Deepen your relationship this February and beyond
February is the month of love, and many of us start focusing on our romantic relationships and how satisfied we are at this time.
So how we can have deeper more meaningful connections? Whether you are newly in a relationship, have been with your partner or married for some time, or even if you have yet to find that special person, speaking with a coach can be an enlightening process as you delve deeper into what you want from your relationship and what it's currently providing. It is likely there is a gap, and that’s normal.
8 Questions to ask your partner
Here are some suggestions on areas to focus on, think about and, if you want to really deepen your relationship, to regularly ask yourself and your partner.
Is there anything I can do for you at this time to make you feel more loved?
Sometimes having a deep and meaningful conversation isn’t that comfortable, so perhaps you need to find a quiet space, sit in silence for a while, or make sure there are no distractions like technology around.
How can I better support you in your life?
Now here’s a question! Perhaps this might prompt an avalanche or maybe it could be quite a difficult question to answer... whichever way, listen with an open mind and really try and hear what the other person is saying. It could be as simple as giving them a good morning kiss before getting ready for work, or giving them some space when they first return home from a long day.
Is there anything that I have done recently that has unknowingly hurt you?
Now brace yourself! This is where the conversation could get emotional or uncomfortable. It may be that an issue you thought was insignificant or resolved has still been lingering for them. Truly listen and try not to interrupt before they have finished what they have to say. Recognise that it probably wasn’t easy for them to bring it up, apologise, and find a way to move on. It’s easy to ignore the difficult moments, yet asking the question and resolving whatever comes out of it will take strength and courage and ultimately lead to a better strong relationship.
When you come home from a day at work, what could I do or say that makes you feel most loved?
Such a simple question, yet it's able to make such a difference. Everyone is different, and what you want may quite likely not be the approach that your partner would prefer.
Is there any kind of physical touch that I could engage in that would make you feel more loved?
We’re not talking the sexual kind here – just the physical intimacy that comes with more touch. So, it could be that they would enjoy holding hands more or getting cosy on the sofa of an evening. Or perhaps they’d appreciate a hug more regularly.
Would you prefer more closeness or more alone time in the coming week?
Our emotional needs vary from time to time depending on what is going on, and it doesn’t mean that we are loved more or less, just that different events mean we’d appreciate a different approach. Asking this question and taking on board the reply will enable you to know how you can best support them.
How do you feel about our level of intimacy lately?
This area is often a source of resentment if your partner isn’t of the same level of sexual drive as you, and all too often it’s also an area that rarely gets talked about. This will take some patience and understanding, however knowing how your partner feels about your sex life and if they want more or less of a certain thing will only enhance your relationship.
When you find sharing difficult, how can I best support you in those moments?
Some people find sharing their innermost thoughts and feeling difficult, while for others it comes more naturally. It may be that your partner may shut down when you bring up a particularly difficult subject or one that they are not ready to talk about. Knowing this will help you to communicate with them in a more supportive way until they feel they can be more open. Perhaps you might adopt a sign between you both that one of your needs time out, or maybe it might be a word that has a special meaning. However, if you manage this there’s always a way to make your partner feel more loved and cared for.
Asking some or all of these questions of yourself and then of your partner can ensure you focus on how you really feel, and perhaps there are some simple, quick changes that you could both make that would make such a world of difference to the other person.
Knowing what importance your partner places on things also helps massively, and what might be insignificant to you may mean the world to them. If you are not yet in tune with your partner’s love language then this would be a great place to start. Gary Chapman wrote an amazing book on this very subject and narrowed it down to five main love languages. These are:
- Words of affirmation: this language is all about the power of words to affirm other people.
- Acts of service: for these people, actions definitely speak louder than words.
- Receiving gifts: for some, what makes them feel most loved is receiving a gift, however small.
- Quality time: this language is all about giving the other person your undivided attention.
- Physical touch: to this person, nothing speaks more deeply than appropriate touch.
As with most things, you will probably identify with all areas, however one or two will resonate with you most and be more important to you. Once you know your love language and that of your partner, you’ll be able to make such a difference to your relationship by remembering and acting on what is important to them.
Should you wish to go even deeper, a coaching session with a relationship coach could deepen and enrich your relationship even more, or perhaps you are really struggling and not seeing things from each other’s point of view. Either way, you’ll come away from the session with some tools to assist you going forward to form a really strong and lasting relationship.
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