“Conscious uncoupling”, a descriptive term for a mindful ending where two people try not to rip one another to shreds out of hurt and disappointment. Perhaps “conscious coupling” will prevent the need for untangling ourselves, separating our lives. It certainly seems worth the effort when I consider the life we built, the love we share, and the amount of money we do not owe.
We are consciously committing to the following habits, because neither of us is going anywhere so we may as well be happy.
- Hugging every day for at least 30 seconds. Hugging bonds us, releases stress, and cultivates trust. A good long hug wipes other thoughts away and makes us conscious in the moment.
- Habitually expressing gratitude prevents us from falling into a habit of taking each other for granted. Every one likes to feel appreciated and partners contribute to our happiness in dozens of ways.
- Doing kind and thoughtful things for one another. A phone call, a message, flowers, a back rub, a listening ear, a favorite dinner, a bubble bath, lit candles, there are a million ways to say “I love you”.
- Holding hands. It tells the world “we’re together” and strengthens our bond.
- Playing board games. We talk when we play a board game, we compete, we let someone else get ahead for the sake of keeping the game going. Board games are sexy.
- And we cannot forget about sex. Sex changed as we changed, and is not the star of the show as it was when we first fell in love. What counts is connection. If I am in pain or exhausted, that may consist of our feet touching under the covers. If nurtured, intimacy grows, eclipses good sex, and expands our comfort zone with that one, and only that one, lover.