Staying connected to your partner when one or both of you travel often doesn't have to be tough. Check out this video and learn tips for you and your partner.
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Hi. Robyn D'Angelo here, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and Relationship Specialist. Today I'm talking to you about couples who, either one or both of them, tend to travel a lot and it puts a lot of stressors on the relationship. And I want to talk about ways to stay connected even though there's travel involved. So, first of all, I want to talk to the traveling partner, the one who's going on business trips often. There's three things I want you to do. Number one is to prepare for your trips physically and mentally by really being present with your partner and/or your family. So what I encourage are creating what I call technology-free zones or times. So, take three or four days leading up to your planned trip and--no cell phones, no iPads, no video games--and just connect with your family and with your partner. The second thing I want you to do is really appreciate your partner--and that's while you're on your trip and even when you're coming back, which means, "Thank you so much for, you know, holding down the fort." Because it does take a lot of work, even if kids aren't involved, just to make sure that all the things that are part of our everyday lives get done. Because you as a partner contribute a lot to your relationship, so when you're gone, it does put added stress on your partner. So they want to feel appreciated too. The last thing I want you to do is think about rituals you can create upon your return. And I recommend doing this ahead of time and include your family, include your partner and what that can look like is, say you get picked up from the airport after your long trip, you guys already know we're going straight to the movies or we're going to go on a bike ride or maybe that just means we're gonna go find the biggest roller coaster that we can find and just—and mentally and physically shift from work to family or work to your partner. It can be really, really powerful. And now I want to speak to the partner who is not traveling. There's also three things I want you to do. The first one is to plan. And that starts about a week out from whatever your partner's trip is, so that looks like talking to them about, you know, "What do you got going on on your trip? Here's what I've got going on. Are there--if there's kids involved, are there sports? Any other extracurricular activities? Where, when do I take them? Am I in charge of snacks?" Have that conversation, so that you guys are both comfortable while your partner's gone. Second thing I want you to do is reach out while your partner is gone. And that can be as simple as putting a little note in his wallet or, you know, shooting her a little text, "Just thinking about you," or even sending a little snack up to their hotel room just saying, you know, "I appreciate you. I appreciate how hard you work for our relationship and our family." The last thing I want you to do is get excited when they come home. There's no worse feeling than walking in the door after being gone for several days on a work trip that's exhausting and nobody notices or nobody says anything. Make sure to greet your partner with a hug and, I always recommend the six second kiss, and just see what happens. Notice how grateful your partner is and just watch them light up. I hope this has been helpful. Obviously, this is just a tidbit of all the ways that you can connect with your partner, so if you'd like to learn more, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can call me directly 714-390-1652. And I look forward to hearing from you. Talk to you again soon[Transcribed by NMS]