Aleteia

How to make the most of your weekend as a couple

HAPPY COUPLE
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Enhance your relationship by making sure you make plans together beforehand.

After a long week of hardly seeing each other, many couples count on the weekend to catch up. But reality often falls very short of expectations. Spouses may expect too much and the atmosphere can turn sour for all sorts of reasons — a bad mood, bickering, wanting your own way. You may have had a good week and then, wham! To avoid disappointment, every couple should prepare for their weekend.

Forget about work and relax

First of all, it’s important to talk about what each of you are expecting, as a couple (or even as a family, if you have children) and not just as an individual. The goal is to enjoy some good time together. Then, think about how you can spend this time without the constraints of your daily work. You need to do this when you’re relaxed (as much as possible) so, for example, put away your computer and paperwork.

Why not organize all the photos you’ve never had time to sort through? It will bring back happy, joyful, romantic, funny memories. Or why not introduce your partner to one of your interests? Or go for a walk together, visit an exhibit, or organize a meal with friends? In short, it can be anything you like — use your imagination.

The spiritual life of each spouse is an area that benefits the relationship, too. Confidences shared with respect will develop an intimacy that warms the heart. But the advice is still the same: from making plans to carrying them out, spouses must learn to listen to one another, without judging or criticizing, asking only questions necessary for a better understanding of what is shared.

Relax, yes, but don’t improvise

Does everything need to be planned? Isn’t the weekend also about no schedules and constraints, about disconnecting from everyday worries? That’s a frequent remark that sums up the desire to just relax after a busy week.

It’s true that it’s important to know how to slow down, to switch off, and enjoy yourself without the usual constraints. But as with music, improvising requires training in order to achieve harmony. It’s easy to improvise when you’re on your own, but when it’s about finding a happy medium as a couple, it’s better to first make sure you both appreciate the other’s wishes, which often go unexpressed.

Marie-Noël Florant