This guest article from Psych Central was written by Kate Thieda, MS, LPCA, NCC
Sometimes the simplest ideas are the most brilliant.
A client of mine was telling me about interactions she sometimes has with her partner that are less than ideal. Because she struggles with anxiety that can get blown out of proportion and results in her snapping at everyone and everything, there are often several incidents during a typical week that can cause tension or hurt feelings between her and her partner.
As we all know, trying to diffuse an ugly situation in the moment, or shortly thereafter, when hurt feelings are still simmering, can often be challenging.
Their solution: Time on Sundays dedicated to “Questions/Comments/Concerns.”
The way my client described it, what she and her partner decided to do was to dedicate a specific time every Sunday to discuss their relationship. Both of them have had tumultuous romantic relationships in the past, and they wanted to have preventative strategies to avoid problems this time around. Thus, “Questions/Comments/Concerns” time was created.
During this dedicated time each week, these women focus on each other only–no distractions, no excuses. They believe that by addressing problems in their relationship during a time when have agreed upon–as in, when no one is at the peak of emotion about it–they can more effectively tackle the problems and work together to create solutions.
This time and space for each other is not just to voice complaints and concerns, though. It is also a time to speak of the things they appreciate about each other. If you think about it, your partner likely does a lot of little things on a regular basis that get overshadowed by the not-so-great stuff. How much would your relationship improve if you knew that each week, you and your partner would slow down long enough to say thank you?
Consider making time each week to sit down and talk with your partner about the good, the bad, and the ugly of the past week. You may find, like my client has, that it changes your relationship for the better.