Whether you are starting a new relationship, transitioning within the stages of, or nourishing a long term partnership, giving gifts to your union is critical. In the same manner that we give tokens of affection to our significant other to let them know how special they are and how much they mean to us, giving a gift to our relationship can be energizing, invigorating, and nourishing. In fact, these gifts just may be the happiness medicine your relationship needs.
- Gift of a good friendship with someone else. Expecting one person or one union to supply every need and every desire conjures the high-C whine of a Shop-Vac’s suction. That’s enough to suck the life out of any promising pair. Alternately, when we have another go-to-guy/gal, to vent, to complain, to listen, or simply to connect with, the weight of our complex humanity is better distributed.
- Gift of community service. Taking on a project that gives something back further supports the system of balance that is critical in our lives and our relationships. Many times when we are able to get outside of our small personal world that may feel overwhelming, we are reminded that our world is very interconnected. Even in a new relationship, this will give you an opportunity to see how your partner is able to give to something outside of him/herself. In the end, giving to others can be very rewarding to ourselves. Here are a few suggestions: fundraising 5k, volunteer to serve the homeless, Habitat for Humanity, Hospice, Pet Helpers Shelter, SCDNR Loggerhead turtle rescue, Literacy advocate or simply go to www.volunteermatch.org.
- Gift of a great date. Once a week or once a month, whichever fits your collective schedule, but take turns planning a date. Alternating the responsibility of planning is critical. Many times without a plan, couples can fall into a ho-hum routine that stagnates. If you are parents of young ones, plan a kids in bed/stay in date with rules i.e. no phones, no computer, but plan ahead required. This is also a great way to examine your partner’s personality, spontaneity, creativity, and flexibility. You may find out something you didn’t know about them or get turned on to a new hobby.
What are some of your favorite date activities? What was your favorite date ever? What was your best first date? Send me your ideas and my next installment will be a “best of” list for great dates.