Are isolation and social distancing putting strain on your marriage?
Stuck inside and stuck in a rut?
Here’s how to deal with the new normal and keep your marriage happy and healthy while under quarantine.
During these weird times, some of us find ourselves having to spend every waking moment with the same person… and we have to find new ways to work, live, and get along with each other.
If your marriage or relationship is built on a weak foundation, this added stress and lack of space can cause some serious tensions to rise… and it can lead to arguments, conflict, and breakups.
Make Sure Your Marriage Survives The Pandemic
In China, where the outbreak first began, divorce rates have been rising. In fact, in some Chinese cities, a record number of divorce filings were recorded right after restrictions were lifted!
So what can you do to save your marriage or relationship during these crazy times? I’m here to share 12 tips that will ensure that you and your significant other will not only survive but thrive during this pandemic.
Tip 1 – Let your partner express themselves.
Right now, tensions are high and stress levels can be through the roof. Maybe he or she got laid off, is worried about money and rent, or is reading the news way too much. Right now, there are a ton of valid reasons to be feeling a little stressed out… after all, living this way isn’t natural.
So allow your partner to feel whatever they want to feel about this pandemic and don’t try and belittle their emotions. Instead, VALIDATE their feelings and make sure to let them know that you’re on their side and you’ll do whatever you can do to help push through this strange time together.
Take this time as an opportunity to build bridges and stop fighting with your spouse.
Tip 2 – Keep your anger and anxiety in check.
Like I said, there are definitely a lot of reasons to feel anxious right now, and that’s okay. But taking out all of your anger and frustration on your partner is a one way ticket to misery.
This anger and frustration can take many forms… but one thing you absolutely must do is avoid criticizing your partner, especially when it comes to money and work.
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Instead, try to funnel your negative energy into something else. Do a home workout or a passion project. When you’re feeling annoyed, do your best to avoid your partner and allow your feelings to pass.
If your partner is getting on your nerves, politely choose to put on your headphones and listen to a relaxing tune or podcast. Now’s not the time to try to win fights with your spouse. Remember, like it or not, you’re going to be seeing a lot of each other in the next little while so try to cut each other as much slack as you can. Whatever you do, just try and remain calm.
Tip 3 – Come up with a schedule.
For some people, time alone is a critical part of their mental health… and this is something that you or your partner might not understand.
In order to ensure that you or your partner gets some time alone, come up with a schedule where you have an allocated “reading time” right before bed or first thing in the morning. Guaranteeing this “alone time” can help the introverts out there refuel as much as possible.
Tip 4 – Come up with a routine and responsibilities.
Right now, you want to minimize the number of potential conflicts. Coming up with a routine and a list of responsibilities that you BOTH can agree on will help with this.
It can be something as simple as, say… On Tuesdays, you take out the garbage and vacuum. On Wednesday, your partner does the recycling and the dishes, and so on. Doing this is easy and can work wonders to add some orderliness in an otherwise crazy time.
Tip 5 – Avoid reading the news.
Right now, the news can be a huge source of anxiety and fear. It can be easy to get sucked into your phone or TV and just listen to the news, 24/7… after all, it seems like everyday, something insane is happening somewhere in the world.
So instead, limit your screen time. For example, I limit myself to reading news on my phone for only 20 minutes a day. That’s enough time to get caught up on the biggest news stories without adding unnecessary anxiety into my own life.
Tip 6 – Pickup separate hobbies.
This will help give you and your spouse extra room to breathe… and it can be a great time to explore some passions that you’ve always wanted to try.
So now is your time to explore! Ever wanted to learn how to paint? Do you have a great short story idea? Or maybe you’ve always wanted to write poetry! Now is a great time to look into these hobbies.
Tip 7 – Don’t ignore your body.
How well you take care of your body can have a dramatic impact on the way you feel, so try and do something active every single day. There are a ton of great home workout videos on YouTube and for many of them, you don’t need ANY workout equipment. So there’s no excuse at all.
Exercising has a huge impact on your mental health, so if you’ve been feeling mentally drained or antsy, try giving this a shot. You won’t regret it, and it just might save your marriage.
Tip 8 – When you DO argue, call a TIMEOUT!
Arguments and conflict are inevitably going to happen, despite your best efforts. This is okay and totally normal. What you CAN control is how heated these disputes get.
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My Dispute Defusing System has proven effective in handling arguments and conflict between couples… so if you argue a LOT with your
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One tip that I like to teach my clients is to call a 30 minute time out during a heated argument. You’ll be surprised how much calmer you’ll feel even after this very short amount of time. You’ll also have time to formulate your arguments so you don’t accidentally say something stupid. (We’ve all been there before!)
Tip 9 – Go outside or go for a drive!
Don’t be afraid to leave your partner hanging to get some fresh air or a drive. Chances are, they’ll need that time alone too.
One of my favourite excuses to get out of the house? A jog! Exercising outdoor kills multiple birds with one stone, so put on those jogging pants and get to it.
Tip 10 – Set up your workstations far apart from each other.
If you guys are both working from home, make sure that you give each other as much space as possible. For some living situations, this might be pretty tough, but having that alone time while you work can really alleviate some of the anxiety might creep in during this pandemic.
Tip 11 – Don’t forget about intimacy.
This one can be difficult… because, let’s face it, being around a person ALL the time can kill the passion and the romance. On top of that, at least 85% of people say stress just obliterates their libido… so there are multiple factors that are working against you here.
But this is an area that you simply can’t ignore. So make sure you allocate some time to having a stress free moment with your spouse everyday.
Maybe you can watch a funny show together, read some books together, or have a bath together… just do something where you both aren’t thinking about finances, work, and the crisis that we’re currently living through (I know, easier said than done, right?).
Tip 12 – Don’t be afraid to reach out and get help.
Marriage or couples therapy may be hard to find nowadays… but I have a GREAT solution for you.
Did you know that I offer 1-on-1 personal marriage coaching via email? If you’re struggling with your current relationship, then you can have me in your corner to help you through it.