Take time to look into each other’s eyes, listen attentively to each other, be present in the moment without distractions. It feels really good.
4. Find time for an occasional weekend away. Stepping outside your everyday routine can add spice to your life and give you time to rediscover each other. If it’s hard to plan a full weekend, try a “staycation” where you take each other to a local hotel for the night. Sometimes a little change like a candlelit dinner out, a toss in a different bed, and a stroll around a different block can reignite your spark.
5. Love each other unconditionally. Having unrealistic expectations of your partner, trying to change them, or expecting perfection won’t lead to happiness for either of you. Open your heart and your mind, without conditions or demands.
This extract has been taken from Cheryl Saban's Guide to a Happy and Mindful Life.
Illustrations by Daniel Haskett from The Power of Gratitude.