Date Night, for a husband and wife, can descend into a silent, mediocre meal, surrounded by strangers, with nothing better to take home than the bill. Why bother?
Here’s both the Big Picture and the Practical wrapped up in 16 reasons…
Take Back Date Night!
16 reasons a date night is the best choice for you and your spouse:
- Quality Time = Quality Marriage. Dedicated time for a date night with each other starts with a promise of quality time. (one the of the five love languages)
- Be a Keeper. By being proactive, use date night to do something new, and stay connected all through your years of marriage. There’s no reason to fall out of love (or “like”) with each other! Here’s a link to a post about what we’ve seen in couples married many years.
- Stress Away. No… really! Let that stress of daily life GO! Arrange a date night to let go of stress – music, physical activity, laughter, quiet contemplation while viewing a sunset or whatever works to recharge. A date night is the perfect opportunity to de-stress.
- Reach Out and Touch. Physical touch is another of the 5 love languages. It’s priceless. (and not all about sex – but always could include intimacy!) Use date night to escalate the power of touch – from holding hands, to caressing a face, to massaging shoulders, to kissing, to… (Yeah. You get the gist, right?) Play a bit. Only go further one step at a time – use an hour to go no further than touching each other’s hands, and the next hour to only touch above the neck, and the third hour to only use your mouth... elsewhere…(are you smirking yet?)
- Stability in Change. There’s nothing so constant as change. Your life is going to change. Guaranteed. You will change. Your spouse will change. Your kids will change. Everything is always changing. (Tired yet?) Use date night to remain stable, emotionally and relationally, in every change you encounter.
- Challenged to Grow. Date night, done well, forces the two of you to stretch. What do I mean, “done well”? Whenever there’s a opportunity, you have two choices: put in some effort or seek the path of least resistance. Your marriage will grow if you always put in the effort, and date night is a regular way to make sure you push yourself.
- Inject Humor into a Serious Life. Robert and I are pretty serious. We feel we don’t laugh enough, and deliberately seek out opportunities to be around people who find laughter easy. What about you? Are you one of those easy-to-laugh couples? (Hey- want to hang out together?) If you do find it easy to laugh, share your gift with each other, and others! And if you’re like us, then use date night to watch YouTube videos, listen to comedians on Sirius Comedy channel, go to the bookstore and read each other funny comics – or the card store and pick out cards to make each other laugh! (Just read them and carefully put them away – it doesn’t have to cost anything!)
- “Yes, I’d marry YOU again!” Words of Affirmation. Assurance. Use date night to affirm your spouse. (That’s another of the love languages!) After you’ve been married for multiple decades (or even before that) and life becomes either hum-drum, or hectic, it’s deeply valuable to know your spouse admires you… still. Or that your spouse values you… still. Or your spouse would choose you all over again!
- More than. You are more than a man. More than a woman. You are more than a mother. More than a father. More than a grandparent, an employee, a minister, a clerk, a lawyer, a note-taker, a cook, a dog-walker. You are the other half of another person. It’s so easy to lose track of that fact. To mitigate its importance. As spouses, you are One-Flesh. Made for each other. United.
- Asking for Help. It’s not what you might think – I’m not suggesting you use your date night to go to counseling. Rather, have you ever considered a date night focused on prayer? I’m guessing your life isn’t all peaches and roses. I imagine you’re kind of like Rob and me – you’ve got problems. Concerns. Use an hour of date night to pray together – ask for help from the ONE who has all the answers and all the power. Date night doesn’t need to be (only) fun and games. You’ve already taken time away – you’re disconnected from everyday life.,, Date night is also there for the serious stuff. Make date night count – use it for the problem times too!
- Be Unique! Unfortunately, it’s not common to find couples who are deliberate about making time for a date night. It’s rare to find husbands and wives who have a night/morning/afternoon date – alone – every week. Yes, it is sad. Heart-breaking. Especially when you talk with couples who are contemplating divorce and can’t remember the last time they spent quality time together.
Here’s a personal story – we have friends in Dallas – married many decades, who go on a weekly “date night”. Her work even knows not to schedule her on that evening, because it’s “date night”! In her role as the Director of First Impressions at a call center, she shares her view on the value of date-night… and she lives it! Couldn’t we all be like that?
- You’re a Team. Have you forgotten? Husband and wife are a team – tackling life together. Your kids are going to grow up – your buddies/girlfriends will shift, your employment will change… You. Are. A. Team. Use date night to work together on a project, to overcome a fear, to plan a new outcome, and set goals. Oh, please set goals together! Here’s a post about setting goals as husband and wife.
- Keep Each Other Young. Use date night to play. Use that time together to renew your playful spirit, and to find the kid hidden inside you both. Try board games from your childhood, or legos, or swing, or play hop-scotch, or…
- Ask Great Questions. Robert just finished a great book, A More Beautiful Question: The Power of Inquiry to Spark Breakthrough Ideas by Warren Berger. The premise of the book is that by questioning, deeply, imaginatively, and “beautifully” we can identify and solve problems, come up with game-changing ideas, and pursue fresh opportunities. Use the power of questions to enrich your life together! Need suggestions for questions? Try our eBook!
- Romance is ALIVE and well! Do you remember the “tingles”… those flutters, and quivers when you first saw your spouse? My first memory of Rob is hearing his deep, bass voice answering questions behind me in church. (I was 14 – he was 16.) Later, when we began dating, I would get this thrill, just to know he was going to knock on our side door, and take me out for the evening. When was the last time you felt the “tingles”? Have you dressed up for your spouse lately? Have you given her a gift? (Yeah, gifts are another of the five love languages.) What about trying a few new options in your intimacy, or an invitation to slow dance to a love song… a moonlight kiss, or a love note? A date night will keep the romance in your marriage alive!
- Connect and Communicate to Encourage. We all long to feel understood, don’t we? We all need to feel affirmed. Each spouse – husband or wife – wants to feel valued. Date night does all of this – if you’ve decided to make the event (morning, noon or night) a tool to connect and communicate. It’s up to you. Each of you. Date night is the best choice to encourage your spouse, if you keep this in mind.
Is it time for a date night?
… to communicate, face-to-face…
… to connect emotionally …
Intentionally share yourself with your spouse.
Date Night. With a purpose.
“…arise, my love, my beautiful one, and come away.
O my dove, in the clefts of the rock,
in the crannies of the cliff,
let me see your face, let me hear your voice”
Song of Solomon 2:13-14
I’m sure you’ve already heard of the book by Gary Chapman, The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts – but in case you have yet to read it… please – take the time!
Really. You’re relationship will be forever changed!
It’s the first resource that Robert and I recommend for anyone. Everyone. It’s easy to understand, and easy to do. Yup. It has the big picture and the practical.
There are 5 ways we feel loved – and one of them is our primary way. So many spouses believe they’re communicating their love, and yet the other isn’t “getting” it. This book will get you on the road to solving that problem.
Have you read it a while ago? Maybe it’s time to re-read it. Together. With your spouse!
AH… another date night activity?