How many of us put in hours working at our jobs, pursuing our favorite hobbies, browsing the internet, and taking care of our kids? But how much time do we spend nourishing our relationships? Stop and think about it for a moment.
Often, the answer is little to no time at all. And don’t worry if you’re nodding your head, because so many of us are guilty of doing the same.
Why do we think a relationship is different, and doesn’t need to be worked at?
Without proper love and care, conflicts, frustrations, and even boredom can arise and cause a rift in a relationship, and end up compromising it for good.
A great way to prevent this from happening is to follow a set of couple goals or guidelines you both commit to, which aim to strengthen your partnership and help you grow closer together instead of apart.
What is a couple goal?
Just like you have goals for your career, your health, or finances, you can have goals in your relationship based on what you both want, and how you can make this happen.
If you don’t make a conscious effort to think about what you want your future together to look like, and how you can evolve both individually and as a couple, you might end up drifting from each other.
Here are 7 couple goals that are vital for a happy relationship.
Connect to each other every day.
If you’re both holding down jobs, looking after kids, and you’ve taken on other responsibilities on top of that, it’s important that you schedule time to connect with each other. This means no interruptions, no outside distractions, and giving each other your full attention. The morning is a great time for this because you’re less likely to be pulled away by anything else.
Talk, share, laugh, embrace, and just be present in each other’s company. Look into each other’s eyes, hold hands, and be attentive. You can even do this in bed before you both get up and start your day.
Communicate with kindness.
Communication is vital in any relationship, but how you’re communicating is what matters most. Most couples are often cruel, spiteful, or hurtful in the way they speak to each other, especially when they’re in the middle of an argument or conflict.
The thing about that is, it doesn’t matter how many times you apologize — you cannot take back those words, and over time they build up. They can eventually become a huge wound in the relationship, due to lack of trust, respect, and love for each other.
A great way to prevent this is to promise that you’ll only speak to each other with love, no matter what’s going on. Pick a place to sit in your house as you share how you’re feeling when you’re upset, angry, or frustrated; pick a small object to hold when each person is talking, and promise to listen without jumping in or trying to defend yourself.
Be vulnerable with each other.
Everyone has their own hang-ups, insecurities, fears, and emotional baggage they’re carrying with them. We all have feelings of shame and guilt, and vulnerable parts of ourselves that we try to hide from others so that we appear strong.
But when you allow yourself to be open and honest with your partner, and share your vulnerabilities, you confirm to yourself that this relationship is a safe and secure space where you can fully be yourself without fear of being judged.
When you’re both vulnerable with each other, your bond will strengthen, and you’ll experience a deeper love and intimacy than ever before.
Make time for fun!
When we’re kids, playing comes naturally to us. But somewhere along the way to adulthood, we forgot what it means to have fun.
Try to think back to the last time you and your partner let go and allowed yourself to have some real, carefree fun. Can you remember a time like that? If not, you’re not playing enough!
It requires effort to make sure you still have fun together, but planning it into your schedule and giving yourself permission to have fun will create amazing experiences for you.
Your relationship isn’t supposed to be serious all the time. It’s also an outlet for you to enjoy your life to the fullest—so make sure you’re doing that.
You prioritize your relationship.
Having a life outside of your relationship is important, but your relationship should still be a priority for you both.
It’s easy to take each other for granted the more time you spend together, and the more responsibilities you take on together, the harder it becomes to spend quality time together. But this is vital. Weekly date nights are a great way to start things off.
You continually challenge each other.
Your relationship is something that should always be pushing you forward in your life, and this stems from challenging each other to pursue your dreams and goals and be better people each day.
Doing those things together instead of separately, will create a supportive, encouraging environment for the both of you. Be your partner’s biggest cheerleader, and they can be yours.
You’re a team.
There’s no me or them, there’s only we and us. In a healthy, loving relationship, you should see your partner as exactly that—your partner or teammate. You’re stronger together than you are alone, so you make sure you stand together and support one another in times of need. Sometimes, one person will have to give a little more than the other, and this will be reciprocated.
You both have each other’s back, and you know you can count on each other no matter what life throws your way.