5 Relationship Goals You Can Make in 2018

5 relationship goals to make this year

This week Mr. M and I have been getting up early, I’ve been putting my makeup on at home rather than at my desk at work, and we’re actually eating breakfast every day. (Something we never do.) Hashtag New Year, New Us! I’m kidding. But really, we are both trying to be more intentional throughout our day.

On New Year’s night, we sat down and went through a journal together chronicling the highlight moments of this past year. We also talked about what we wanted 2018 to look like for us individually and as a couple as well. You could say that we made. . . relationship goals.

In the spirit of the new year, I think that goals help to restructure, refocus, and realign with your spouse. And this doesn’t necessarily have to be something that is done only in January. You can do it on your anniversary, your birthday, or a random Tuesday night. There is just something about newness that brings about excitement and hope for change.

Why You Should Make Relationship Goals

An Opportunity for Evaluation

Relationship goals are not something that you make for your significant other. Setting goals for your relationship is an opportunity to evaluate what you are doing now, and tweak something to make you a better couple together. For instance, like I said earlier this week, Mr. M and I realized we were watching WAY too much TV. Mr. M was never much of a TV watcher until he met me in the midst of a Grey’s Anatomy binge. It’s how I cope with stress – I binge watch TV.

An Opportunity for Change

So Mr. M  and I decided (without even saying anything really to each other) to stop watching as much TV. Over the past week, I have watched one thing total: a documentary (Living on a Dollar a Day – I highly recommend; it’s on Netflix!) We have filled up our no-TV time with other things: spending time with friends, working out, and going to bed at a semi-decent time.

The Benefit of Relationship Goals

Growth

Setting aside time to evaluate and make new goals gives you and your partner a safe space to be vulnerable in areas you have struggled with, and come together and hold each other accountable with encouragement and support. I am a firm believer that it takes healthy conflict to grow with your partner. While setting relationship goals may not require conflict (although let’s be real, sometimes it happens), it does require you to push each other towards something (which also can cause conflict when you’re feeling particular insecure on any given day.)

Connection

It’s easy to get into a rut and into the routine of things without even realizing that you have not spend any quality time with your partner. In the Christmas season, Mr. M’s work is so busy that the only time we spent together was either when we were with other people, or when I was helping him at work get everything ready for the Christmas distribution. While this isn’t the greatest example of a rut or a routine, both Mr. M and I have a tendency to become tunnel visioned and hyper-focused on one thing when we are busy. So during the slow times, we take advantage of the opportunity by refocusing onto our mission statement for our family and for our lives. When we consider our purpose separately and together, we are able to prioritize and connect with each other.

Related: 5 Ways to Connect in the Busy Seasons

5 Relationship Goals to Make This Year

5 Relationship Goals You Can Make This Year

Now, I’m not one to tell you what to do. But I’m a first born, so take with it what you will.

Financial Goals

Way back when – last year, in December of 2017 – I was excited dreaming up about the New Year and all the goals I wanted to make. And then Mr. M stifled my creativity by suggesting we make financial goals. Blegh. My financial goal is to buy new workout leggings, I don’t know why we need more than that. (I’m kidding, Dave Ramsey.)

The New Year is a great time to sit down and reassess your budget. Where are you spending too much? (Local coffee shops.) Where can you pull back from to save more? (Local coffee shops*)

*On an unrelated note, please send coffee gift cards.

Health Goals

Y’all. Marriage Happy Weight is nooo joke. I was one of those people who was like, “I will not gain weight!” It’s not even that my diet has changed much, so maybe it’s just my mid-20 metabolism slowing down. Who knows. But in line with the New Year, everyone seems to be making fitness goals, so why not make one together as a couple?

Determine to work out x number of times a week, take a fitness class together, or commit to cooking more, looking at labels (WHY IS THERE CORN SYRUP IN EVERYTHING?!) and eating out less.

Date Night Goals

This year I am determined to read Gary Chapman’s “Five Love Languages” because I am so obsessed with talking about our love languages. While you as a couple may not experience “quality time” as your primary love language, spending time together is STILL incredibly important. Mr. M and I try to have date night every Monday night. Sometimes we go out, or sometimes we stay in and cook together. Often we take turns planning the date night, and may choose to plan it in a way that caters to that person’s love language.

This year, commit to spending quality time with your significant other! Pick one night a week, or one night a month and devote that time for each other. Block off that time and protect it, because it is so easy to let stuff slip in the way.

Travel Goals

If we had the money, I would quit my job and travel the world. Or maybe find a way to work while traveling the world. But instead, we settle for little getaways here and there right now. If you and your partner haven’t traveled much in the past, make this year your year! I am confident that traveling brings you closer – even if it is just a six hour drive to visit family. You get to see your partner on “vacation mode” and all the joys and stresses that come with it.

Sit down, map out one or two places you want to visit this year, and then start to save for it! (This is where those financial goals come in handy.)

Family Goals

While Mr. M and I are a family of two right now, we each have quite a bit of people in our immediate and extended family. So our family goals this year look more like going to visit family and spending intentional time with our immediate family.

For those of you who have kids, family goals can be as fun as “have a family movie night once a month” or “take family pictures this year.” Whatever works for you!

5 relationship goals to make this year

Have Patience in Your Relationship Goals

Goal setting can be fun this time of year, but it can also be overwhelming. I’ve decided the first week of January feels like one big syllabus day. You’re making changes and setting goals, and sometimes you can feel bogged down by the potential! So have patience with yourself and with your spouse as you make active and healthy changes for your relationship this year!

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Mastering Communication in Your Marriage

 

mastering communication in your marriage

Communication is something we have been doing all our lives. We communicate with our words, our actions, our face, our body language. You would think that by our 20s, we are pros at this. Not quite yet. I imagine we will never fully have our communication under control until we have reached perfection in heaven.

Mr. M and I spent the first two years of our relationship with intention. While we were dating, we decided to have the hard conversations that most newlyweds wait until after the engagement or the wedding day to have. Working through the hard conversations beforehand allowed us to spend our first year of marriage available to grow and mature in ways that would not have been possible if we decided to wait until the “I Do’s” to start having the hard conversations. The hard conversations gave us a foundation in communication. And although we’ve been together for 3 1/2 years, we’re still finding out more about how we give and receive in our communication styles.

mastering communication in your marriage

Communication & Expectations

Older men and women, along with every marriage help book will tell you the biggest key to a strong marriage is COMMUNICATION. And beyond communication, it is communicating your EXPECTATIONS.   We all have different expectations when it comes to housework, finances, parenting, sex. You name it, you have an expectation for it.

Read more here.

Today I’m guest posting over at Sincerely Onyi. Onyi is a Physician Assistant, Millennial Mommy, Long Distance Wife,  1st gen Nigerian-American, and Blogger.