We talk a lot about the hard work it takes to make a relationship great. It is vital to put in the effort to communicate well with your partner and love them in a way that is specific to them, like using one of their 5 Love Languages. But a great relationship isn’t all about doing the emotional (and sometimes physical) labour we’ve just referred to — it’s also about resting together. That means turning off phones and minds, blocking out the everyday stresses of life and thoroughly enjoying something that refreshes you both.
I’m not only talking about sleeping next to each other, although that does have some surprising health benefits, like an improved immune system and reduced blood pressure. I’m talking about vacation or staycation. You don’t have to go to a tropical beach to rest together, but it might help…
Can you remember the last time you and your partner had a moment of repose?
Taking a holiday is different in every culture. For my wife and I we found that my American ways were the opposite of her European ways. A long weekend here and there was enough vacation for me, whereas my wife needed at least 2 consecutive weeks off in order to feel fully rejuvenated. Long story short, I have come around to my wife’s European sensibilities, and some time in the summer we get out of our normal context and focus hard on takin’ it easy. I do, however, still feel like a long weekend away can be just as restful.
Going on a holiday with your partner is also a great way to try new things together and reignite a potentially dim spark. Traveling is an experience in which you can see the best in each other as well as the worst. Often times travel gets delayed, hunger sets in, confusion and frustration take the reins of someone’s emotions, and feeling vulnerable in an unfamiliar place forces you to rely on each other to make it through. That might sound a bit dire, but I assure you these shared experiences are invaluable in growing closer as a couple.
This summer we encourage you and your partner to do whatever it is that works for you. It’s been proven that vacationing can improve our physical and mental health, as well as overall life satisfaction. It’s also been linked to improved productivity once you return to normal life and work. It doesn’t matter if it’s a long-haul flight to another country or a train to the coast, make it a priority to go and rest with your loved one this year.