By Toby Lieder
We try to do our date night on a Motzoei Shabbos, since we are still in a relaxed mood from Shabbos. We do this because we want to make the most out of spending quality time together.
Date nights are critical to all romantic relationships and at every stage of one’s relationship. They help us reconnect as a couple.
As time goes on however, unfortunately, the need to spend quality time together often fall into one’s blind spot. Here’s what we can do to make it actually happen and last.
1. Make it regular
It may be once a week or once a month but knowing that it’s on the agenda creates a positive staple in one’s relationship. It’s critically important not to allow stress or daily pressures to creep into our time together. Use it wisely. It’s an investment that money cannot buy.
2. Take turns planning
We should take turns planning the night out. This way neither one will harbor resentment. And it goes without saying that the more consistent we will be, the more our time out together will benefit our relationship.
3. Make your dates a phone-free zone!
Put away our cell phone and focus on your partner. If you need to check-in with the babysitter do so once per hour. Don’t answer business or unimportant calls! Ask ourselves if it can wait. It usually can. This is the only way your partner will feel that s/he is your priority.
4. Keep conversation upbeat and light
Tell yourself this is “US” time. It’s not the time to offer corrective criticism or fix anything.
Save those problem-solving issues for ‘Business Meetings’.
Here are the Do’s and the DON’TS:
-Do not talk about the children
-Do not talk about work
-Do not talk about other’s family or friends.
-Do not talk about problem solving
-Do not talk about money
-Do not criticize or be negative
You might be asking yourself what’s left to talk about? (Lol)
Well, here are some relationship-healthy examples:
-Talk about the times you were once dating and when you were first married.
-Delete anything and everything in your mind that may distract you from living the moment.
-Be present in the now.
-Discuss your dreams and goals.
-Count the many things you are grateful for.
-Discuss your blessings and notice how many there are.
-Find the good in your spouse and talk about it, a lot.
-Share your most inner thoughts. Be vulnerable.
5. Listen to each other without interruption.
Acknowledge that we understand what the other is saying and repeat it back to him/her.
We know we can do this, because we did it during the first phases of our relationship. Remember, we gravitate towards people that make us feel good, and to those that give us a good time and make us laugh. We connect well will those that understand us, share a common interest and stimulate our minds. You can even talk about each other and what we both enjoy about being in the moment of a date night and how enjoyable it is to just spend time together. Seize these precious moments to just be.
6. Break patterns and learn new things about each other.
A game of monopoly or scrabble can be fun. Make the most of our time together to get to know our partner. We may be married for years, but there still so much to learn!
Ask our partner where s/he would like to be in five years’ time. Ask each other the most random of questions, their greatest fear, or the best place in the world to go to visit. Dare each other to do something ridiculous that night. Be silly. Have fun together. Your time alone should consist of lighthearted talk, and fun. Imagine doing this into your 80’s consistently, every week!
BUSINESS NIGHT MEETING
We set a time weekly (For example, Wednesday 8:00 pm) specifically to discuss our issues, challenges and criticisms. Saving all problem-solving issues, for our business meetings, enables us to focus all week long on what we are most grateful for. If something bothers us, we write it down or note it on your cell phone. At this business meeting, we have the chance to self-express, being unemotionally attached to the challenges and criticisms, enabling us to actually resolve the issues with more respect, clarity and confidence knowing it will all get attention.
What a comforting feeling knowing all week long that when Wednesday night arrives, everything will be, discussed and properly dealt with. Imagine a criticism free household with only good vibes. There is no greater freedom than peace in the home, work, etc.
Be sure to listen with all our heart and soul to the one sharing what’s on their mind. Acknowledge and repeat back to our partner what we understood. Once feeling acknowledged and understood, we will both think together as a team on how to resolve the issues.
Try using the “I” message:
Instead of blaming the other person by saying you did such and such, say “I feel hurt when this is done to me,” focusing on how it makes you feel, rather than pointing a finger and blaming the other. We will be very surprised at how many urgent matters actually fall off the list by the time the business meeting is in session and how well our issues get resolved when given the specific time and space to review our goals and focus our energy on repairing what needs to be mended in a most productive and peaceful manner.
WIN /WIN FOR ALL RELATIONSHIPS!
All relationships can benefit from the date night/ business night concept. Whether we are living in a dorm, sharing an apartment, or in a work situation, we’re constantly in some form of a relationship. Imagine the positive atmosphere and good vibes we could create by using only positive words all week long knowing that we have an assigned time once a week to discuss any issues or unwanted negative behavior. Time is valuable. Let’s use the time wisely.
Toby Lieder is a mother of 14 children K”H, 13 of which are married B” H.
Toby is a Dating Coach and Shadchan for many years and is a motivational speaker.
Toby Interviews and coaches’ singles from all around the globe.
Her niche is helping singles explore and identify their core values as well as their 5 deal-breakers they seek for in a spouse.
Toby can be contacted for an appointment at: