5 Tips for Couples Navigating Quarantine Together

May 22, 2020

a couple sitting on a sofa with cat and dog

Being in a relationship can be tricky and being in Quarantine can be tricky… that means navigating the two together can have the potential to be a bit rocky or confusing. We’re experiencing something most of us have never had to experience before: working from home together, limited time with friends and family, and in general, spending 24/7 with just ONE other human being for the most part. That’s why we’ve gathered some information from some real-life couples as well as some certified therapists who can help us better manage our relationships now and ultimately, make them better in the long run.


1. Make Time for Alone Time


Whether you are an introvert, extrovert, or prefer to not identify, Rachel Wright, certified LMFT, reminds us that, “Alone time every day is crucial”. There is something about stepping away from your current situation and hitting the pause button for just a moment that automatically forces us to gain a new perception and come back to our reality lighter and more flexible than before. Alone time can be as simple as reading a book, taking a nap, walking around the block, and relaxing in silence.


2. Learn How to Communicate Better


It is impossible to be the best version of ourselves all day, 365 days a year. And it’s even harder to do so when there is another person in the same room as you for all of those days to play witness. At any moment you could get overly angry at the computer for not working quickly enough or at the Britta for not keeping your water as cold as you like it. In these not-so-proud moments of emotion and in those awkward moments of silence where both of you are not exactly sure what’s going on, that’s your cue it’s time to communicate better. Take an online class together or by yourself. Try Masterclass, Skillshare, or even Youtube. Is there a more optimal time to get better at something that could elevate your relationship than during Quarantine?


3. Create a New Routine


A new routine? Gross, why would I want to do that? Well, for most of us, our routines have changed significantly – from everything including the time we wake up to the time we eat dinner. Things in our external worlds have changed and that means our internal worlds have changed too, even if some of it is subconscious. Your new routine can include the time you wake up, 15 minutes of moving your body, the time alone we mentioned above, work, and something to incorporate with your partner like cooking or playing a game together. Try this new routine out for one week and see if you notice any benefits. Remove what didn’t work for you and keep what did.


4. Incorporate Activities Other Than Netflix into Your Days


Just when we thought it was difficult to stay away from Netflix already, they give us Quarantine. Quarantine has made it 10x easier to keep a close eye on our favorite shows, literally. Unfortunately, we really should be doing other things throughout the day too – I know, it’s cruel. Rachel Sussman from Independent recommends activities using your hands such as art, crafting, or cooking to keep your mind engaged and your hands moving. It gives us something new to talk about with our partner as well as something to look forward to besides vegging.


5. Have Empathy for Each Other


One of the biggest issues Sussman sees in couples is a lack of empathy towards one another. It’s easy to build resentment, but it takes courage to try to actually relate to a person we think we already know everything about. Try to listen and learn from a situation they may be going through, even if it’s hard to see them be vulnerable. One of the best and simplest ways to connect and show appreciation for your partner is to acknowledge their strengths.