caring for your relationships

Personal Commitment: Pay Attention to Your Partnerships

caring for your relationshipsWritten by Neen James, motivational speaker and attention expert

I am celebrating my 29th year of marriage. That’s right! When I think about the length of our personal commitment, I reflect on what was required for my husband and I to make it work. It hasn’t been all sunshine and roses and unicorn kisses…. it’s hard work.

It makes me realize that there are three key things necessary for us to be more personally committed to our relationships and partnerships.

3 ways to commit to your relationships

Schedule regular date nights with your significant other. Maybe it’s a virtual champagne date. Or a movie date. Perhaps it’s a walk, a bike ride or even a session with a personal trainer.

Whatever you do, create the opportunity to build excitement for time together. I still date my husband of 29-plus years. (Just so you know, sometimes I don’t feel like it, sometimes I don’t want to make the effort… but I do.)

It’s easy to find other tasks or obligations that might appear to take priotiy. You might be tempted to bail but, as my friend Meg Kristel explains, these dates keep us focused on each other and help us meet each other’s needs.

If you’re like most entrepreneurs, travel and work take up much of your time, so scheduling hours with your loved ones is a practical way to stay connected and in touch.

Watch Neen James speak about more ways to pay attention to your relationships.


When you’re spending time with your partner, put away technology.

Can you leave the phone in your car or handbag? Nothing can spoil the moment like a work-related call, email or text.

Ensure you give undistracted, undivided attention to those you love. You’ll listen more intently and focus on what they have to say. It will help you make a deeper, more genuine connection that is meaningful and lasting.

I totally understand this is hard to do (especially if you have little ones in your life), so remember that just being conscious of it is a great first step.


Never take your partner for granted. Find ways to say thank you regularly.

Maybe she put out the trash? Or helped you with a meal? Did he simply refill your coffee cup? Whatever it may be, say thank you.

A unique way to acknowledge your partner’s efforts is to leave thank you notes. Do you travel for work? Try hiding post-it notes around the house. Is your spouse the one who travels? Why not hide a note in his or her luggage?

I love the book Five Love Languages. My honey and I are complete opposites, but I try to speak in his love language. I don’t always get it right…but I do try.

This article has been adapted and reposted with permission from Neen James. Read more from Neen at

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