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How to Have Fun and Grow Closer on Your Couples Vacation

 

Vacations are great. They help us relax, de-stress, engage in pleasurable activities and enjoy each other.   Studies show that vacations are generally good for your health and wellbeing. Going on vacation with your significant other can indeed help you get to know each other better, make new joint memories, and try new things together – all beneficial for couplehood.

1.  Let go of expectations, especially when it comes to feelings.

When you expect you or your partner to feel a certain way (overjoyed, romantic, relaxed, elated) on that planned sunset boat ride or mountain summit, you might be disappointed.  She might get mildly seasick and feel too hot to enjoy the boat, or he might be exhausted and apprehensive thinking about hiking down the mountain. So instead of expecting to have specific emotions or trying to control them, focus on what you can control: your actions.

2.  Acknowledge your differences intolerance of uncertainty and plan accordingly.

This is one of the most common things that trip couples up.  One of you might be a spontaneous daredevil who is eager to explore all that is unknown, uncertain, and unpredictable.  And the other might get anxious at the mere thought of anything unplanned, uncertain or unpredictable. You are both likely somewhere on the continuum between these two extremes. Talk about this honestly before your vacation, figure out what you can compromise on, and leave the rest for some scheduled solo time or another vacation.

3.  Relax and prioritize sleep.

Both the quantity and quality of sleep can predict more couple conflict the next day.  And more conflict tends to lead to worse sleep, creating a vicious circle. So, make sure that both of you are getting enough sleep on vacation.  Moreover, create good conditions for healthy slumber: Sleep in a cool, dark, and quiet space; moderate your drinking; choose comfortable bedding.

4.  Detach from work and unplug.

Try to unplug from screens and electronic devices as much as possible.  Even five days off of social media has been shown to reduce stress. Using your vacation as a tech or social media detox period can dramatically reduce negative effects. You will be surprised how much more you and your partner will enjoy your vacation if you just put your phones on airplane mode, even for a couple of hours at a time.

5.  Learn something new together.

If possible, use vacation as an opportunity to try to learn something new as a couple. The effect is especially strong for couples who have been together for a long time.  This does not mean that you have to try tandem bungee jumping next time you take off for vacation. A cooking class or an art class would be fun.

Dr. April Brown has a great opportunity for couples to receive one on one counseling, and a vacation in a luxury suite, with fun excursions though Vacation Counseling Retreat. For more information, please check out https://www.vacationcounseling.com/ application available now for May 2020!

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