Living and working together means a lot of time together. One thing I’ve figured out, is that the smallest gestures can really mean the difference between a regular day and a great day together. Here’s 5 little things that make a big difference in marriage that you might be forgetting to do that make a huge difference in how you feel about each other at the end of the day.
1. Taking out the trash and helping with the kitchen chores
Every girlfriend I have always exhibits a roaring enthusiasm for their husbands when they help with the daily chores of running the kitchen. It’s a small gesture that says I appreciate your cooking, cleaning, whatever. Plus no one ever wants to feel they are carrying any burden alone.
2. Holding space
After you’ve been together for a while, you’ll get know the rhythm of your partner like your favorite songs. There’s always a chorus, or a habit that they show. One of those habits will be how they vent/ complain. The habit of how they get obsessed and can’t shut up about a certain topic. Holding space—simply being there to listen and absorb those conversations (be it one-sided) shows an incredible amount of support. Just be sure that when it’s your turn, your partner can hold space for you too.
3. Serving each other
This is can be taken many ways, but the thought alone is very powerful. This is something I’ve taken from the running of my business to my relationship. Instead of saying “what do I need to do today?” I ask “How can I serve today?” So with my partner, I’m practicing the mode of service, not selfish. This is something as simple as setting the table, getting each other water, offering without having to be told. The feeling of being served makes you want to serve back, and it’s a great cycle that feeds itself, so there’s no need to be selfish.
4. Working in the same room
We’re pretty guilty of not doing this for the most part of our relationship. And I honestly think, it only served to separate us. And rightfully so, there are things that you need to have in place in order to: write, edit or read things that need your full attention. And it seems like it’s always too hard to communicate to your partner that it’s “quiet time” right now. But instead of writing off the possibility of working in the same room together, try it in different stages of your work cycle. There are undoubtedly times when you’re working that you need absolute silence or at least no interruptions. Like answering emails, writing copy, whatever. However there are always tasks that don’t require too much focus. For me it’s editing pictures, designing something, cleaning up my desktop, etc. Since we spend a lot of our working hours at home, it’s incredibly more enjoyable to know that your partner is right there next to you as you get stuff done. Plus, you tend to not screw off (go on Facebook) when there’s someone else in the room besides you.
5. Rock Climbing
Okay, this snuck it’s way in here. Rock climbing for me wasn’t a small thing, but for others it may just be another sport under their belt, so what the heck throw it in. Rock climbing is a unique thing in that it holds space as an individual sport and a partner sport. You’ve got the scenario of just you and the wall in front of you. And then it’s you and the wall and your partner: spotting you, belaying you, or bracing your fall etc. My partner and I have taken to rock climbing recently and we find that it’s subtly building our team and communication skills on another level. I can see the areas we still need work on, like communicating under pressure (or when you can’t seem to get that tricky foot piece) and it’s a great place to de-stress after a long day of working together. In a surprising way, rock climbing was just going to be another sport to do, but it’s actually become a crazy self-reflection that’s fun, challenging and a great workout.
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