By Bill & Ginger Bercaw, Pasadena, CA
Nothing will promote intimacy more than consistently sharing your authentic selves with each other. While consistency is key, this need not be an unnecessarily time-consuming process: 3 to 5 minutes with daily shares can absolutely help you stay more connected. You will know at least a little more about each other and will be known a little bit more than before. Sometimes you may find yourselves choosing to discuss in greater detail part of your daily shares.
First, agree to meet at a specific time near the end of the day or evening. In the beginning you might want to experiment and negotiate to see what works best. You each will take a turn sharing with each other using the format below.
1. Express an affirmation. This is a positive statement that is true for you.
- "I appreciate your work ethic"
- "I really admire the way you handled that situation even though it must not have been easy for you."
- I really felt close to you when you put your arm around me last night."
- "I think you smell great!"
2. Share something from your day. It could be something that feels big or something that feels light or even trivial. Something that your partner would not know if you didn't tell them.
- "I ran into Melissa when I was at lunch and I realized how much I miss her friendship."
- "I tried calling the computer support line again but they made me wait forever and I had to hang up before I was even able to talk with anyone. So I got really frustrated and I'm starting to worry that it will never get fixed."
- "I overheard Caleb explaining to Ashley that the tooth fairy will only leave money under the pillow if the tooth doesn't have any cavities. They are so funny sometimes."
3. Share something that's on your radar. Choose a hope, dream, vision or concern. It could be something off in the future or coming up in the next month.
- "I'm really looking forward to our date on Friday."
- "I'm starting to think more about changing my career path."
- "It's going to be so nice to see my sister and her family next week. I've really missed them."
4. Share a request of your partner. There may be times when you truly do not have anything to request, but you are strongly encouraged to try to come up with something.
- "It would mean a lot to me if you could remember to pick up your socks and underwear before you go to work."
- Every time you call me from work it helps me feel loved an appreciated. Please keep doing that!"
- I know I've asked this before, but I'd really like you to hear me this time. I need you to stop talking about our money problems in front of the kids. Could you please promise to wait until we have privacy to have those discussions?"