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HOW COUPLES STAY TOGETHER
One of the ways to keep a healthy relationship is by communicating. Communication is not just about talking about how your day went or telling your partner latest news about the Kardashians, communication is about connecting with him or her.
Connecting with your partner means getting to the core and meeting their needs. Unfortunately, if those needs are not met within your relationship, that’s when he or she tends to look for those needs met from another person.
According to Tony Robbins, there are 6 human needs. These are:
1. Certainty: assurance you can avoid pain and gain pleasure
2. Uncertainty/Variety: the need for the unknown, change, new stimuli
3. Significance: feeling unique, important, special or needed
4. Connection/Love: a strong feeling of closeness or union with someone or something
5. Growth: an expansion of capacity, capability or understanding
6. Contribution: a sense of service and focus on helping, giving to and supporting others
You and your partner may value different needs to find out each other’s top 3 needs and meet those needs as often as you can. It will require time and altruism from both partners to fulfill each other’s needs.
MY EXPERIENCE WITH MY HUSBAND
My husband and I both work from home so that means we’re together 24/7. A few weeks ago, I was complaining to him that we haven’t spent any quality time together. He gave me an incredulous look and said, “We’re together ALL the time! What do you mean we haven’t spent quality time together?” Understanding each other’s expectations on how the needs manifest is a vital discussion when identifying which needs are valuable to both you and your partner.
I value quality time and in the 6 human needs listed above, connection/love is my 2nd or perhaps the highest one on my list. I need to feel connected to my husband and that means tapping into the physical and emotional areas in his life that no one else has access to. To me, that looks like having open and vulnerable discussions and how we can improve and grow in our relationship.
WHY VULNERABILITY IS IMPORTANT IN THE RELATIONSHIP
While I love my husband’s presence, there are times when I don’t know what else is new to talk to him about. I know I’m not the only one – after being with your partner all the time, it may start to feel like you’ve talked about everything and the only thing left to talk about is logistics or finances. Completely normal, but also completely unacceptable if you’re looking to keep a strong connection with your partner in the long run.
Opening yourself up to your partner and allowing them into the most vulnerable parts of you can be a scary feeling. However, Brene Brown says, “Vulnerability is the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, courage, empathy, and creativity. It is the source of hope, empathy, accountability, and authenticity.” The questions below is to not only spark conversation but to get to know your partner and connect with him or her on a heart-to-heart level.
HERE ARE SOME QUESTIONS TO ASK YOUR PARTNER IF YOU’VE BEEN IN A RELATIONSHIP FOR A WHILE AND THE CONVERSATIONS ARE STARTING TO FEEL REPETITIVE:
1. What advice would you tell your 25-year-old self?
2. If your future self went back in time, what would he/she tell you?
3. If someone gave you $100, what would you spend it on?
4. When is a good time to keep a secret?
5. What is your definition of cheating?
6. What is your favorite date we’ve had? Why?
7. How can I be a better partner to you this week?
8. What is one thing we can work on to be better partners?
9. When was the last time you felt loved?
10. What is one thing or activity that makes you feel alive?
11. What makes you feel appreciated?
12. What is one thing you learned this week?
13. What is one word that describes our relationship?
14. What has been your greatest accomplishment this year?
15. What’s your favorite memory of us in the last 5 or 10 years?
16. Is there something you miss that we used to do?
17. What do wish you could spend more time on?
18. Describe each other in three words.
19. What is one thing you wish I would compliment you more on?
20. What have you learned about being married or together that you would impart to a newly engaged or other couples?
21. When do you feel closest to me?
22. What can I do to make you feel more confident about us and our future?
23. What other ways can I better show you my appreciation?
24. What is your favorite part of our relationship?
25. What adventure would you like to do in the next few months?
26. What traditions would you like to start this year?
27. Is there something that annoys you that I do that I need to be mindful of or stop doing?
28. Who has been inspiring you lately?
29. What mutual goal would you like to see us accomplish in the next 5 years?
30. What has gotten you excited these days?
31. What is the most memorable life advice you received?
32. Five years from now, how do you envision our life together?
33. What is one thing you wish I did for you but I don’t?
34. What do you envy from other people’s relationship?
35. What is your biggest strength in our relationship?
36. What is your weakness strength in our relationship?
37. My sexiest feature is…
38. In what ways do we work well together?
39. Is there a memory or secret that I don’t know about?
40. When was the last time you felt taken care of?
41. What do you appreciate about me?
42. When was the last time you felt like I didn’t appreciate you?
43. What is your dream for us?
44. If you had to change one thing about me, what would you change?
45. What’s your biggest fear in our relationship?
46. What do you think I need the most these last few days?
47. What do I do that turns you on the most?
48. What is your favorite way to show your love to me?
49. Is there anything you feel insecure about our relationship?
50. What is the most valuable lesson you learned about your past relationship or our relationship?
51. In what ways do you feel satisfied in our relationship?
52. How do you think we should handle our disagreement differently?
53. How can I better support you?
54. What values are important to you?
55. How would you like to spend your free time?
56. How can we add more value to our quality time?
57. What has overwhelmed you recently?
58. Was there something in the past or this week that you need to forgive me for?
59. What are your hopes and dreams for our children, me, and us?
60. What do you think my strengths are? What are my weaknesses?
61. In what ways do you have I changed compared to when we started dating?
62. What do you wish we could do more of?
63. Are there areas in our lives that need to be improved?
64. What has made you laugh or brought you joy this week?
65. How can I be a better spouse or partner to you?
66. What food have you been really loving lately?
67. What movie do you think would reflect our relationship?
68. The one thing that made me laugh that you did was…
69. What spontaneous things have you done this month?
70. I was proud of you when…
71. What is the best part of our relationship/marriage?
72. The one thing that I couldn’t have done without you was…
73. What do you like about our life together?
74. What is one thing that didn’t work out in the past but you’re so glad for it?
75. Name 5 things you’re grateful for.
76. What is a topic that you feel you could feel lost in for hours?
77. What are you looking forward to this week?
78. What has made you cry or upset recently?
79. What is the strangest thing you’ve done?
80. If we were able to be youthful forever, how would you live your life differently now?
• Being in a relationship is not just about communicating, but connecting with your partner.
• Find out what their needs are and try to meet them as often as possible.
• Have safe and open conversations where both of you can open up or be vulnerable to each other.
• Have fun with these questions!
I WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU
Did I miss any questions? What other questions would you ask your partner? How do you ensure you’re connecting with your partner?
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