10 Tips for Effective Communication With Spouse in Quarantine
Do you find yourself looking up on the internet, “how to meaningfully connect with a partner,” or “improve communication with spouse” during these unprecedented times?
In the age of social distancing and stay-at-home orders, many couples are spending more time together than ever before.
For some, this has presented new relationship challenges; creating conflicts, hurdles, and unprecedented hardships.
Stress and anxiety have dramatically increased worldwide, which has inevitably impacted marriages. As we all struggle to manage our emotions and navigate these times, it’s important to maintain a strong bond with your spouse through successful communication.
This might mean more frequently using the communication tools you and your spouse already use, or implementing new communication strategies.
Communication during quarantine is no easy feat. Below you’ll find a list of tactics and tools that will help you and your spouse meaningfully connect and effectively communicate during quarantine.
1. Honesty first
Now is not the time to hide anything from your partner.
Communicate frequently, openly, and honestly with each other about what you need and how you’re feeling. If you need some space, say so; if you’re feeling scared, tell your spouse; if you’re upset, let them know.
Check-in with each other on a deeper level, “how are you really”, at least once a day.
Being direct is essential, so is swiftness.
So, why is effective communication important? Because, it’s easy to let resentment build when you’re staying home together, so if you feel annoyed or hurt by your spouse’s actions, be quick to communicate that (using “I” statements) and talk it out.
2. Keep dating
Just because you’re in quarantine does not mean you should stop dating!
In fact, prioritizing in-home dates and creating special moments is much more important in this environment.
Shared activities can spark communication, help you connect on a deeper level, and remind you that you married someone amazing and together you can get through anything.
Schedule time for dates weekly, and think outside the box to find new exciting ways to spend time together while staying home.
Need help crafting at-home dates? Here are some ideas.
3. Divide up the duties
On how to communicate better with your spouse, work with your spouse to divide up the household duties.
This includes chores, cleaning, planning, grocery shopping, cooking, and parenting.
Make sure that everything is not falling to one person and overwhelming them.
By incorporating effective communication in marriage, you can come up with a schedule to make sure everything gets done (we know, it’s not the sexiest couples activity, but it’s so important!)
Since you’re at home more, your chore schedule may have to change.
Increase your awareness of what needs to be done and ask each other “is there anything I can do to help?” often.
4. Spend some time apart
As important as it is to carve out time to spend together, it’s also important to make sure you’re spending some time apart.
Take a bath, go for solo walks, watch tv in separate rooms, do things that fill your cup.
If you’re both working from home, try working from separate rooms, to avoid distraction and to trick your mind into thinking you’re leaving your spouse to “go” to work.
Spending whole days and nights apart will make coming back together so sweet!
5. Express gratitude
Express gratitude as often as possible if you are aiming to build marital happiness alongside effective communication skills
This is a simple one, but essential. It helps put things in perspective and is proven to calm anxiety.
Thank your partner for all they do, then spend time (every day or every week), talking through what you’re grateful for – your safety, your home, your family, your pets, etc.
6. Speak each other’s love languages
Love languages tell us the way in which we prefer love to be expressed to us.
If you haven’t already, learn your spouse’s primary love language and make sure you are speaking it during this time.
This will help you connect more deeply and avoid potential frustrations/conflicts that can come from misalignment in a couple’s love language.
A better understanding and effective communication in a relationship.
7. Do not shame or guilt
These are anxiety-inducing times and everyone is coping differently.
Be very conscious not to shame or guilt your partner as they cope.
If they’re ordering food three times a week, if they’re not working out as much as they used to, if they’re watching another episode of reality tv, that’s ok.
Keep checking in with them to see if there’s anything you can do for help.
If your spouse expresses fears or anxieties, listen, don’t diminish those feelings.
8. Get some fresh air together
Go for a socially distanced walk, go to a park, go for a long nature drive together.
9. Have sounding boards outside your marriage
For effective communication in a relationship, it’s important to acknowledge that there are some things you shouldn’t talk to your partner about (or, shouldn’t keep talking to your spouse about).
Make sure you have people outside your marriage that you can vent to and talk about your weird obsession with.
Plus, virtually connecting with friends and family can boost your mood!
10. Forgive quickly, assume good intent
We’re all doing our best to maintain and strengthen effective communication with our partner, but we’re all feeling a bit sensitive right now.
So if your partner doesn’t have the perfect response or did something that made you upset, communicate why you reacted to it, and then forgive as quickly as possible.
Always assume that your spouse didn’t intend to impact you in that way, feel your feelings, then hug it out and move on.
After a fight, try to do something joyful and silly to connect with your partner and to launch you into a happier place.
We hope these tips on building effective communication, tools to learn effective communication techniques, and tactics are helpful.
It won’t happen overnight, but by cultivating and nurturing the marriage communication skills, you and your spouse can effectively communicate during these unbelievably tough times.
We wish you a happy, healthy marriage that has effective communication, love and honesty as the relationship pivots !
And when all else fails, remember to take it one day at a time and breathe.
Want to have a happier, healthier marriage?
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.