The new year is knocking on the front door and you’re still busy cleaning up from Christmas; New Year’s resolutions have yet to cross your mind. It’s time to make like Santa and write a list of resolutions (be sure to check it twice). None of us are perfect, but somehow it can still seem so hard to come up with resolutions every year—especially if you’re not one of the more than 50% of people who put fitness as the #1 change or improvement they want to make.
While getting fit or losing weight are great resolutions to make, you can make lasting, life-changing improvements in your life without going to the gym or completely altering how you manage your time. 2018 is the year to focus on your relationship.
I’m not here to sugarcoat anything or make resolutions seem easy (after all, only 9.2% of people achieve their New Year’s resolutions), but if you keep it simple and remember that one day off course doesn’t ruin the whole year, you can make your relationship as great as Dax Shepard and Kristen Bell’s. Here are 5 resolutions to start now:
1) Learn to Communicate Effectively
As we’ve all heard at least 50 times in our lifetimes, communication is key in any relationship. Communication doesn’t just mean talking. It’s also listening to hear and understand (rather than just to respond) and sharing your feelings without pointing blame. When listening and sharing, it’s important to remember your tone and body language as well. Remember when you were a teen and your mom or dad would tell you to “watch your tone”? That advice is still wise, no matter what stage your relationship is in! Be sure to check back in January for a blog titled 3 Ways to Communicate Effectively by guest writer Jarod Allen, a licensed relationship counselor.
2) Be Grateful
It’s easy to get used to each other and forget to appreciate the nice things you do that made you two fall in love in the first place. This year, put saying “thank you” for all the little things at the top of your to-do list. Remember their beauty, remember that they take out the trash so you don’t have to go out into the cold weather, and remember how much you truly love them.
3) Keep Dating
Whether you’re married, engaged or dating, after a while, staying home and watching Netflix in silence can become a habit. Don’t get stuck in that rut! Creating new experiences together and continuing to learn about each other through conversations that don’t revolve around work or bills is key in keeping the spark alive. Make your relationship a priority by subscribing to Datebox. Use the code HONEYANDBOO for $10 off your first month.
4) Play With Each Other
This can be taken as innocently or as risqué as you like. While sex is an incredibly important part of relationships, it’s also important to be friends with each other by laughing together and creating new experiences. Wake them up with kisses all over their face in the morning or have a dance party in your living room after a hard day at work. If you treat your sweetie like you’re trying to win their love and affection every day, it will be easy to remember why you fell in love in the first place.
5) Set Goals Together
While you may both have the goal of buying a house or having kids, setting other goals like saving an extra $200/month to go toward your next vacation or renovation your kitchen can help you grow closer to each other! Working toward a common goal helps foster a team environment, which is exactly what a couple should be.
What are your relationship resolutions for 2018? Share your ideas and tips for other couples in the comments!