Feeling emotionally disconnected? The good news is that you can reconnect with your spouse. But doing so, says Gary Neuman, requires you to be unflinchingly honest with yourself and your behaviors.
You've got to make a commitment to turn things around, set guidelines for your relationship, and work toward a better future together. His four-point connection plan ensures that you and your spouse are constantly putting loving energy into your relationship.
Have Five Touch Points a Day
Touch your spouse lovingly at least five times a day. Kissing, hugging, and hand holding are all healthy touch points. Try to make each touch point meaningful, letting your spouse know that he or she is in your thoughts every day.
Have Four Talk Points a Week
The average couple talks only four minutes a day. It's no wonder spouses don't feel close and loved. Four days a week, plan at least 45 minutes when you can be alone together and do something you both enjoy. These aren't times to talk about problems, but rather to increase your easygoing time together.
Have a Weekly Date Night
One night a week, come hell or high water, you and your spouse should go out alone to enjoy each other's company. You can do anything, go anywhere, and talk about anything except three things: money, children, and work (unless it's exciting stuff—for example, I got a promotion).
The Honeymoon Night
At least once a month (this may coincide with date night), plan a fabulous night of romance and lovemaking. Plan the details: a wonderful meal; a fun time out on a date; a romantic movie—anything that screams "romance" to you. Make this the recharging night that will advance your relationship beyond words.
(Adapted from Emotional Infidelity: How to Affair-Proof Your Marriage and 10 Other Secrets to a Great Relationship by M. Gary Neuman)
Published on January 21, 2004