We all know the importance of self care – that idea of looking after ourselves and topping up our emotional, physical and spiritual resources, so that we can get the most out of our lives. Much of the time this is an individual pursuit – whether this is time alone, focusing on our hobbies or goals, or unwinding with a good book – but the reality is that relationships also need self care, in order to nurture and grow.
So what might this look like – and is relationship self care like regular self care? Kind of, but also no! Relationship self care involves things you do with your partner, so it might take a bit more thought and planning than if it were just your own thing. This extra effort is certainly worth it, however, since when we invest some time into nurturing the relationship, we often see valuable dividends.
With that in mind, here are some essentials if you’re intending to practice relationship self care:
Being able to practice reflective and nurturing activities like yoga and meditation together can be a powerful and deep way to both connect and calm down – together. Meditation and yoga are both activities that calm our central nervous systems, and work on our ‘fight or flight’ responses – so being present, together, in a calming and soothing space as you learn these self-soothing techniques is beneficial for you – as an individual, and in the relationship.
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Part of self care is topping up our emotional and physical resources – so putting your phones away and intentionally focussing on each other can be comforting and refreshing – a way to reconnect and appreciate each other’s company, without the usual distractions.
Talk about the Future
While discussing the future isn’t necessarily relaxing, it can be energizing and powerful for your relationship. To keep a relationship in good shape, it is important that you are both working towards similar goals, and have a shared vision of the future -so these conversations can be incredibly valuable and beneficial.
Connect with Nature
Sharing an experience together, such as a hike or a day at the beach, is a powerful way to reconnect with each other, and switch off from busy lives. Spending time in nature energizes in a way that nothing else can, and it also helps us to see things more clearly – and this can be a great opportunity to have long talks that might not be possible in busy everyday lives.
We hope these tips have been useful – remember, individual and relationship self care are all about investing in yourself and your partner – and this will look different for everyone. Consider what feels right for you, and the kind of experiences and activities help you to feel energized, connected and empowered – and make these a part of your routine. Engaging in these activities together will help you to move forwards together and have the relationship that you want.