Let’s be honest: It’s a hard time for relationships.
Most couples are not used to spending as much time together as they need to do during times of self-quarantine and social isolation.
For many relationships, this is a hard examination, and a bunch of them will probably fail.
Being together all day every day might sound romantic for those who just fell in love, but the reality for the majority looks differently.
My boyfriend and I have been spending all our days together for more than half a year.
Not because we have to but because we chose to do so.
We run a business together, and right from the beginning of our relationship, spending all our time together was our goal.
Even though it never was and still isn’t easy, it’s totally worth it.
We’d rather argue with each other than spend more than eight hours per day separately as most couples do.
However, over the past months, we realized some rules are necessary to stay in love, productive, and sane when being next to your partner all day long.
The Rule of Four
Did you know it needs four positive experiences to overcome a bad one?
This applies to all areas of our lives, but it’s particularly relevant for relationships, especially these days.
Even if our partner practices two acts of kindness, we tend to ignore them once he or she makes a single mistake.
As we want to avoid arguments as much as possible these days, following the rule of four and focusing on experiencing positivity together is highly relevant.
We are all being bombarded with negative news, and insecurities may be present in all of us.
To compensate for all this negativity, lots of positive experiences and emotions are necessary.
Instead of pinpointing at the mistakes of your partner, why not do them little favors during the day?
Talk to your partner openly, tell him or her about the rule of four, and agree on giving your best to perform small, positive acts all day long.
Additionally, you can brainstorm about a few ways to bring some more joy into your days.
For example, by watching movies you both like or listening to your favorite music and dancing to it.
Or you could take a look at old photos, plan some trips you want to make once all of this is over or cook your favorite meal together.
Whatever made both of you happier and more relaxed during regular days should be on your agenda for your days during times of self-quarantine.
Plan your days
Even if each day somehow looks the same, doing some planning can be the key to being happier in quarantine.
For example, you could prepare a meal plan so that you don’t have to spend too much time worrying about which groceries to buy and what to eat.
But you could also schedule some essential time blocks in advance.
This might include a fun activity together or some time separate from each other.
As our priorities these days are totally different from our average days, we can quickly get overwhelmed and spend too much time doing things that don’t serve us.
Doing some planning is a great way to focus on the things that are necessary and have more time for doing high-quality activities with your partner, your kids, or yourself.
Get some me-time
Being surrounded by someone all day long is unusual for most people.
Even if you need to stay at the same house, getting some me-time and practicing self-care can be priceless.
You might go for a walk without your partner, or you could just stay in separate rooms for an hour or so to ensure you don’t cling to each other all the time.
Respecting each other’s boundaries is more important now as they become invisible, and some time alone is the best way to get the amount of privacy you might need.
This might not sound like a big deal, but it can have a significant impact on your mental health and wellbeing.
One of the many things you could do during your time alone is meditating.
Standing still for a few moments and focusing on our inside is so powerful and particularly needed right now.
Even a few minutes of meditation will help you to enhance your immune system, reduce feelings of depression, anxiety, and confusion, provide a sense of peace and balance, and increase your energy.
Additionally, taking a few calm minutes to focus on your breathing will help you to better deal with conflicts if they should arise.
Being confused or even anxious these days is not unusual.
We are all facing a challenge we’ve never seen before, and we might have emotions we can’t immediately deal with.
That’s why communicating openly and asking for what you want is more important than ever before.
Even if it’s tempting to get into the role of a victim and accuse your partner of not understanding you, it’s not the right time to do so.
We’re all in this together, and your partner might be as uncertain as you.
Don’t expect anyone to understand your desires and read your mind if you don’t communicate clearly.
Saying what we mean and asking for what we really want can be tremendous game-changers.
“I would love it if you could plan dinner every second night” is a simple sentence but communicated openly, and in the right tone, it could make your life much more comfortable.
We are all facing unusual times.
Not only our mental health, but also our relationships need to stay particularly strong until all of this is over.
Even couples who might be totally fine before and after the pandemic might face struggles when being together 24/7 for several weeks.
Applying some of these tips and giving yourself enough space might be critical to get over the next few weeks and months.
Just keep in mind that you don’t need to be perfect or figure anything out by yourself.
We’re all humane, and we’re all in this together.
But let’s give our best to make this whole situation as comfortable as possible by being kind, forgiving quickly, and putting effort into making each other and ourselves happier each day.