‘Tis the season to be jolly, but we understand that not everything about the holiday season will be jolly. Let’s be real. The holiday season can be stressful. Sixty-two percent of adults have a hard time feeling jolly as the result of the elevated stress they feel during the holiday season. Holiday shopping, decorating, cooking, and parties with friends and family can elevate our stress levels and have us feeling disconnected from our partner over the holidays.
It is easy to put your relationship on the back burner during the holidays; however, the Gottman Institute explains when partners do small, everyday gestures of kindness for each other and engage with positive intention and presence, they grow their emotional bank account. Carving out time with your partner leads to a healthier and happier relationship.
Are you looking for ways to reconnect with your partner over the holidays? Here are four ways that will help you to reconnect with your partner and lower holiday stress.
Role-playing is all about being someone else for a little bit. Leave your worries outside of the bedroom and allow yourself to have fun and be creative. Holiday-themed role-playing, anyone? Naughty Santa and Mrs. Claus? A naughty elf who got caught off the shelf? The possibilities are endless when it comes to role-playing.
Remember, don’t overthink. Role-playing can be as simple as wearing costumes or be as elaborate as having a script with props and the like. Either way, the point of role-playing is to escape reality and forget about your stressors. And have fun! Role-playing is a sexy game for you and your significant other to let loose and get close.
2. Sexy gifts
Gift-giving is a holiday tradition, so why not put a naughty spin on things? Sexy gifts can help spice up your holiday season and your relationship. Gifting your partner something on the sexier side, like sexy lingerie, a sexy game, or sex toys (don’t forget to include a lubricant) will remind them how much you want them under the mistletoe this year.
3. Bring on the romance
Valentine’s Day is not the only time of the year to boost the romance in your relationship. Picture this: you have the Christmas lights on, it’s snowing outside, the fireplace is going, and you are cuddling with your significant other. Talk about romantic. Take a day off from the holiday planning to focus on your relationship. Couples who devote time to one another at least once a week are more likely to have high-quality relationships and less likely to divorce .
4. Embrace the old traditions, but create new ones
The holidays are about family traditions, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t make new ones. Consider creating new traditions with your significant other that can become unique to your relationship.
Creating new traditions helps build your family identity and brings you and your partner closer. Maybe you and your partner enjoy cooking? Whip up a holiday-themed meal for two. Perhaps a weekend getaway every December works for your relationship? Whatever you decide, your holiday season will be more memorable.
Your mental health matters. A Healthline survey looked at holiday stress and found that over 60% of all respondents felt some stress during the holiday season, and women are most impacted. Taking time for your partner is important but remember to take time for yourself first. Find the time today to recharge your batteries. Even if you only have 10 minutes, having ‘’me time” leads to lower stress levels, increases productivity, and will help you feel more present in your relationship.
Stress can have long-lasting effects, and reducing your stress levels is crucial. Recognizing what triggers your stress during the holiday season prepares you to handle the stress better so you can appreciate all the joys the holiday season brings.
- W. Bradford Wilcox, When Marriage Disappears: The New Middle America (Charlottesville, VA: National Marriage Project/Institute for American Values, 2010).