We all know being intentional is the wise thing to do but how can you make it applicable in your marriage?
If you dare, we have three simple challenges for you this week.
Being present for each other and asserting the importance of the relationship during these transitional moments is part of how couples establish what Dr. Gottman refers to as “attunement” — i.e., a deep level of understanding that couples both possess and lovingly express to each other. In his book, What Makes Love Last?, Dr. Gottman asserts that this level of attunement with each other is a way for couples to inoculate themselves against falling down the slippery slope of negative thinking about their relationship that can ultimately lead to betrayal. “One of the other important things we discovered about betrayal was not only about turning away from one another, but it’s also about this negative comparison where one partner is saying in [his/her] mind, ‘Who needs this crap? I can do better,’” Dr. Gottman explains. “And that negative comparison gets people to start detaching from the relationship.” – Theo Pauline Nestor
So what can you do to “attune” to your spouse?
Dr. Gottman recommends:
- Greeting each other with Hello
- This may seem obvious but when you come in the house, do you look for your spouse?
- Is it a passing hello as you dive into a project?
- Tell your spouse you’re happy to see them.
- After saying hello, show interest in their day, ask questions. Phones away.
- Share a 6 second kiss
- What? You say this might be awkward? Even better. Do it!
- “Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth – for your love is more delightful than wine.” – Song of Songs 1:2
- Say Goodbye
- Let them know they will be missed, once you leave or they leave.
- We never know what waits for us once we leave the house, make your goodbyes count.
You’re modeling for your kids how to say hello and goodbye. And the kiss? Well, the kids might be grossed out but it’s the best gift for their sweet little souls.
If you need some help with how to start off your conversation, here’s a phone call between me and Will Ferrell.
Well that went south quickly!! Just a little fun blending of clips during my video editing days.
We’d love to hear how the challenge goes for you. Did you try? If not, why? Comment below!
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Susie Pease says
Love the Will Ferrell clip! 🙂
Thanks for the challenge too!
danielle west says
Haha, I was in quite the mood that day!! You’re welcome. Let us know if the challenge shifts your relationship in a different direction.