We live in the age of compulsive busyness.
We run from meeting to meeting, deadline to deadline, school gates to home and back — leaving little time for much else.
At the end of the day, we're exhausted. And though we never mean to put our relationships on the backburner, that's what always seems to happen.
But leaving your relationship for last is a huge mistake. A lack of quality time with our partner can have a major impact on our happiness and health. On the flipside, carving out just a little quality time can work wonders. In fact, a study published in the Journal of Marriage and Family found that individuals felt happier and less stressed when they spent time with their partner.
If you want to have a successful, loving and long-lasting relationship — it’s vital you make time to nurture it.
Here are some simple ways to keep your relationship happy and healthy, even on your busiest days.
Invest in Affection
Showing affection is one the most powerful acts of everyday love.
At its core, affection is an acknowledgment of someone else's presence — which shouldn't seem like a big deal, but in today's world of online everything, it really matters.
Everyday acts of affection such as, a touch of the hand, a kiss or a stroke on the back as you pass each other in the house, can be a small but powerful way to let your partner know that you see and value them. These tiny gestures can compound to bring big benefits to your health and your relationship over time.
In fact, a study at the University of North Carolina found that women who reported being in a relationship with a partner who gave them lots of hugs had higher oxytocin levels, lower blood pressure and lower heart rates.
Connect Outside of Your Usual Time and Place
What if you and your partner spend most of your days in different places?
For starters, this shouldn’t mean out of sight, out of mind. Quite the opposite. Independence (and even a little distance) is great for a relationship. But you still need to nurture that connection.
Text, call or email your partner once or twice a day just to say 'I love you', 'How is your day going?', or even just, 'Hey'. A quick check-in outside your usual 5 to 9 pm routine is a great way to let them know you're thinking of them. A few minutes in between meetings or at lunch is all you need.
Talk about Something that Matters
Communication is essential to all our relationships, but especially our romantic ones.
Happy couples talk to each other. And we mean, really talk. This means making time on a regular basis to discuss something personal and meaningful, not just who's picking the kids up from school or doing the chores that week.
Don't get us wrong. Great communication doesn't have to involve hours of shared soul-searching. But it does mean taking a few minutes at the end of the day to share whatever's on your mind with your partner, rather than taking it to bed with you.
And who knows? You might be surprised at the helpful insights and creative advice your partner can offer when you give them a chance to talk about something other than who's on dish duty.
If you’re waiting until the kids go off to college to start having sex again, your relationship is in trouble.
Psychologist Samantha Rodman advises her clients to schedule sex into their busy agendas. 'So it’s not a one way street, also schedule some stuff you’re really excited about too. Like, conversations or nights with friends, or time to work out, or time to scrapbook or whatever gets you going. If you’re happier, you will feel more sexual.'
Sex has many hidden benefits that can help in times of intense stress or pressure. In fact, many therapists agree that sex begets sex. The more you allow yourself to stop rushing around and start enjoying sex, the more sex you’ll naturally want to have.
Think of it as an Investment
We love the following quote from Howard Markman, co-director of Marital and Family Studies at Denver University. Howard says:
'The more you invest in fun and friendship and being there for your partner, the happier the relationship will get over time.'
Investing in real intimacy isn't just about making time — it’s changing how you think about that time. Let go of the perception that quality time together requires a huge time sacrifice. Instead, think of every minute you spend on your relationship as an investment that will make it grow bigger, better and stronger for years to come.
If you’re having difficulty connecting with your partner physically, there are options that can help. vFit and vFit PLUS are the first and only home-use vaginal rejuvenation devices using red light to help improve feminine wellness, intimacy, sensation and confidence. If you’re holding back from connecting with your partner and living your fullest life, know that you don’t have to settle.