When was the last time you really felt connected with your partner? You know, that feeling that you share something special between the two of you? How about the last time you and your partner had a really good time together, just the two of you?
Despite the fact that you do share children, a home, and a host of responsibilities with your partner, jam-packed schedules can make you feel as though you are two ships passing in the night.
Having fun together and bonding over shared experience are key ingredients in any relationship. One of the best ways to reconnect with your partner is to learn something new together. The fact that you are both in foreign territory can create an instant bond, and an even playing field.
Unlike a halfhearted attempt to “go to the movies sometime,” taking a class together also requires a bit of planning, and in most cases a little cash, so you are more likely to follow through and get out together.
Here are nine tips to help you and your partner rediscover each other through taking classes:
1.Do Something He/She Wants to Do
If you really want to get your partner excited about the idea of learning something new together, start with a class that he or she would like to do. It shows you recognize and care about your partner’s interests. Besides, if your guy or gal is reluctant to take a class to begin with, there is no way you’re getting them to an event centered on something they have no interest in.
2.Do Something Brand New To Both of You
Learning something totally foreign to both of you is like entering uncharted waters together. In other words, it’s an adventure, which almost always leads to fun, laughter, and romance.
Choosing a class in which you will both be novices also means you will naturally rely on each other to figure things out. Best yet, once you learn it you will get to be “experts” together; you will have tons to talk about with each other, your kids, and in your social circle.
3.Start Out Small
Don’t get bogged down in the commitment of a class that takes place over many weeks, or has multiple class times during the week. If you have children, that could be an almost impossible undertaking, and may also be expensive.
Instead, choose an evening class, such as a wine seminar or class in Tuscan cooking with a meal included. Or, check out Saturday half-day classes at your local community college or continuing education center, where you can find everything from how to feng shui your home to playing the stock market.
Remember to check out active classes, such as daylong rock climbing lessons, or down hill ski classes followed by a day on the slopes.
4.Schedule a Regular Babysitter
Even if you are taking one-day-only classes, schedule a babysitter on an ongoing basis, so that you can continue to have adventures with your partner. Make a commitment to take two classes a month, and set firm dates with your babysitter.
5.Bond if it’s Bad
If you happen to take a class that is just plain bad, let go and have fun with it. A less-than-satisfactory class can be just as fun as one that really excites you. It’s a bit giggling and passing notes to your crush during a boring lecture. Remember, you are taking the class to be together, so turn the bad class into prime bonding and you’ll laugh about it together for years to come.
6.Don’t Expect Too Much From Your Partner or Yourself
If your partner just isn’t any good at cake decorating or water skiing, don’t sweat it. Abstain from judgment and focus on having a good time. Likewise, don’t get too upset if you don’t make it all the way to the top of the mountain. The important thing is you are doing something together.
7.Leave Your Ego at the Door
Competing with your partner is a sure way to kill all the romance. Who cares if he chops carrots faster than you, or if she picked up the hula on the first try? Again, the goal here is to connect with each other, smile a lot, laugh even more, and fill up that well of common experience.
If your partner is stuck in one quilting class after another, he or she is bound to abandon the idea of taking classes with you. A system of trading off who gets to choose the next class is a great way to make sure both of you are totally in to the experience at least half of the time.
9.Document Your Fun
Think about the last photo you have of you and your partner having a good time together. If the most recent evidence of your romance is ten years old, it’s time to make new memories and document them. Take a camera along to your classes; pick up brochures from the class, and save the instruction sheets and other souvenirs from the experience. Use them to make a fun scrapbook that is just about you and your partner. It’s a great way to honor your new commitment to each other.
Taking classes can also lead to an entirely new direction for your and your partner. Perhaps in your exploration of home restoration and gourmet cooking, you would decide to open up a bed and breakfast. Or, maybe through your joint interest in abseiling, you might decide to purchase a summer home in Florida so you can abseil every day!
Get started today. Pick a class, any class, and sign up. Before you know it, you and your partner will be exchanging those knowing glances, spontaneous kisses, and phone calls again. Now doesn’t that sound like fun?
Copyright (c) 2007 Pat Brill