Don't get us wrong - we're all for the awesomeness of a regular date night. Still, there are a few bonding activities for couples that go way beyond Netflix, a movie theater, or even your favorite ramen place. With a few intentional choices, you can make your bond even stronger. Even better, most of these ideas are super easy to incorporate in your regular routine.
Give Five Minutes of Touch
Doesn't sound like much, does it? But if you're like most of us, it's easy to get wrapped up in the busy moments of work and family and kind of forget to touch your special someone enough. Set aside five minutes for each of you when you won't be interrupted (or if you have littles, won't be interrupted much). Take that time to exchange shoulder massages, back rubs, or any other type of touch you like. Even if you just hold hands, you may find it can help build your relationship.
Share One Triumph or Tribulation
Life is full of ups and downs - often within a single day. Take a minute to think about what happened to you today and share it with one another. If something was really hard, as some days super are, let your partner help you process it. If you got a great review at work or had something amazing happen, celebrate it with your person.
Set Aside Some Story Time
Reading out loud together is a great bonding activity for couples. Not only do you get to share your favorite books with your favorite person, you also get to be physically close. Sit near each other and read anything you think you'll both love - from Harry Potter to an Emily Dickinson poem. It's an easy way to wind down after a long day and feel closer at the same time.
Not into the same books? Tell each other stories from your lives. Share your first memory, the dream you had last night, your most embarrassing moment, or anything else.
Get Playful Together
Remember how fun it was to play as a kid? You can capture that joy with your partner too. One of the best relationship building activities is to find something you both love doing just for fun and do it together. We're talking tennis, board games, croquet, cards, or basically any game you both like. Keep competition to a minimum and just have a wonderful time.
Tackle a Task as a Couple
Whether you need to build a new deck or just do the dishes from dinner, you can work on it together. Taking something on as a team and triumphing over it lets you feel successful as a couple (and even doing the dishes can feel like a major win after a busy day). What's more, doing a chore or project together as a couple can also help you show each other you have support.
Find a Silent Place
Blanket fort, anyone? A few minutes of silence together or just whispered conversation can go a long way. Head out to your backyard while the kids are playing a game or napping. Take a few moments in your bedroom with the door closed. Basically, go anywhere where you don't have to talk or adult and just be. This is all about mindfulness and being in the moment together.
Make any ordinary space special by lighting a few candles or putting on some peaceful music.
Trade Regular Thank You Notes
Once a week or once a month, write a quick thank you note to your partner. You can thank them for who they are, how they've changed your life, or something they've done this week to help. Be specific and personal. Exchange your notes and watch their face light up. Don't be surprised if these notes get saved forever.
Listen to Music in the Dark
There's just something about listening to music in the dark that makes you feel everything just a little bit more. Once in a while, turn off all the lights and share a pair of earbuds to listen to a song or two. Bonus points if you can put it on the stereo and snuggle while you listen.
If you don't like the same music, there's nothing wrong with sitting together in silence in the dark. You could also put on a meditation soundtrack or white noise.
Laugh Out Loud
One of the things that can really bond couples is their shared humor. What do you both find funny? Whether it's stand-up or Shakespeare, watch or read it together. Sharing laughter is a great bonding exercise for couples, especially when you're dealing with the stress of everyday life. Give yourself a few minutes together to watch something funny.
Get Out Your Photo Album
If you've been together for a while, chances are you have some pictures. Grab your phone or, if you're old school like some of us, your real photo album. Set some time aside to go through your photos and remember all the good times you've had together. This shared history is a huge relationship builder, so let yourselves embrace it.
Text to Say Hi Throughout the Day
Knowing your person thinks of you during the day can make a big difference in how you feel about your relationship. Every time your partner crosses your mind, send them a quick text. It doesn't have to be anything fancy - just let them know they're on your mind.
Get in a Workout Together
Working out together is a great way to strengthen your bond as a couple. This is especially true if you chose an activity you both like or just go for a walk or hike together. If you're not working out too hard, you can chat while you're doing it too. It's an awesome way to reconnect.
Bonding Activities for Couples Are About Quality Time
There are so many incredible bonding activities for couples, but ultimately, they are all about quality time. Carve out a few minutes in your busy schedules to prioritize your relationship. What you do isn't as important as just making the time for each other.