Happy Friday! This week’s #REALationshipGoals post is pretty awesome because it’s getting into the reason why we started this series. Mae, Lauren, and I were a couple of girls who wanted to know what other challenges and strengths we each had in our relationships. After looking through our reader survey a few months ago we found this question:
“After being together for so many years, do you ever have moments where you feel like you have nothing to talk about because you already know pretty much everything about each other?”
Ah, we’ve all been there – we are pretty much all there right now. Passion, love, intimacy and communication are such important pillars in a relationship and as time goes on you have to make sure it doesn’t fizzle. Today on my blog, we are sharing our tips on open communication. After you are done here, head over to Mae’s blog for some sexy tips and check out Fashionably Lo for keeping the “fun” going!
Sahir and I are both incredibly busy during the work days, so communication is terse and usually set to the essentials. “Did you return this package?” or “What do you want for dinner?” so by the time we get home, we really try to make time for one another. I’m happy to say there has never been a time where we have gone days (or hours) without saying anything to one another – but that’s not always easy. When we are busy at work we also don’t get to catch up on social media or what’s happening in the world. I am not a fan of being out at restaurants and being on our phones. It’s totally normal and it happens, but we try to make a conscious effort to put our phones away when we are spending time with each other – especially during meals. But TV time? Fair game. He is usually catching up on sports or friends while I am blogging. Sitting together while doing our own things is totally acceptable, but when we are out on a date – conversation first.
My advice is to find topics that you can educate each other one on. Sahir and I developed a game a few years back where we quiz each other on things that happen in current events. I’ll ask if he knows what happened with the latest political appointment to the cabinet and he will ask me if I know which teams are slated to get the #1 pick for March Madness. It’s usually sports vs. everything else. #AlwaysMakingEachOtherBetter
We usually have no shortage of things to talk about, but we are definitely not strangers to silence. Sometimes we sit in the same room for forever and don’t say a word. That being said, we usually have plenty to say. We text throughout the day but usually try to reserve a story or two to share when we are together. Those little stories usually sprout into larger conversations. Nick and I are both very introspective people and we spend a lot of time thinking. We are also both introverts and can come off as quiet and shy to others. Around each other, though, we usually can’t shut up. Because of this, we spend a lot of time unpacking our thoughts, ideas, and concepts together. We read books together or listen to podcasts then discuss them almost daily. We also read on our own time and share links to articles, quotes, and videos with each other than discuss them later. We each tend to serve as a sort of sounding board for the other. However, there are plenty of days when I don’t have much to say and I just listen to Nick and react to him. Other days it’s the opposite. Still other days, we just don’t feel like talking at all. And that’s equally important. Silence isn’t a bad word, even though it may sometimes feel that way. The real art of communication (at least for us) is in being sensitive enough to one another to know the right time to speak, the right time to listen, and the right time to just be silent.
That hasn’t always been easy, though. I’m a listener at heart and I used to be pushy with Nick sometimes. I always wanted him to talk about his day. I eventually realized, however, that the more I pushed the less likely he was to open up. I learned over time to wait for him to be ready to speak. From there, I could ask follow-up questions and conversation would ensue.
I know I can’t be the only one who goes out to dinner with bae and sits there in silence for like 30 minutes. It’s not because we’re arguing. It’s not because we don’t like each other. It’s just that we know literally everything about the other person. We text throughout the day. We spend most nights together. Sometimes it can be hard to find things to talk about at all times. And that’s okay! We don’t have to always be in deep conversation. But whenever I start to feel like maybe a little too much time has passed between meaningful conversation, I like to think of random topics to start things up again. Whether it’s talking to each other about relevant news or silly pop culture references or trying to brainstorm new ideas for products we wish we could invent, sometimes it’s fun to just talk about things outside of work or “real life”. It’s also important to note that sometimes that silence is just fine. I’ve stopped letting a silent 30-minute window every few days isn’t really a big deal. There is nothing wrong with sitting with each other and both being on your phone. If you start to notice that you just have nothing at all to talk about, consider trying new things together to create those new areas of interest!
Catch up on all things #REALationshipGoals here! As always, if you have any topic suggestions be sure to send them my way!