Editor's note: This is a guest post written by Corey Allan of Simple Marriage
So the week is rocking along and you are full blown into the week's schedule. You find yourself running from one activity to the next, lost in the world of routine. Added to this is the fact the world seems to be moving at a faster and faster pace.
While technology and invention have brought a tremendous amount of improvement to our lives, at what cost? What price do our relationships pay for the pace at which we live life?
If you're like me and my wife, it is sometimes difficult to make time for each other throughout the week. We do see each other every night and rarely schedule things outside of time together with the kids in the evening, but days can go by before one of us will realize that we haven't connected on a deeper level.
We have a goal of simplifying everything we can in order to experience more. It's one of the main premises behind Simple Marriage. If we can slow down and keep things simple, everything gets better!
If you agree with this idea (even if you don't) here's a few ideas that help us keep life and marriage simple:
1. Block out time for each other. While this may seem like a no-brainer, many times it goes undone. It is too easy to get caught up in the routine of the week and only see each other in passing. No relationship worth having can survive for long without time dedicated to its development. Go to dinner together, shop for groceries, go for a walk. Whatever, just do it together.
2. Plan the week together ahead of time. Each Sunday my wife and I have a quick discussion regarding the coming week and each other’s schedule. That way, if there is anything to be reminded of or worked around, there is time to adjust.
3. Email your spouse throughout the week. Anytime we can make contact with the people important in our lives, the relationships are better. Due to the busy nature of people and their unavailability at times during the day, send a quick email. Seeing a note from my wife in the inbox brightens the moment.
4. Keep a clean and organized bedroom. When your surroundings are chaotic and cluttered, your life is as well. It is inevitable that we will be impacted by our surroundings. If you want to experience a romantic and passionate marriage, create the environment for it. Nothing can spoil the beginnings of a spark like clutter and messiness. Put everything in its place in the bedroom, clear off the dressers and nightstands. Clean the floor. Make the bed each morning. It will be much more inviting to go in to later in the day.
5. Turn off all phones. At some point each evening, turn off your phones, or at the very least don’t answer them for a while and spend that time with your spouse and family. Play games, read together, talk.
6. Go on a media fast. We’ve been on a news fast for almost a year. I absolutely love it! Most everything reported today is negative, so why get caught up in it each evening? Don’t worry, with Google and Yahoo, you’ll still know the major things happening in the world.
7. Get rid of your TV. In August my family is doing away with the TV. We are planning to go the entire month, perhaps longer, without watching TV at all. While this will really be no problem for my wife, who watches little TV, it will be a little more difficult for me. I occasionally enjoy the vegetative state TV provides. The biggest hurdle we are facing with this plan is our kids. They are used to cartoons in the mornings - but I imagine after a couple of days of whining and complaining, they'll adjust. (Incidentally, if you are interested in joining us in giving up TV, hop over to Simple Marriage and track our experience as well as share yours.)