It's the small things that count.
So many busy couples wind up in distress and disconnected from each other because everything else is a priority but their relationship.
I often wind up seeing couples who have lost each other in the chaos of life. Work, kids, school, even friends — people are weighed down by so many outside factors and "obligations," and get into trouble when they neglect the importance of their relationships.
When people first fall in love, they spend time with each other and enjoy it. Other things fall to the wayside; you might stay up all night with each other, call out sick from work, and it's like the other person becomes your entire universe.
Eventually, we all know that even the hottest of relationships becomes old hat. Reality returns, calling out sick from work is reserved mostly for when you actually are sick, and if you're up late it's because you're out with friends, have a cranky baby or you're doing work.
Couples wind up living together, going about their lives, and their relationships take a back seat to everything else they have going on.
But here's the thing: If you don't prioritize your relationship in addition to everything else you have going on, you're putting it at risk. But as a busy professional working full-time or more, how are you supposed to keep your connection alive with your partner?
Here are five simple rituals you can add to your life without having to set aside hours to stay connected during the busiest times in your life. Put one or all of these rituals on autopilot for those busy times in your life, instead of neglecting each other until you get a chance to breathe again.
1. Make sex a priority.
OK, this is obvious, but people forget to have sex. You get home late from work, you're tired, whatever. Don't let your sex life slip away because of anything else. If you're both unsatisfied, one of you will be, even if you don't want to admit it. Don't be one of those couples who don't have sex for months at a time.
When sex isn't a problem for a couple, it constitutes 5 percent of their relationship. When it is a problem, it becomes 95 percent of their relationship. Keep it within that 5 percent. It’s good for you and it's good for your relationship.
2. Enjoy a hot beverage with each other.
Coffee, cocoa, tea — pick your poison. But do this every day, even if it's just five minutes in the morning. Make it a daily habit and it will give you a chance to connect, even if briefly.
3. Find time to make a daily phone call.
You have to eat and go to the bathroom, you can also find the time to reach out to your partner. You're both probably pretty busy so schedule it if you have to. Use a calendar system on your phone and stay consistent. Just checking in with each other can bridge some distance.
4. Leave a romantic note.
If you have varying schedules and can't spend any amount of time with each other in the morning, leave each other notes. It takes a few minutes to jot down something and leave it for your partner. Who doesn't like getting handwritten love notes?
5. Shower together.
You can save time and enjoy each other's company, even if it's all business. Think of all the water you'll save. Go green and enjoy a daily shower with your love.
Obviously these rituals won't be the glue that binds the two of you, but they're better to employ than doing nothing and losing sight of each other.
This article was originally published at My Best Relationship. Reprinted with permission from the author.