Today is January third. Everyone has slept off the hangovers of New Years Day and are back to the grind of work, shuffling kids back and forth, and deciding what to make the family for dinner. And because it’s January third It’s also the day that most people are looking ahead to the rest of 2018 and making resolutions. Not the kind you make on December 31st when you’re with your friends drinking. Those are the empty ones you know you’re probably not going to keep. The ones you make on January 3rd are the ones that you actually think about now that you’be been back doing the grind and are thinking about what you really want. It’s also the time that you go to Facebook or Twitter or whatever social platform you’re on and write down these goals for the world to see. Something about posting it makes it feel official. And the support and encouragement you receive from your friends makes you feel like you’re actually going to accomplish it this year.
But there’s one thing your resolution is missing. I know, because I’ve noticed it on your social media. In fact, it’s been a noticeable absence on everyone’s posts that I’ve seen. That resolution is to make your relationship better in 2018.
Make your Relationship Better in 2018
There’s a popular saying that says when you die, you never wish that you spent more time at work or that you had more stuff. Instead, you wish you spent more time with your loved ones. So it’s sad that of all the resolutions you see on your social media there aren’t any that have to do with a better marriage. Don’t believe me, go look. Leave a comment below if I’m wrong.
Yes, when you die you’ll wish you spent more time with your spouse. But it’s the quality of that time that really makes your time with your spouse worth it or not. Yes, any time is better than no time at all. But if you’re going to be spending time with them you may as well be making it meaningful. Just like I’ve never heard someone on their deathbed say “I wish I worked more”, I’ve also never heard someone say “I wish I would have watched more TV with my spouse”.
So along with your resolutions of losing weight and getting that promotion, I’d like to offer a few resolutions to help make your relationship better in 2018, too.
Relationship Resolutions for 2018
1) Watch less TV with your spouse. I was recently interviewed by Adam Bulger, a writer at Fatherly.com. He asked me about streaming habits of couples. Specifically, he wanted to know about binge watching shows and how it affects relationships (full article in the link). In his article, he cites several professionals he talked to (like myself) and how they all agree that TV shows and specifically romance shows, setup unrealistic expectations for relationships. I mean how many people can take their partner on a date in a helicopter and land on a mansion with an exquisite dinner prepared? Not only does it setup unrealistic expectations for your relationship, but you could also be spending that time doing something more interactive with each other. “Like what?” you may ask: anything. This year, turn off the screens for just one day a week. Leave them off. You’ll be amazed what you and your partner find to fill your time.
2) More PDA. Even if you’re not into PDA, you need to do it. It doesn’t have to be the gross makeout kind of PDA, either. Simply holding hands with your spouse in public will do wonders. Saying I love you, or winking at your partner are also great ways to show PDA. There’s just something about seeing your partner show you love that makes you feel special. So this year commit to being that partner and don’t be afraid to show it.
3) Get over your inhibitions talking to your spouse about sex. Every relationship has taboo topics they can’t talk about: like your Mother-in-law’s cooking, or what really happened that night in college. And unfortunately for most couples, sex is also one of those taboo topics. Even though every couple has sex, for some reason they just don’t talk about it. You just can’t go up to your partner and say “I would love it if we could light some candles and spend some time making love tonight” or “Hey honey, I’m really in the mood for a blowjob”. Even if you’re are generally comfortable talking about sex, there are certain topics that you just can’t talk about, like certain fantasies or kinks you’ve wondered about. The truth is, you only have one partner. And life is too short for boring sex. This year, get over your inhibitions. Talk to your spouse openly about something you’ve always wanted to try in the bedroom. The point isn’t to actually do it, the point is to just bring it up. You might be surprised where the discussion goes.
About the Author
Aaron Anderson is the Director and Lead Therapist at The Marriage and Family Clinic in Denver, Colorado. He’s an avid father, husband and youth soccer coach. He doesn’t have time to write clever bios because he’s way too busy doing one of those things.