First order of business, did Sunday’s episode set up some major story lines or what!? How are there only 2 episodes left this season!?
This weekend we had a group of friends over to watch GOT. Once it was done, the theories and speculations started. One part we talked about was the interaction between Sam and Gilly and the implication of the information Gilly was revealing. My first reaction was to yell to my friends that I was right! John Snow being legitimate and the son of Rhaegar and Lyanna’s child and thus rightful heir to the iron throne has been a long running theory of mine! It feels good to be right!
My second reaction though, being the marriage nerd I am, was to see the flaws in Sam’s actions. Gilly was presumably helping him go through records and reading off information. She all but revealed this major piece of information to Sam; however, in his distracted state he all but ignored it. It got me thinking about how there are times when we are present with our partners, but we are not really PRESENT. And in those moments where we are physically present but mentally not, we could be missing out on an opportunity to validate our partner and strengthen our relationship. Or to find out that our best friend is really heir to the Iron Throne.
In our household, if a TV is on, I know what I am telling Greg will not be retained. If I try to tell him about my day, I am pretty sure I would be greeted with a “ uh-huh” or “that’s nice” while he is staring at the TV. Likewise, there are times when he is talking to me about his day and I am looking down at my phone browsing instagram or reading news article. We all have our vices, but it is important to recognize these so we can put them aside and create time for our partner where we are actually communicating with each other and not just talking at each other. Because in reality no news article we are reading or photo we are double tapping is more meaningful or important than the person who is physically in front of you trying to connect.
When we allow distractions to overpower communication in our relationships, then we are well on our way to break apart the relationship that we once worked so hard to build. Mentally checking out is a sure fire way to slowly drift apart from our partner and Greg and I don’t want that to happen to you! So we are sharing our three favorite ways to be present in you marriage, so that you don’t wake up one day and realize the person you once knew so well is practically a stranger to you now.
-When your partner is talking, remove all distractions. Pause the TV, put down your phone, remove what ever your distraction is. Then turn your attention to your partner. When you give them your full attention, you validate them and showing respect.
– Pause the conversation. If your partner is trying to share with you, but you are doing something important, communicate that with them. Let them know that you value what they are saying, but you are in the middle of x, y, or z. Let me get to a stopping point so I can truly be present in this conversation. Word of advice though, if that “important item” is Instagram, a cell phone game, or the like, it’s time to reevaluate priorities.
-Look at your partner when they are talking. When you are looking at them you are less likely to look at the distractions and thus more likely to be mentally present.
The reality is, is that distractions are always going to be around. It becomes our responsibility to fight the distractions we surround ourselves with in order to be mentally present with our partner. Actively commit time to your spouse so you can strengthen the foundation upon which you have built your relationship. Be sure to evaluate if you are mentally present or just physically present with your partner. If it is the latter, reevaluate your actions and priorities in order to help develop a more meaningful relationship.