WRITTEN BY Felicia Kashevaroff
Feel Like There’s Never Enough Time Together? 5 Tips for Couples to Reclaim Their Moments
Modern life has a way of consuming every bit of our time: jobs, kids, financial strain, digital distractions, and the neverending chores of adulthood; they all seem to conspire to keep us from spending time with our partners.
But the research is clear: couples need to invest time in their relationship to keep their connection strong over time. So what should you do if you feel like there’s never enough time together?
👉 Here are five tips to help couples to reclaim their moments:
Remember what brought you together
Something made you and your partner pick each other. Maybe it was a shared interest in anime, maybe you met on your college intramural volleyball team, or maybe you met at a music festival.
Are those early shared interests still a part of your life? If yes, terrific! Are you still sharing them with your partner? If not, why not? Life is full of so many tasks and distractions. It’s good for our psyche, and it’s good for our relationship to incorporate fun into our daily lives.
You may no longer have the time or money to devote hours to our old pastimes, but we can still enjoy our interests and our partners. Pick a nostalgic series you used to watch together and plan a weekend binge-watch while cuddled up under a blanket with your favorite nostalgic snacks. Or take a volleyball to the nearest beach or park and hit it together for a couple of hours. Pack a picnic and your favorite beverage. Or find a local cover band that brings up memories of the music you listened to when you met. You get the idea.
Think about what you miss the most
In the early days of your relationship, you couldn’t get enough of each other. you were always looking for a new adventure to share. But once you build a life and a family together, those curated moments of connection tend to take a backseat.
Sit down with your sweetie for a few minutes and grab notebooks. Think for a moment about what kind of activity you most miss sharing with your partner. Is it long, deep conversations? Is it travel or shared adventures? Is it discovering a new hobby? Is it sexual intimacy? Write down what kind of activity you miss the most.
Now, swap notes with your partner. Under their request, write down what you think needs to happen to bring more of that into your life. Be open and constructive in your comments. Don’t judge your partner for wanting something different. Be clear about what you need to make their wish come true, and work together to find a way to make sure both of you are getting more of what you miss the most from the early days of your relationship.
Do chores together
I know what you’re thinking. Felicia, chores are not fun and quality time together. Right? Not necessarily! It turns out that doing daily chores together rather than separately can make couples happier. I hate going grocery shopping, but when my partner and I go to Costco together, we get to talk about what we’re going to cook, what our week looks like, and we can remind each other about our likes and dislikes. Plus, there are free samples! I never thought grocery shopping could be fun, but it actually is.
You could also fold laundry together while watching a show or walk the dog together and decompress about your day. Doing chores isn’t the sexiest way to spend time together, but when your schedule is maxed out, it’s an excellent way to sneak in some together time and remind each other that you’re on the same team, working toward the same goals.
Establish a daily ritual
Creating daily rituals is a great way to maintain connection with your partner when you’re both too busy to see straight.
It can be hard to introduce something new when you’re already busy, but I love the concept of habit stacking in Atomic Habits by James Clear. Take something you already do, like brushing your teeth, and stack the new habit you want to create on top of it. Perhaps after brushing your teeth before bed each night, you give each other a fresh, minty kiss. Bonus for kisses over 10 seconds, which enhance connection and set the tone for what might happen once you crawl into bed together. But remember, the kiss doesn’t have to lead to sex. It can simply be a ritual that resets the disconnect from a busy day to remind us that we love each other.
Leaving and arriving rituals are also a great way to add moments of connection during your day. Maybe you already do this by saying “I love you” when you get off the phone, but try taking it a step further. Try saying I love you whenever you leave the room you and your partner are in together, or hug whenever you part for the day. Hug again when you return, rather than jumping straight into the evening’s tasks.
Put it on the calendar
If you’re anything like me, you live and breathe by your calendar. I put EVERYTHING on there, from meetings to doctor appointments to lunch dates with a friend. But you know what often doesn’t make it on there? Date night with my partner. Carve out time from your busy, busy lives for your relationship, just like you do for everyone else. It may not seem sexy, but it will make sure that time together is a priority.
Do you know what else could be fun? Send your partner a calendar invite for spicy time. Use a playful metaphor as the event title, or use an emoji like 😏 or 😈 or 💦. Be creative in a way that works for you. This offers the chance to build anticipation with your partner and makes you both look forward to sharing more intimacy and passion with one another.
Life has a way of getting in the way of our love story. It takes effort to write a new script that prioritizes each other. These five tips can help you and your partner reclaim the moments you once shared and bring more love, playfulness, and connection into your lives. Need more guidance to map out time for each other? Book a 20-minute discovery call with a coach!