Embracing the New (for Now) Normal

By Aliza Cooper - 01/14/2021


As the saying goes, being in a committed partnership means: “for better and for worse.”  What it also means is: “for different”.  With the ups and downs of this last year, it’s likely that you may have experienced all three.  Within a short period of time, you and your partner went from having a hopefully regular schedule of date activities both alone and with others to being quarantined at home together for 24 hours a day.  Everything has changed in the blink of an eye and with that, it’s important to recognize that your coupleship has shifted, too.  No longer do you have as much time to spend separately, no longer do you have energy after 8:00 pm (it’s funny how staying home all day seems to make us MORE tired), and no longer do you have the luxury of calling up a babysitting and going for dinner. What you do have, however, is an opportunity: the opportunity to be intentional. 

Before COVID came along, most of us tended to take a healthy advantage of the time we had with our partners because it was few and far between.  We led busy lives, went to work, took care of the kids, and date night was more than just something we did, it was the chance many of us looked forward to with which we could ground ourselves in the intimacy that keeps our relationships alive. Like pretty much anything else we have in short supply, we know to make it count.  This in turn, tends to make whatever it is we’re doing more meaningful.  When COVID hit, this shifted in a pretty significant way.  In fact, few things are in greater supply these days than time with our partner.  While at first glance, this seemed to many like a blessing in disguise, what resulted was overlooking that one of the crucial ingredients to a successful coupleship is not just time, it’s INTENTIONAL time.

With this being said, we must be intentional about spending time with our partners by grabbing hold of time for togetherness when the window of opportunity presents itself.  If we don’t, it simply won’t happen in the way we all need to feel fulfilled in our partnership.  Sure, you may find yourself in the same room together more often than you did before, but it’s also likely that you may have noticed that you and your partner have begun to take these moments for granted as they are now the norm versus the exception.  Being intentional about spending time with your partner makes for an increase in meaningful moments. An increase in meaningful moments means deepening connectivity, which in turn, leads to a more intimate relationship.  Quality over quantity is the name of the game here so don’t let you moments slip by.  It can be so tempting to walk by your partner eating lunch at the kitchen table when you have already seen them 10 other times that day.  But try not to, at least not every time.  Take a moment to embrace each other when you happen to be in the same place at the same time.  Take your coffee break simultaneously or go on a walk after work together to decompress.  Whether you take two minutes or two hours, be intentional about making the most out of your time together, even if it often seems as though you do nothing but see your partner.  Remember, there is a difference between seeing and seeing. Your partner, your relationship and most importantly, YOURSELF will thank you for it.

Recent Articles

Subscribe and thrive.

Subscribe to receive the latest stories, thought leadership, and growth strategies from PCS therapists.

© Psychological Counseling Services