I confess! I’m obsessed with the science of love and relationships! If you read my previous blog post you get a pretty good idea on how I view love.
In the latest book I read, The Compound Effect, I picked up something very interesting; what the author, Darren Hardy, does to achieve his goal to deepen the love and intimacy of his marriage. To some, this might sound very stiff and has too much planning in it. In fact, it sounds like that to me too, but I really do think it works in the long run. Perfect for a married couple or a long term relationship.
Here’s what he does; he has designed a weekly, monthly, quarterly and yearly schedule;
Every week, Hardy and his wife have a date night on Fridays where they totally disconnect from work. This night continues with a ‘family day’ on Saturday where none of them do any work and just spend time with each other and family. That’s a great way to both go all in on work during the rest of the week and then focus fully on each other and the relationship during Friday night and Saturday.
Every Sunday they also sit down to have something very interesting they call a ‘relationship review’. This might sound not romantic at all and he says this himself in the book but if you actually want a long term relationship or even a marriage to work and stay strong, this could be a very powerful tool. What Hardy and his wife do is that they review how their relationship has been during the week. First the wins and all the things they appreciated especially. Then they rank their relationship on a scale from one to ten (ten being the best) and ask what they could have done to get it to a ten. Here comes the discussion of the less good things, but in a calm way. This could be a tool for those who have a hard time giving constructive critique or receiving critique (guilty!). Just like Hardy writes, they both feel heard after this review and they both know what they need to work on for the next week.
Every month the couple schedule something special and memorable. It could be having a spa-day or a day away somewhere in a city close by. Creating memories is one of the most beautiful things you can do in a relationship, but also one of the healthiest as it boosts and strengthens it. Then you both can look back at all the things you’ve experienced together and smile.
Every quarter the Hardys plan a short get away for two-three days. And every year they also have one longer vacation and their holiday traditions.
I think what Hardy means by all this planning, is that having things for your relationship scheduled is just as important as scheduling everything else you want to succeed in. If you want to have a successful marriage, you have to put in effort. And frankly I really like this yearly-, quarterly-, monthly- and weekly scheduling. In the long run, this is going to make you pay attention to your partner and your relationship regularly and that is very very important.
Hardy and his wife schedules;
- A date night
- A family day without work
- A ‘Relationship Review’
- Something memorable
- A two-three day get away
- Special vacation
- Holiday traditions
What do you think about this planning? Would you consider doing it or not?