They focus on grand romantic gestures, elaborate date nights and expensive gifts.
Which is fine at first, but keep that up over a lifetime? It feels more like work than love.
But here’s the good news – making your relationship awesome is much simpler than you think. Because it’s the little, everyday things that have the greatest impact.
Once you get your everyday love habits right, your relationship just works. It actually becomes kinda easy.
So here’s 29 unremarkable (but SUPER powerful) things you can do to make your relationship awesome.
#1 Supermarket Dance Parties
Grocery shopping isn’t exactly our favourite thing to do. But dancing down the isles to crappy supermarket tunes sure does make it a hell of a lot more fun.
Some of our most profound, heart-swelling “I love you” moments have happened in the baked beans isle during a particularly daggy dance routine.
#2 Want The Best For Each Other
“I want you to have what you want” is a guiding principle in our relationship. When we’re faced with a ‘mine vs. yours’ type challenge, we never have to compromise. Ultimately, a win for one is a win for both.
Collaboration baby. Because there’s always a way to make it work for both.
#3 Have A Budget
Money is a huge source of conflict for couples. And for the first few years of our relationship, it was for us too. Until we did two things: #1 – We created a budget. #2 – We delegated the responsibility for said budget to the most financially irresponsible person: Jodie.
It sounds crazy we know, but it forced her to step up in a big way. We haven’t argued about money since.
#4 Say “Thank You”
It doesn’t matter whose turn it is. Or if it’s the 1000th time we’ve done something. These two little words, used every single day, make us feel deeply appreciated and seen.
AND they have the effect of making us want to do MORE for each other. Bonus.
#5 Walk It Out
Getting outside together is our Relationship Reset Button. No matter if we’re tired, stuck in an argument or just want to connect, walking outside never fails to bring in fresh energy.
Hold hands for bonus intimacy points.
#6 Stay Curious
Emotional intimacy is about knowing each other’s internal world. So we make an effort to check in regularly, freely sharing our personal world. We never assume we know exactly what the other person is thinking, and we approach each other with a sense of curiosity and wonder. Our weekly check-ins are the structure around how we do this.
(Want to create more emotional intimacy in your relationship? Book in a time to find out what our Couple’s Coaching program can do for your relationship.)
#7 Cook Dinner Together
This works on two levels. First, we connect. We chat about our day, sort out general life-admin stuff, or talk about what’s going on in our lives. Second, we share the never-ending and often tiresome chore of meal prep. Seriously, this feeding yourself thing is relentless.
But doing it together shares the load and makes it fun.
#8 Make Each Other Laugh
One of our favouritest things on the planet is making each other laugh. We’re always looking for ways to delight, surprise and make each other giggle. Which brings a lot of lightness and play to our relationship, keeping things fresh and energised.
Which brings us to…
#9 Send Memes
For the lols.
#10 Eat Together
Confession: We eat a lot of dinners in bed. We love snuggling in to watch a movie or our latest binge-series of the month. But we eat breakfast together at the table every single day. And usually lunch too.
Why does that matter? Sitting next to each other without screens or distractions always leads to conversation. Some of our best business ideas and personal insights happen over meals at the table.
#11 Time Apart
Running a business from home means we spend a LOT of time together. Yet we also know the importance of having our own separate, individual lives. We make an effort to do things apart each week, and every year we try to have at least one little solo getaway each. Visiting a friend, staying with family or heading off to a retreat.
Not only are we ‘filling up our own cup’, we also get the chance to actually miss each other.
#12 Long Goodbye Kisses
Whenever we leave the house or ‘head off to work’ (literally the next room to jump on a client call), we always give each other a goodbye kiss.
But we make it count. No lame-ass kiss on the cheek. We’re talking a hot, passionate, 100% present and in-the-moment smooch. Quality is everything.
#13 Go On Dates
Yes, it’s Generic Relationship Advice 101. But seriously – never stop dating each other. Ever. As mentioned – you don’t need to get all fancy and elaborate. The key is to make time for quality connection. Our favourite kind of date is simply going out for a coffee.
Don’t let complacency kill your relationship. Put in a little effort, reap the rewards.
#14 Clear The Air
OK. This one may not be so unremarkable – it actually takes a lot of skill and practice. But once you nail it, it becomes habit. Clearing the air means we deal with all the little problems and ‘not-fun frictions’ that pop up in our relationship as they happen. Or as soon as the timing’s right.
It keeps the intimacy window clear and the good vibes flowing.
(Want the step-by-step process we created for this? Check out the Conflict To Connection communication course for couples)
“Remember when….” is a favourite way to start a conversation. We use it to bring up a cherished memory, funny story, or a travel mishap: “Remember when we slept on the street in India because we couldn’t find a hotel?” (For the record, totally Jodie’s fault 😂 ).
It’s a little love and appreciation boost, and a simple way to remind each other just how special this relationship is.
#16 Take Turns Washing Dishes
This may be the most important thing we do to keep the good will flowing between us. (And before you say anything – yes, we have a dishwasher. But there’s always that extra stuff that can’t go in the dishwasher. Sigh…)
Neither of us are huge fans of washing dishes, so we take it in turns so no one gets lumped with it. Relationship satisfaction ensues.
#17 Cuddles Before Sleep
Before putting on our sleeping masks (daggy AF, we know, but it’s a great #sleephack) we always take time for a cuddle. No matter what’s going on, we make sure our day ends with some physical contact… As well as a few loving words and a couple of good night smooches.
#18 Sleep Naked
While we’re on the topic… Unless it’s freezing cold (or it’s period time for Jodie), we sleep naked. It means that any time during the night, a skin-to-skin hug is readily available. And that kind of whole body contact is like hot chocolate for the soul.
We know there’s a lot of housework related tips here, but it’s because this shit matters. Conflict and resentment over housework destroys waaaay too many relationships. So to keep the load feeling light, we delegate our least favourite jobs to each other. Jodie hates touching the bin (‘cause germs) but Reece doesn’t care, so he empties the trash. Reece never wants to mop another floor in his life, whereas Jodie kinda enjoys it.
Wins all ’round.
#20 Say “I Love You”
Even though we know we love each other, we never tire of hearing it. We’ve even turned it into a little game – we try to surprise each other with random, unexpected “I love you’s” throughout the day. It leaves us feeling loved up and safe with each other, which is everything in a relationship.
#21 Physical Touch
We’re constantly touching. We hold hands or link arms when we’re out and about. We snuggle on the couch. And there’s always hugs and kisses throughout the day. We’ll even drive with one hand on each other’s leg.
Physical touch releases all the feel-good chemicals and builds connection, closeness and trust. Use liberally.
#22 Do Fun Stuff
We’re massive ‘bird nerds’ – it’s a hobby we had even before we met. Going on nature walks and looking at birds just lights us up (don’t knock it ‘til you’ve tried it). And doing it together brings even more joy to our relationship.
If you have shared hobbies, do them and do them regularly.
Praise, appreciation, and acknowledgement matter. We often assume our partner knows how wonderful we think they are. But the truth is, we can always hear it more. We make sure we’re constantly saying lovely things to each other, and that the other person knows just how much we appreciate having them in our lives.
#24 Tell Them They’re Hot
Speaking of compliments… Everyone loves hearing they’re attractive. And there’s no one on the planet you want to hear it from more than bae. So don’t hold back on the verbal foreplay. It keeps chemistry alive and actively stokes the fires of desire.
#25 Make Time For Sex
And speaking of chemistry… Ever noticed how you feel like your best self when you’re having frequent sex? (In case you’re wondering, that’s once or twice a week for us). Even when we’re cruising in ‘housemate’ mode, we know exactly what to do to get things started and keep the passion alive.
(If you need a little help with that in your relationship, our complete Reignite Your Love Life course shows you how).
#26 Take Care Of Yourself
Let’s be honest here: it’s way too easy to let things go when you’re in a long-term relationship. But you’ve got to put in at least SOME effort to stay attractive to your partner. We’re not saying shave your legs every day or walk around in a three piece suit – but take pride in how you look. The extra confidence boost will work wonders in your relationship.
#27 Netflix n’ Chill
Who doesn’t love Netflix and actual chill? But to make it special (as opposed to mind-numbing), add some physical contact:
Holding hands, snuggling into each other, and even pausing every now and then for a quick smooch. It’s how we make binge-watching nourishing for our relationship.
#28 Intentional Groping
Loving, supportive touch keeps the love and warmth between us. But it’s a passionate ass grab or a lusty bite on the neck that makes things hot. There’s an art to it, for sure (timing and presence is everything). When done right, it has the power to keep you feeling attracted AND feeling attractive to each other.
#29 YouTube Dance-Off
Now that we think about it, random dance-offs are a key happiness ingredient. You’ve probably worked out by now that we’re not too keen on domestic chores (we’re not the only ones, right?). But cooking while jamming to 80’s tunes always ups the fun factor.
Dancing together brings joy to the mundane. Which is one of the most precious gifts of our relationship. We’re thankful for it every single day.
We did warn you they were unremarkable!
The magic is that these things aren’t magic. Yeah, there’s healthy relationship fundamentals you gotta nail. Like the right attitudes, mindsets and habits for a rockin’ relationship. Or how to turn conflict in to connection. Or how to initiate sex in a way that works.
But when there’s challenges – when there’s feelings of frustration or unexpressed resentments – it’s all too easy to focus only on the problems. Which makes sense – of course you want to fix what’s not working. But there’s also a million-and-one little ways your relationship IS working.
So if you want to make your relationship awesome, find and celebrate all the unremarkable yet unique ways it already is.
Reece Stockhausen & Jodie Milton have made improving people’s lives and relationships both their passion, and their career. With over 25 years experience in the Personal Development industry, and 7 years coaching singles and couples, their no-BS advice has been featured in Bustle, HuffPost, and MindBodyGreen.
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