By Ty Salvant
How much time a day do you spend communicating with your spouse? Research shows that married couples on average spend less than 10 minutes a day in meaningful dialogue. That’s not to say that they aren’t talking to each other at all, but with work, family and life responsibilities, couples’ conversations tend to focus on putting out fires or addressing needs as opposed to having a meaningful exchange.
Even when on date nights, conversation typically turns towards the children, family, bills or house repairs instead of deepening your relationship. When this happens, it can become more of a “dinner meeting” than a date.
As individuals, we continue to grow and change, and if we don’t make time to share these things with our spouses, we may unintentionally drift apart. Purposeful conversations often stem from shared experiences, so while it might seem counterintuitive to go to a movie on your date night, it provides a conversation starter. In addition to the likeability, plot and message of the movie, you could discuss alternate endings, relationship successes or failures, cinematography, casting, the impact of the movie on society and so on. You could reminisce about your first date together or any type of experience that you could relate to from the movie, or it can lead to you dreaming again and thinking about what you would do if …
My challenge to you is this: whether morning, midday or after dinner, spend 10 minutes a day for the next week in intentional dialogue with your spouse. Bonus points if the kids are around to witness it. After all, we model the spousal relationship to our children. If they don’t see us connecting, laughing, praying and helping each other, they won’t see these things as natural parts of a married couple’s relationship.