Have you ever seen a couple that looks like they really like each other? Not just that they’re committed or solid, but that they really like to hang out with each other? And have you then wondered, just what is their secret? While all people are different, the couple that plays together can seem to just generally be a lot happier.
Playing together through an organized sport is an amazing way to strengthen your bond with your partner. When you play together you are bonding and creating another layer to your relationship. You suddenly have a common goal that you need to work together to achieve. You can practice together and help the other improve. You can be the cheerleader that celebrates when the other triumphs.
Organized play also forces you to make the time with your partner. Life can get pretty busy and there are far too many excuses to not go out. You’re tired, you had to work late, it’s raining. If there is no pressure for you to make the time to be together, too often you can find yourself spending less and less quality time together.
Joining an organized team means that you have entered into a social contract and now you need to show up. Other people are counting on you. As a result, the game night becomes part of your regular schedule and you plan around it. You have now prioritized the play and by extension time with your partner.
Organized play is an important element of a relationship, but so is spontaneous play time. Life can’t be serious all the time. It’s essential that you stop and smell the roses with your partner, or better yet, be a bit silly. In the fall, grab a pile of leaves and start a leaf fight. You’re never too old. In the summer, head to the beach and build a giant sandcastle. Grab a ball or frisbee and play catch in the backyard.
You may think that life is too busy for these moments, but the reality is that these are just moments. Whether it is five or 10 minutes after dinner, or a quick detour after work, free play doesn’t need to take up a lot of time or money.
The trick to free play is recognizing when an opportunity arises. Then, take it right away. You can say that you’ll do something fun tomorrow, but your relationship shouldn’t be put off until the next day. The more you incorporate fun moments into your life, the more natural they will become.
Where to start
If you’re ready to start having more fun with your partner, now’s the time to start. Discuss where your common interests lie and find a group activity to join. At the same time, start finding small moments in the day to engage in a bit of silliness. And don’t be surprised if you find yourself really enjoying your new moments with your partner.