Life as we know it is constantly changing. No longer is work confined to traditional daytime hours. The ability to be in contact constantly with work and the world in general due to the proliferation of phones/mobile computing devices means that there are continuous demands for your attention.
Add in relationships, friendships, parenting, and personal activities the potential for overwhelm is obvious.
Do you find that to cope with the constant demands on your time you focus on those things that scream the loudest and push other things into the background?
Is your relationship one of those things that get pushed into the background?
Without a focus on our relationships, cracks start to appear, and without attention, the cracks will keep getting bigger until the relationship breaks.
Without a focus on our relationship, cracks start to appear, and without attention, the cracks will keep getting bigger until the relationship finally breaks or disintegrates into something that you hate coming home for.
So what strategies are available to us to maintain and strengthen our relationships in a time-challenged world? Fortunately, there are several that are effective if we are willing to make some small changes.
In this two-part series, we will be showing you some of these strategies that can help strengthen your relationship in the midst of your busy life. In this post, we’ll address the first seven strategies.
These strategies are simple and time-efficient. These are strategies that have worked effectively in the relationships of our clients.
Connection tips for Busy People
Text during the workday – Texting is a simple form of contact. I do not recommend the use of texting to work through problems as texting is easily misunderstood. However, for a simple message such as “how are you going?” followed by a smiley face, etc., it becomes highly beneficial in showing that you are thinking of your partner and you care.
What busy things can you do together – As I have already said, life is incredibly demanding when you consider the number of things that we must do daily. There is a form of intimacy that occurs in a relationship based on doing things together with a common goal. It gives us a sense of togetherness and gives us time to talk about other things. The question that you need to ask yourself is “What tasks can you do together?”. Since these tasks are things that need to be done during the day/week, you might as well get the extra benefit from doing them together.
10-minute talk – We all look for some quality time with our partners. I define quality time as the time in which we are solely focused on each other and are not distracted by other things. Many people say I don’t have time for that. Can you find 10 minutes per day? If you can, take that 10 minutes to sit down with your partner and talk. There need to be no other distractions such as phones or television or kids. If you have children, do this after they have gone to bed. The only activity that you can do while talking is to have a drink. You can go longer than 10 minutes, but 10 minutes is the minimum. Clients of mine who have done this exercise find it highly beneficial.
Touch – Touch is one of the four levels of intimacy. This skin to skin contact releases feelgood chemicals in the body. Human beings are meant to touch. That doesn’t mean that we must do the long passionate hugs all the time. Touch can refer to anything such as a quick touch of the hand on your partner’s shoulder, holding hands, squeezing hands cuddling, and so on. It can be short, but doing it is effective.
Hello and goodbye – Just hearing your partner saying something to you, which is pleasant, shows that they are interested in interacting with you. This becomes a point of connection.
Show appreciation – Everybody needs a little bit of appreciation. We do so much to keep our household and lives running. Just hearing some words of appreciation directed towards us helps us feel connected, noticed and not isolated.
Talk about how you are feeling – Being able to open up emotionally is another one of the levels of intimacy. When you can talk about how you are feeling, it allows you to open up rather than closing down and being guarded. It also gives your partner important information about where you are emotionally. It allows your partner to respond and ask you what you need at that time and to be the one that provides that. The process gives a sense of connection.
So, there are seven simple strategies that you can put in place in your relationship from this point forward. These are very time efficient strategies, and you should be able to incorporate them even in a busy lifestyle.
Our next post will introduce you to eight more strategies. These are next level strategies in that they will require a little bit more effort, but the payoff from incorporating them into your relationship will be enormous.
We help you to design your relationship your way and then use our expertise to show you how to rapidly achieve it.
We show you how to make subtle changes that will bring you the results that you want in your relationship
For busy couples, we have developed the Reignite the Spark Program a self–paced learning program supported by face to face counselling/coaching designed to assist couples in discovering how to heal the cracks in their relationship despite a busy lifestyle.