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6 Ways to Reconnect with Your Spouse in 10 Minutes a Day or Less

Working Mother logo Working Mother 9/24/2018 Jessica N. Turner
a man talking on a cell phone: Something as small as a kiss on the lips that’s more than a fast peck can foster much-needed intimacy. © iStock Something as small as a kiss on the lips that’s more than a fast peck can foster much-needed intimacy.

If you are feeling stretched too thin and that your spouse is getting the short end of the stick, try one of these simple tactics to reconnect.

a person posing for the camera: Jessica N. Turner is the author of the new book, Stretched Too Thin: How Working Moms Can Lose the Guilt, Work Smarter, and Thrive. She is also a corporate marketing executive and online entrepreneur. She and her husband, Matthew, live in Nashville, TN, with their three active children. Visit StretchedTooThinBook.com, or follow her on Instagram at @JessicaNTurner. © Melissa Morgan Photography Jessica N. Turner is the author of the new book, Stretched Too Thin: How Working Moms Can Lose the Guilt, Work Smarter, and Thrive. She is also a corporate marketing executive and online entrepreneur. She and her husband, Matthew, live in Nashville, TN, with their three active children. Visit StretchedTooThinBook.com, or follow her on Instagram at @JessicaNTurner.

When the workday is done, the kids are in bed, and the dishes are loaded in the dishwasher, many working parents find it difficult to muster the energy to turn their attention to each other and connect in meaningful ways. In a survey conducted for my new book Stretched Too Thin: How Working Moms Can Lose the Guilt, Work Smarter, and Thrive, two-thirds of working moms cited that making time for their spouse or significant other was a challenge.

Some of the comments they shared included:

My husband and I are so busy and tired that we “forget” to pay attention to each other.

I feel as if I have become a roommate to my husband. I love and adore him, but I have no energy after taking care of the kids. I miss him dearly, but I feel as if I have nothing left to give.

Having both my husband and me working leads me to feel that we lead separate lives, and communication becomes a challenge on top of the general difficulty in making time for us.

Sound familiar? If you feel like you need to reconnect with your spouse, here are six ways that take just five to 10 minutes. Doing something is better than doing nothing. Don’t let your relationship atrophy because you have a lot on your plate. A marriage needs to be invested in to thrive.

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1. Write a love letter.

It doesn’t have to be Shakespeare to be meaningful. Last week I took a school newsletter, folded it in half and wrote, “You are a great dad. I love you,” and left it on my husband’s laptop.

2. Ask for help.

If you need help, ask your spouse for it. Your spouse is not a mind reader. By being vulnerable enough to say, “I need help with XYZ,” you empower your spouse to step in, and you empower yourself by verbalizing your needs. Asking for help prevents friction and resentment and fosters connection in a very practical way.

3. Show affection.

Something as small as a quick shoulder rub, a grab of the hand or a kiss on the lips that’s more than a fast peck can foster needed intimacy and love. Be generous with your affection for your spouse.

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4. Read something together.

Choose a book you will both enjoy, and end the day reading to each other. Don’t get caught up in the genre of the book—whatever is appealing will suffice. The nurturing atmosphere of reading aloud paves the way for a connection with your spouse.

5. Send a sexy text.

Sometimes a midday text ping to let your spouse know you are thinking of him is the perfect way to add some fire to your relationship. Just be sure his phone notifications won’t show anything too steamy. You don’t want to create an uncomfortable moment during a work meeting.

6. Practice active listening.

When having a conversation, face each other, and look into each other’s eyes. Put down electronic devices and turn off the television. Don’t listen with an ear for how you are going to respond. Instead, completely focus on listening to your spouse. It sounds simple—and it is—but if you have been in a habit of not actively listening to one another, this change in approach will make a big difference.

We all go through busy seasons at work and with our families. If you are feeling stretched too thin and that your spouse is getting the short end of the stick, try one of these simple tactics to reconnect.

Suggested: 25 Things Happy Couples Never Do (Provided by Espresso)

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