If you’re the New Years Resolution type, you might be busy getting your resolution ducks in a row. Maybe you’re hoping to read more in 2024 or finally write that novel you’ve been dreaming about. Perhaps you want to get to the gym five days a week or start meditating consistently. But have you considered any New Year’s resolutions for couples?
In 2024, in addition to making promises to yourself, you may also want to consider making them to your partner and your relationship.
The New Year is a great time to review your personal accomplishments and goals. But it’s also the perfect time to take stock of how the past year went for you and your significant other and to see what, if anything, you’d like to change. (And don’t forget to celebrate everything that went right in your relationship, too!)
So what makes for good New Year’s resolutions for couples? You want something that will help you make a shift or improvement in your partnership, but one that is also manageable and realistic.
The best way to make relationship resolutions is to sit down together as a couple and discuss your goals. Use the couple resolutions below for inspiration.
4 New Year’s Resolutions for Couples
1. Power Down, Together
Between work, managing kids or other family obligations and also staying in touch with family and friends, it can be hard to give your partner your undivided attention. Throw your favorite TV series, social media app or smartphone game into the mix and you have even less time to spend with your special someone.
In 2024, commit to taking some time each day to focus only on your partner. Put away all electronic devices and pretend you are back in the 80’s. (Leg warmers optional). This is one of the most impactful (and simple!) New Year’s resolutions for couples that you can make.
Instead of staring at your phones together, practice empathic listening when you talk to each other. Focus on hearing and understanding your partner without being distracted. Avoid formulating your response while they are talking and instead focus on reflecting back what he/she is saying to you to make sure you fully understand their point of view.
2. Employ An Attitude Of Gratitude
All kinds of research shows that being grateful for your partner helps to improve your relationship. But of course, this is sometimes easier said than done. After all, it may be difficult to feel grateful to your spouse for taking out the trash if they walked in dirty shoes across your freshly cleaned floor to get it done.
But if you think about it, having an attitude of gratitude is one of the best New Year’s resolutions for couples. Of course you will feel better about your spouse if you focus on what you appreciate about them. In turn, it will also make them happier with you, and it will make it easier for them to accept constructive criticism if you’ve already showered them with the good stuff. It’s a win-win!
This year, find ways to not just feel more gratitude for your partnership, but to express that gratitude, too. Maybe you make it part of your nightly routine to express gratitude for something that happened during the day. Maybe you keep a gratitude journal together to read and reflect on what your partner shares.
No matter how you use this couples resolution, it’s sure to help you bring a little more contentment into your life.
3. Paint The Town
You didn’t get into a relationship to stare at a TV set together, did you? Try bursting past your comfort zones, at least once a month.
Maybe you want to get out and move with each other by trying a new hiking trail or playing some ping pong? Or, maybe you want to cross some things off your bucket list like zip-lining or white-water rafting? Doing active and adventurous things as a couple will strengthen your bond, and definitely give you something to talk about over dinner!
Doing new things together is one of the best New Year’s resolutions for couples because it not only helps you have fun together (remember fun?!)It also gives you a chance to develop new interests and hobbies that you can enjoy together for years to come.
To make this relationship resolution sustainable, keep things realistic. Don’t commit to a full weekend away every month if you know a date night is much more likely to happen. Don’t stress about trying something overly adventurous if your partner is terrified of heights or gets terrible motion sickness.
Want this resolution to have an even bigger impact? Take turns choosing an activity and planning the date. This will ensure no one is taking on more of the burden of planning outings and helps ensure each person gets to try things they truly enjoy.
One area that often needs help in relationships is the way in which each partner expresses intimacy. What is intimacy? Basically, it’s our feeling of connection and willingness to be vulnerable with our partners.
This type of connection can be sexual, romantic, or purely platonic. The key is finding out which type of intimacy your partner enjoys and being willing to offer more of that. It also means understanding what your own needs are, and expressing those needs clearly.
Improving your intimate connection with your partner takes time, and requires trust, but doing it will give you all the warm fuzzies! That’s why improving intimacy is one of our favorite New Year’s resolutions for couples.
So, which one of these ideas sound doable to you? Could you commit to writing little notes of appreciation for your partner? Or, perhaps take Tai Chi classes with your love? Maybe you want to try some new techniques to spice things up in the bedroom.
Whatever intimacy means to you (both of you!), try to incorporate more of that into your regular lives. This is one example of couple resolutions that you definitely won’t regret!
5. Communication is Key
Resolve to enhance your communication skills as a couple. This includes active listening, expressing your feelings openly, and addressing issues calmly and constructively.
Communication isn’t easy – even for the most healthy relationships. It can be impacted by your attachment style or by past relationship issues. But improving your communication is possible, whether you work on it through couples therapy or on your own.
6. Celebrate Milestones
In 2024, don’t save celebrations for the big moments. Find reasons to celebrate your relationship and your partner regularly throughout the year.
Acknowledge and celebrate important milestones in your relationship, whether it’s bigger days like anniversaries or smaller moments like the day you first met or the day of your first kiss. These occasions are opportunities to reflect on your journey together and reinforce your commitment.
7. Set Shared Goals
Set joint goals and aspirations for the future with your partner this year. Whether it’s saving for a dream vacation, buying a home, or starting a family, working towards common objectives strengthens your bond.
When you work toward a goal together, you may also build new skills, try new things and learn more about each other. This is one of the best New Year’s resolutions for couples who want to achieve big things in 2024 but also want to strengthen their relationship.
8. Try Random Acts of Kindness
Make a resolution to express your love and appreciation through small, unexpected gestures. Whether it’s leaving a sweet note, surprising each other with thoughtful gifts, or taking on a task without being asked, these acts strengthen your connection.
9. Seek Counseling or Do Regular Relationship Check-ins
Consider seeking professional advice or participating in relationship counseling, even if things are going well. Regular check-ins with a therapist can help address any underlying issues, improve communication, and strengthen your relationship foundation.
If you’re not ready for (or able to do) therapy, then make relationship check-ins a regular part of your life as a couple. Set a weekly meeting with your partner to discuss your shared goals, work on conflict resolution and stay connected.
How to Stick to New Year’s Resolutions for Couples
If you’ve ever had a gym membership, you’ve probably noticed how most “New Year’s Resolutioners,” give up by March. Don’t let that be you with your New Year’s resolutions for couples! Make small, manageable goals for the best results.
If you need help finding ways to incorporate these new habits into your relationship – or you want to make a big investment toward improving your partnership – then you might want to add couples therapy to your list of 2024 relationship resolutions.
A couples therapist can help you set – and stick to – relationship goals for the new year, and help you turn your couple resolutions into actual change.
Ready to make your 2024 resolutions? Contact us if you’d like some help getting back on track. We’d love to help you brainstorm new ideas for refreshing your relationship in the New Year!