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Why Checking In Is So Important For Your Relationship

Sign saying 'Begin'We would like to share with you what’s happening in our relationship and how that can be applied by you so as to have a more conflict-free, peaceful relationship.

We’re back from our anniversary trip, and as is our custom, we reviewed our year and talked about what we wanted for ourselves and for the relationship moving forward. We did this while driving down Highway 395. It’s a stunning road down the Eastern flank of the Sierras, a long straight drive with barely any other traffic visible, an austere landscape in the rain shadow of 14,000 ft. mountains; in other words, an ideal setting away from the world that invites reflection.

It was a wonderful talk for a number of reasons. It afforded an opportunity for each of us to look deeper and explore what is important in our lives, both individually and as a couple. The day-to-day events of life can obscure our greater goals; in fact, they are often not clear even to ourselves until we articulate them aloud.

By hearing the other person sharing their personal and mutual goals, we come to understand and respect them, and are able to incorporate them into our awareness and responses. This is intimacy in action.

We both take great joy in seeing the other person changing and growing in life. One of the surprising revelations is that change and growth continue unabated at every stage of life. Our energy is not what it was; we had no plans to hike Mt. Whitney on this trip, but appreciation of life (politics and the environment notwithstanding) continues to be more nuanced. The joy in seeing the other grow is part of the magic of our relationship. We are simultaneously independent and completely simpatico.

This is one of the deep understandings that was reiterated by each of us during our sharing. We are both dedicated to the well-being and development of the other as an individual. As important as our mutual goals and experience are to each of us, just as important is our dedication to further each other and support each other in our individual life paths.

The anniversary, the setting and the time during a long drive all contributed to this conversation, but it’s not something that happens just once a year. We take time to be with each other on a daily basis (our sacred space, we call it), and this gives us the opportunity to maintain our connection. It never breaks. We never have to struggle to regain it.

This is easy to do as we know we can be completely open with each other. There will be no attacks or criticism coming, just true and free sharing.

Checking in with each other in this manner is important to incorporate into a relationship on an ongoing basis. How it is done is not so important as that it is done. If you stay abreast of what is taking center stage for your partner in their personal development, as well as what is important in the mutual experience, your relationship will stay vital and vibrant. It will be a part of a true present reality and not just a memory left over from the past.

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Successful Relationship Reading Corner

BookshelfThis week, we wrote about our anniversary trip where, as is our custom, we reviewed our year and talked about what we wanted for ourselves and for the relationship moving forward. This is not just an annual event; we connect on a daily basis (our Sacred Space.) Checking in with each other is important to incorporate into a relationship on an ongoing basis. Here are a number of writers describing checking in with their partner.

Why Is Checking in so Important? "What is it that extraordinarily happy couples are doing? One of the important things is checking in. Checking in is taking a brief break from the many competing urgencies of our day to first check inside to see what we are experiencing and then to use that brief break to reveal to our partner what we are experiencing."

Don’t Be a Stranger: Checking-In with Your Partner "I have had a number of first sessions with couples where one of them ends up saying some variation of “I didn’t know.” Whether that is “I didn’t know you were so unhappy,” or “I didn’t know we were in such a bad place” or even “I didn’t know I was so miserable.” ... I would like to recommend one tool that can help to increase emotional connection and a couple’s ability to truly know each other: frequent check-ins."

The Weekly Check-In: How One New Habit Transformed Our Relationship "How does one hour of alone time with your spouse completely change the dynamic of your relationship? I don't really know, but that's what has happened for my husband Alan and I.  So, we decided one day that we were going to do a check-in once a week, on Sundays. What we couldn't predict was how much of an impact the simple act of meeting over bubble tea with a sketchpad and a pen would have on our relationship, and not only that, but in our businesses as well."


Spreading peace one relationship at a time
Phil and Maude
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