A relationship experiment

Not long ago, I posted this question on social media:

For those of you who have a really good relationship with someone: What are the little things that you -- or they -- regularly do that contribute to the quality of the relationship?

The responses were wonderful, and led me to design a 14-day relationship experiment for myself, focusing on small daily actions I can take to create a stronger sense of love and connection between now and Valentine's Day.

Do you want to join me in my experiment?

Despite what the time of year suggests, this doesn't have to be about love and romance. You could focus on a partner, child, parent, coworker, friend, ex, or anyone else you care about. The most important thing is that you want to have a good relationship, and are willing to take the lead.

The experiment is simply to do one of the following activities each day for the next two weeks, and see what happens.

  1. Notice and thank them for a specific thing they did that made your life better

  2. Surprise them with an act of service that you think they will appreciate

  3. Ask a question that you’re genuinely curious about, and pay full attention to their response

  4. Check in with them during the day, just to say I love you or am thinking about you

  5. Surprise them by sending a card in the mail (if you don’t have a stamp handy, you can use SendOutCards)

  6. Buy or prepare a food or drink for them that they especially like

  7. Offer loving touch, like a hug or foot rub or back scratch

  8. Greet them and say goodbye in a way that feels kind and good

  9. Apologize for something you said or did that probably made life harder or less enjoyable for them

  10. Invite them to do something 1:1 with you, just to spend alone time together

  11. Ask for their input or advice on something you’re trying to figure out (or offer them some other way to contribute to you that they would enjoy)

  12. Surprise them with a small gift you think they will like

  13. Tell them a joke (or deliver one in a note or text)

  14. Make a list of reasons you’re glad they are in your life, and share it with them.

If you'd like a printable version with slightly more detailed instructions, you can download that here. If you give this a try, please tell me how it goes!