On this 23rd day of September, the action point for the 30-Day Challenge is for me to commit to cultivating a stress-reducing relationship. As I've been going through changes, transition and a new season lately, I realised that D is really great at helping me reduce stress, and I am so thankful for that!
The followings are some of the considerations that I believe will help deal with stress and change, as l cultivate a stress-reducing relationship:
- Habits - make sure that we don't have domestic habits which cause stress for the other, for example being untidy, being late, leaving things unfinished, taking too long.
- Emotional relief valves - it's important to not hold onto, deny or minimise feelings of frustration, irritation, anger or stress, as these emotions can cause stress. Take time out to catch up and encourage each other to talk about worries or fears that are bothering us.
- Reducing uncertainty - Uncertainty and a loss of control are stress-inducing conditions. It's a good idea to have regular planning meetings about tasks to be done, what is coming up in our individual lives, how we want to spend the weekend, holidays etc.
- Private time & space - having private time and space both as individuals and as a couple are enormous, even if it is for a short period. It allows for reflection, for rest, and restores energy.
- Sensitivity to each other's load - there are times when one or both of us is carrying an especially heavy load - life crisis, work peaks, financial concern. We lift each other's load by offering to take a greater share of domestic duties and going easy on demands for time and attention.
- Health - we can make things easier for each other by encouraging or joining in regularly exercise, eating balanced meals together etc.
- Communication - feelings, preferences, wants need to be expressed in words, actions or gestures. Effective communication involves awareness, attitudes and commitment.