Welcome back! Today I want us to look at the benefit of scheduled activities as a couple and in particular, what we call: Couple Council.
You might have heard that it is suggested to plan regular activities as a couple. Mainly when the honeymoon phase is over and that the relationship needs more consciousness to stay positive, energising and joyful. The usual example is a weekly or monthly date. But I would add to that a two weeks long trip together once a year (no kids, no friends!) and eventually your sexy time too! The benefit of scheduling time for an activity is that it becomes a priority. The small action of scheduling activities, if followed up on, is a game changer. It puts your priority straight and is feeding a crucial foundation of your relationship: commitment.
Like all couples, we discuss all things of life: we plan holidays, we book date nights, we review our finances and investments, or we dream about what we will do in the coming years. We used to talk about such topics when they come up. At times, forgetting about it for months until the idea came up again. While we still do that often, we also keep track in a Trello board on most of the critical topics and meet once a week to discuss what is on the agenda (i.e., Trello) for about an hour. That meeting is what we call our Coue Council!
Let’s have a look at it!
The Couple Council in a Nutshell!
The Couple Council is a Monday night commitment we made roughly a year ago. It had various forms, and it evolved slowly over-time. Sometimes in a Starbucks or sometimes at home. We use to have agenda and minutes like in a meeting you would have at work. Over time, we were annoyed by the amount of maintenance it created and found that having a Trello Board make things a lot simpler, faster and smoother.
The Couple Council came for us as a way to meet with an intention to discuss what matters to us as individuals and as a couple. It is creating a priority of building our future, showing commitment to each other and help us taking steps on a weekly basis towards where we want to be.
It usually lasts an hour, but it doesn’t have too. It depends on the topics of the week, and it’s okay to be flexible. Over the last year, we did it more or less 80% of the time. We are flexible about moving it around if one of us is travelling or if we have a social event on a Monday.
The agenda is in two parts: the follow-ups from last week and we bring any points we would like to discuss. The topics we are bringing could be something we need to do together or something important in one’s life (some examples later!). For the technical side of things, we now use Trello: we use a three columns system: New PointsActions, In Progress and Accomplished Points/Actions. We use the Trello functionnality “Add a Member” to each item, so we know who has ownership of what. The deadline by default is to make some progress before we meet again the week after. When we start working on it, we move the point to the In Progress Column. If you aren’t familiar with Trello, just imagine a fancy Table with three columns! 🙂
That’s about it for how we run it! It can be modified to change the purpose or the format based on what you need in your couple. We made it work for us and I am sure you can make it work for you! I have some questions for you:
- What do you think about this?
- Do you want to implement it?
- Would your partner be open to such an idea?
A sneak peek!
While I am there, I want to share with you some topics we discussed recently in our weekly Couple Council (CC).
I’ll go back in time a bit. Mid-January, we went for a honeymoon in Costa Rica, so we used our weekly CC for the planning part. My wife focused on the places we will go to as she could get recommendations from friends. I focused on making sure we had the bus, planes, hotels, hostels or Airbnbs figured out for the right nights in the right cities. These were distributed during the CC, and then we would work on it throughout the week and share updates during the next CC.
Lately, we have been putting off CC for two weeks, and we accumulated talking points for a while. It happens at times, and the next best step is doing it next Monday! Right now in our Trello, you would find items about:
- Health: Find a holistic doctor, Try acupuncture, Find and Do Total Bloodwork
- Watch: The Shift (following up after watching Heal a few weeks ago)
- Do our Vision Board: we have been postponing that one for long, but we plan it for our two years anniversary!
- Travels and Events Plan 2018: All the travels and significant events for 2018 in a timeline (work, personal, self-development, friends visiting etc.)
- Weekly Schedule Together: Planning when we have a lot of time together but also making sure we have time for our things and we re-balance that as often as we feel our couple need it
And voilà! I hope you enjoyed today’s insight and that you might consider scheduling activities with your partner! And why not a Couple Council?!