Right now, the last thing you're likely thinking about is optimizing your marriage. If you live in the U.S., it's a time of deep uncertainty, stress, and anxiety.
So we thought we'd change it up today. We're going to break from our ordinary format and just give you three ultra-efficient tips for boosting relationship resiliency in stressful times like these.
Your breath is like an inner portal to a state of calm. For one thing, your breath isn't like your mind. Each inhale and exhale isn't happening tomorrow or four years from now (the way thoughts are). It's happening right now. It's an anchor to the present moment.
For another, the science is clear: when we relax, lengthen, and slow down our breathing, we can unwind the tension in our nervous system that creates stress, anxiety, and irritation. A good rule of thumb here is to strive for five count breaths (five counts in, five counts out).
This one's a no brainer. Why wouldn't you give your partner a hug during this wild time?
And here's the thing. There's all sorts of research showing that a single hug has the power to instantly enhance mood and dissolve conflict.
Here's another easy, 30 second practice. Why do it? Marriage researchers have found that the simple act of appreciation has the power to almost instantly change the culture of your relationship.
All you have to do is shift your mindset. Shift from scanning your partner's actions for what they did wrong to looking for what they did right. Then, appreciate them for it.