But how do you know you’re in flow with your partner, versus settling for what you know, leaving you unconsciously asleep at the wheel?
I think it’s all about the day-to-day little things, versus grandiose words and gestures, that make you feel in true alignment with your partner.
Here are 10 ways to tell:
1. You start your day with a good morning kiss: No matter how stressed or distracted one or both of you are, you don’t take for granted that you wake up to your partner and want to genuinely acknowledge them. Don’t live together? You could send them a “Good morning, thinking of you, have a great day” text instead.
2. There’s a balance of responsibilities: Maybe you make more money so you pay for more things like dinners and travel, but your partner does the cleaning and helps you in other ways, like running errands, walking the dog more, and cooking. Whatever the division of responsibilities, you both feel like you’re on an even playing field.
3. There’s respect for each other’s lives outside the relationship: Your partner has friends, hobbies, and a job that are separate from you, and vice-versa. The need to nurture and nourish yourselves as individuals is wholly respected and encouraged by you both. There’s a healthy balance there, where neither person feels slighted or less prioritized.
4. You both feel appreciated and valued as a partner: You never have to guess how they feel about you. You say, “I love you” to each other on the reg, but not just when you’re getting off the phone or signing off on a text exchange. I melt every time I’m just being me, telling a story, and out of nowhere my partner looks at me adoringly and says, “I love you.” The words never get old when they’re heartfelt, and especially when they’re least expected.
5. You don’t even have to say what’s bothering you, and they let you know they’re there with a squeeze of your hand or some other small but meaningful gesture. It’s not always about saying the right thing! Energetically sensing each other’s moods and allowing space for them while making it clear you’re still there is such a beautiful way to know you’re in flow in your partnership.
6. You’re regularly having sex. Physical intimacy is important on so many levels for the individual and the couple! To prioritize connecting with each other on this level invites you both to be your most raw, vulnerable selves, and keeps the passion and chemistry ignited between you as time goes on.
7. You’re on the same page and timeline about your life plan as a couple. No one’s dragging the other person along or impatiently waiting to advance the relationship to the next level, whether it’s about moving in together, getting engaged, or having kids.
8. You address the hard conversations with love. Hard conversations are tough—even for the strongest couples—but oh-so necessary. It’s uncomfortable to express disappointment or ask your partner to see something your way, out of fear that they may not … But you know you’re in the flow when you come out of those challenging exchanges stronger, more aware, and most importantly, more connected to each other.
9. You make each other laugh. Humor should officially be added to the five love languages, don’t you think?! If you and your partner are regularly laughing together, that’s a great way to know you’re in the flow. You enjoy the same kind of comedy, you laugh at each other’s expense in a safe and light-hearted manner, and you get a kick out of what the two of you find funny while others may not!
10. You’re just happy to be around each other doing nothing. You enjoy each other’s presence. It gives you comfort, even if someone isn’t in the greatest mood or you’re both tired and not feeling that chatty. You’d choose each other’s company any day over your own or someone else’s.
Of course, these 10 signs aren’t going to be consistent 100% of the time. I’m in the relationship of my dreams, but there are moments when we are not in flow, which I believe is par for the course in all relationships. But overall, if you can implement these relatively small yet significant approaches to your relationship more regularly, you and your partner will be in excellent shape!