10. Break Personal Habits That Aren’t Serving You
Reflect on your habits and behaviors to see if there’s anything that’s harmful to your relationship. “The new year is a great time to do a personal inventory,” Dr. Nickerson says.
Maybe you’re a little too emotionally reactive when you hear something you don’t like, or maybe you tend to get aggressive during fights. Once you pinpoint the specific ways that you could improve, keep it in mind, and make a point to work on it. You can even let your partner know that you’re taking responsibility and looking to change.
11. Find Something Fun To Do Together
Creating a fresh start isn’t only about working on issues or breaking habits — it can be fun, too. “If your relationship feels a little blah, try to curate more fun moments for the two of you,” Dr. Nickerson says.
Play games, flirt with each other, go on an adventure, or try something new to decrease stress. Doing something at the beginning of the year that makes you laugh and smile will set a good tone for the year ahead.
12. Talk About Sex
Use the new year to check in with your partner about how they’re feeling about your sex life. “Sexual communication has always been a strong predictor of sexual relationship quality,” Dr. Nicole Prause, Ph.D, founder of Liberos, a sexual biotechnology company, tells Bustle.
According to Prause, many people will hold off on having a sex talk because they don’t want to be judged or brushed off. But if you do it at the beginning of the year as part of your discussion on the goals you want to accomplish, you can have a productive conversation about it.
13. Come Up With New Relationship Rituals For 2020
Relationship rituals are small intentional things that you do each day to keep your connection alive, like having breakfast together every morning or giving each other a kiss before you leave for work. As Amy Hartle, relationship and marriage expert, tells Bustle, “These little gestures are small, but they add up to a lifetime of love.”
If you already have your routine all set, find little ways to shake it up a bit. Instead of texting each other during lunch breaks, try Facetiming during lunch every Wednesday. You can even create new traditions for holidays, birthdays, and long weekends that bond you and will give you something to look forward to, Margaux Cassuto, relationship expert and matchmaker, tells Bustle.
While you can refresh your relationship at any point in time, New Year’s often feels like the perfect starting point to set intentions and make exciting changes.
Belah Rose, intimacy and marriage coach
Jenny Block, sex and relationship expert
Lana Otoya, dating coach and founder of Millennialships.com
Julie Lauren, author of Oops!: An Insider’s Guide to Dating, Sex, and Relationships in Your 20s
Barbara Morrison, psychotherapist and author of Fully Half Committed
Dr. Kathy Nickerson, licensed psychologist and relationship expert
Dr. Nicole Prause, Ph.D. of Liberos
Sarah Nadler, minister and relationship coach
Amy Hartle, relationship and marriage expert
Margaux Cassuto, relationship expert and matchmaker