Life is hectic, with so many challenges and daily distractions to keep us busy and exhausted. Many of us struggle to find time for rest, relaxation, and rejuvenation. Does this sound familiar to you?
When you have careers, a marriage, a family, and outside obligations, it’s easy to let your needs fall by the wayside. Oftentimes, sleep and self-care are the first things to go when you’re overwhelmed. But in order to live life to its fullest, you and your spouse both need to know how to make more time for rest so you can refresh yourselves on a regular basis.
The daily demands of life are important, yes. However, making plenty of time to recharge is equally critical. When you and your spouse work together to make time for rest, you both win. As a result, you’ll both be more successful individuals, and you’ll be a step closer to a healthier marriage.
Now, let’s talk about how you can work together to focus on getting the downtime you both need.
1. SHARE WHAT MAKES YOU FEEL RESTED AND RELAXED.
Talk about what makes you feel rested and relaxed. No matter how long you’ve been together, it’s good to do an occasional check-in. People’s preferences can change over time, and it’s possible that one or both of you might have discovered a new way to recharge that you weren’t aware of before.
Sometimes, we just lose touch with the simple things we enjoy because we’re so busy. We can get overwhelmed, stuck in our heads, and disconnected from our own wellbeing. Take a little time to remind each other and yourselves of all the ways you prefer to relax, then get to work planning to make that happen.
2. HELP YOUR SPOUSE REST AND REJUVENATE IN THEIR PREFERRED WAY.
Now that you’re familiar with each other’s preferences, find ways to help your spouse relax. Create opportunities for them using your newly-refreshed awareness of what helps them feel better. Maybe they’d like to take more long baths or get a massage more often. On the other hand, they might want to be left in silence with a good book, a cozy blanket, and a cup of coffee.
Try to anticipate times when your spouse might enjoy winding down. Making opportunities for them to relax in their favorite ways could build goodwill in your relationship and help you grow closer.
3. SEE THROUGH YOUR SPOUSE’S EYES.
It might seem counterintuitive, but give your spouse’s favorite form of R&R a try at least once. Agreeing to swap could help you both gain insight into one another. And, who knows–you might find that you enjoy taking a walk in each other’s shoes for a day.
If your spouse loves to go fishing, go with them. Or, if they prefer a relaxing afternoon walk, go along sometime. Invite your spouse to a meditation class or kick back together in front of your favorite movie. The point of sharing these experiences is for the two of you to not only grow closer, but recharge in the process.
4. WORK TOGETHER TO REDUCE STRESS IN YOUR LIFE.
A major part of rest and rejuvenation is reducing stress in general. If you and your spouse can work together to lower the stress level in your life, then you should absolutely do so. Opening up breathing room will give you both a chance to create more opportunities for rest.
To reduce stress in your life:
- Identify stressful situations and dynamics and discuss what you can do to improve them
- Reduce extraneous obligations and commitments that you’re no longer excited about or able to keep
- Adjust your expectations and see how you can work together to shake up the status quo (such as dividing your responsibilities differently, looking to make a career change, or setting healthier boundaries in your relationships)
5. PLAN REGULAR GETAWAYS.
Here, we use the term “getaways” loosely! You can certainly travel away from home together, but you might also find that a nice staycation is in order. A getaway doesn’t have to look a certain way, and it doesn’t have to be a big, extravagant trip to help you both feel deeply rested afterward.
Consider your options, then figure out how you’re going to make it happen. Remember, even a weekend at home with your phones turned off can work wonders. When you rest–and help one another get the rest you both need–you’ll both feel more ready to take on whatever challenges come your way. You’re on the same team, so have each other’s backs!
The truth is, our relationships are only as healthy as we are. If you both want to get healthier, reducing stress is just one piece of the puzzle.