Maintaining a healthy, happy relationship.

Yes, I know you are busy- we all are.  Among children, work, grocery shopping and social commitments we hardly find any “me” time, let alone spending quality time with your spouse.

You might ask: Why is it necessary?   Do I honestly need to go on a date with my spouse? After all, we spend our lives in each other’s company! But do you really spend time “together”?

Are you genuinely communicating and building intimacy in your relationship, or does your spouse have to compete with social media and screens for your attention?

Dating is important because it shows commitment to your relationship. So often the time and effort to nurture your relationship get neglected in our busy lives. Any relationship is work. It requires you to set goals, make an effort and work towards achieving your relationship goal.

We are all happy to work towards a career goal – think of all the extra effort and over time you will put in at the office to get that promotion. Or the hours spent at the gym to lose weight or get that perfect body. A happy relationship requires the same effort and commitment. You have to work at it to make it successful!

Open communication and being “connected” to your partner will allow you to sense when you and your partner are growing in different directions. You can then make the necessary adjustments before it is too late.

Of course, you also need to grow and be your own person – just because you are in a relationship doesn’t mean you have to do everything together and “become one”. It is very important that you grow as a person and spend time doing things that will help you to grow, but if you don’t invest in your relationship, it won’t be long before you feel that you and your partner have grown in different directions.

Spending time together is critical to any happy relationship. Many couples that want to stay together end up in marriage counselling because they have grown apart.  Often it is because they don’t spend time together.

Relationship experts say dating your spouse is not only important – it is critical for a happy marriage.

Not being able to find a babysitter is not an excuse. If you can’t go out, you can have a date at home. Set time aside for the two of you to just focus on each other – no television, no social media, no screens! Dating doesn’t have to be fancy, it doesn’t have to be expensive, and you don’t have to dress up.

You just need to make the effort to create time to be with each other. Yes, no girl will say no to the fancy meal, with romantic music and red roses, but it is not always necessary. It is more important that you show your spouse that you want to share special time with them and make the effort to make it happen.  Even if you can only manage this once a week, it will be great for your marriage.

It is so easy to take your partner and your relationship for granted. We assume it will always just “be there”. You assume wrong. You don’t just assume that your car will keep going forever, do you?

To make sure that your car gets you to your destination, and doesn’t break down on the side of the road, it needs regular maintenance. You don’t wait till it breaks down on the side of the road. The same applies to your marriage. It needs attention and nurturing on a regular basis. Don’t wait for it to break down before you nurture it.

So, if you don’t want to end up at the marriage counsellor or feeling like you are living like two strangers under the same roof, make an effort! Find your common interests, find an activity that you both enjoy – go for a run together, walk the dog together, garden together. When you started dating you did everything together. Find those common values and interests again – make time to be together. Invest in “couple time”. It is not that difficult!

The importance of dating your spouse

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