For A Change - Try A Quickie!
by Sandra A Miller
What exactly is going on in your
relationship? When you're finished with each busy day,
doing the dinner dishes, checking email, checking out
cute shoes online, and finally, if you have kids,
putting them to bed, you and your partner probably have
about ten minutes left for each other. That's it. Ten
minutes that you most likely squander. Ten precious
minutes, that if used well, could revitalize your whole
How is that? Well, with a Quickie, of course.
No, not that kind of Quickie'though those can also go a long way toward bringing you closer'but I'm talking about a communication Quickie. A fun, fast, male-friendly self-help skill that will get you and your partner talking in a real way in the limited time that your hectic lives allow. It's so easy that I'm going to teach you the technique right here. By the time you have finished reading this short article, you will have a small but powerful tool for implementing huge changes in your relationship.
Here's how to do it in five easy steps:
1. SUGGEST - Mention to your partner that you'd like to have a Quickie. Watch his eyes light up. Aha! You've got him interested. So already you're better off than if you'd said, Honey, I'd like to sit down and have a no-fun, serious and potentially interminable talk with you tonight. How does that sound?
But before he pulls you into the bedroom or down on the couch, gently explain that this is a different kind of Quickie. It will only take ten minutes, but you are going to use the time to get closer . Chances are good, he'll be intrigued enough to stay with it.
2. TIME IT ' Set a clock, cell phone or kitchen timer for five minutes. That's it. You may have substantially more to say than five minutes allows, but the idea is to start off slowly and build up. This is not the time to solve all of your issues as a couple. It is a chance to set a foundation of good communication in your relationship.
3. MAKE SPACE ' Find a place where you can sit comfortably close. Make sure all music and media are turned off and the kids are asleep or fully occupied. If you've only got ten minutes, those ten minutes should not be full of distractions.
When you are comfortably settled, hold hands. It might feel strange, but trust me on this one. A physical connection is hugely important in establishing an emotional connection.
4. JUST TALK ' That's right. Simple. One of you is going to start first and talk for five minutes about whatever. Well, almost whatever. This is not the time to get into heavy relationship issues or take a completely disparaging look at the past several years of your life. Keep it light in the beginning. Fill him in on your day or parts of your life that feel important, but you haven't had time to discuss. Catch him up. Make some contact with the person you share your life with now, and perhaps, forever. Again, don't use these Quickies to accuse or blame. Use them to connect as a couple.
5. JUST LISTEN ' While one person is talking, the other is going to listen quietly and non-judgmentally. That's right. The listener is not going to say a word. Why? Well, how often in your day does someone really listen to you for five full minutes? People are usually too busy thinking of a response to really pay attention to your words. So, this is a treat, the caviar of communication. Relish it.
After one of you has spoken for five minutes, stop and switch roles. And that's it. Do this at least three times a week to build this skill into a natural and obvious way of communicating on every issue you face as a couple. Again, key to making a Quickie work well is not using the time to attack your partner. Speak about your own feelings and listen with thoughtful attention. The idea is to bring you closer. And, Quickie by Quickie, this technique will.
For more information go to HaveAQuickie.net where Sandra and her psychologist husband offer further relationship guidance.