Guest article from Joann Riggio, MFT
I am a Marriage and Family Therapist with a private practice in San Mateo, specializing in Couples Therapy. A common challenge I see couples experiencing is feeling disconnected from their partner. Couples are trying to manage work, finances, family, and relationships. These demands can be exhausting and it may feel like it’s impossible to stay connected.
With helpful hints about building and maintaining healthy habits, you can have a closer bond. You may feel like you don’t have time to focus on your relationship and that you need to pay attention to more immediate priorities. However, if you put your energy into your relationship you can reap the rewards of a happier family life.
You can create healthy habits by making time for your relationship. Remind yourself of the importance of time for each other and allowing yourself and your partner to make your relationship the priority. We all have routines for succeeding and focusing on work, finances, children’s success, etc. As well, we need to nurture and focus the same energy on our partner.
When we lose our focus, we also lose the momentum that initially came naturally. Remind yourself of the things you did with and for each other during your initial bonding. Once that focus is misplaced by life’s distractions, that closeness is lost. As a marriage and family therapist, I help couples take back what was lost. Here are some simple tips to put into practice to get your relationship back on track and reconnecting with your partner:
- Greet one another when you wake up in the morning and when you leave and return from being out of the house. I know life is hectic and when your partner walks in you may be feeding the children or in the middle of preparing dinner. It only takes a moment to make contact with your partner.
- Keep one another informed of your meeting and project deadlines, work stresses, or by updating each other about your day with the kids, for example. It could take as little as 15 minutes of your time each evening.
- Incorporate weekly date night even if it is for an hour or so just to be together alone for a walk or dinner. Be sure to keep the conversation away from family and house business. Choose a topic and talk about it or simply share some things you’ve learned about and share them with your partner.
- Establish a gratitude ritual such as “Hey, thanks for taking out the trash or doing the dishes or for picking the kids up from school, etc.”
- After the kids go to bed, put away the electronics and be sure and spend some time connecting with your spouse. Watch your favorite show, chat, play a board game, or simply sit and relax with one another. Just make sure you stay connected.
© 2016 Joann G. Riggio, MFT is a Psychotherapist specializing in Couples Counseling and Therapy for individuals undergoing work stress, depression, anxiety, trauma and other challenges. She helps couples get out of their negative cycles so they can once again experience the loving closeness.
Joann G. Riggio, MFT
1720-S. Amphlett Blvd.
San Mateo, CA 94402
Tel. # 650-207-1864
Joann’s article is posted on Cynthia Klein’s, Certified Parenting Educator, website bridges2understa.wpstagecoach.com. Thank you for the fantastic information, Joann.