Valentines Day: Ideas to Improve Your Relationship

Valentines Day: Ideas to Improve Your Relationship

Valentines-Day-Photo-Wallpapers“Valentine’s Day.” That’s the name of a new movie from director Gary Marshall about intertwining couples and singles in Los Angeles, break-ups and make-ups based on the pressures and expectations of the holiday, the high holy day of lovers. If it’s not all wine and roses and candy and violins where you live, check out this story by clinical psychologist Dr. Shannon Kolakowski  published in Huff Post Healthy Living for Valentine’s Day ideas to improve your relationship.

“Valentine’s Day is almost upon us, and you’re not alone if you sometimes feel unsure of the best way to celebrate with your loved one. So this year I thought I’d share some ways to spend the big day that will not only be fun for you both, but that will also actually help improve your relationship. Win-win, right?

Add novelty to your routine.
One of the nicest parts of being in a relationship is having routines that you share together and love: Saturday mornings spent leisurely snuggled up together; going to your favorite neighborhood sushi restaurant; or watching your favorite TV shows together. But becoming too comfortable in your routines can put your relationship at risk of falling into complacency and even boredom, which isn’t so great for your relationship. So for this Valentine’s Day, do something new and adventurous together. Research has found that couples who experience new and exiting activities together have an increase in the quality of their relationship (Aron et al, 2000). Trying new things together brings back the feelings of excitement and the thrill that you felt when you first fell in love.

Use Valentine’s Day as a marker for starting to incorporate novel experiences into your schedule. Each of you can brainstorm a list of new places you’d like to see or things you’d like to try together. Make a goal to try one new activity each month or weekend, depending on what your schedule allows. Keep your list someplace you can see it, like a whiteboard, and check off the activities as you go. Watch your relationship thrive.

Incorporate appreciation and gratitude.
One hallmark of committed, solid couples is an ability to show gratitude to one another (Gordon et al., 2012). When your partner feels appreciated, he or she will in turn be more likely to appreciate you and all you do for them. On Valentine’s Day, incorporate gratitude with a gift that shows your high level of appreciation. Say it in your card, in your gift (love vouchers are a classic), or write down how you feel in a poem or love letter. Don’t let Valentine’s Day be the only day you show your appreciation, though. Make it your goal to show gratitude for your partner on a regular basis, as even small gestures of gratitude can make a big difference in long term relationship success (Algoe, Gable, and Maisel, 2010).

Heat up things in the bedroom…”

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