A “Business of Marriage” meeting is an intentionally scheduled sit-down talk with your partner to review important topics such as finances, career challenges, childcare or pet care matters, upcoming visit or trips and even an emotional check-in. Ideally the meeting will happen on a weekly basis, is scheduled ahead of time, and can be as long as or as short as the couple needs (usually 30 minutes is enough). While the idea of a “business of marriage” meeting on a weekly basis may seem unromantic, many couples who do engage in this practice find it helps them to create more romance into their relationship. Here are a few benefits to making the “Business of Marriage” meeting a regular practice in your relationship:
1. It can prevent resentment from building up: Sometimes one person is more of the planner or organizer in the relationship and ends up doing much more of the daily living tasks associated with keeping a household running. Other partners just take on certain tasks without checking in with the other about how they feel about this division of labor. Both situations can lead to resentment over time. A “Business of Marriage” meeting will force both partners to take accountability for the tasks required to run the household.
2. It can lead to more sex: Once couples begin to use the “Business of Marriage” meeting and realistically look at all of their obligations/events, they often realize they are not making time for the relationship. Many couples will then make sure to schedule time for dates with their partner and time to relax at home with each other, both of which can lead to more opportunities to have sex.
3. It can keep you on track with your individual and relationship goals: We all set goals, but without the follow through nothing will change or be achieved. Couples often have good intentions in setting goals for their relationship but struggle with how to follow through. With a weekly check-in like the “Business of Marriage” meeting, it forces each partner to be accountable for the action needed to reach these goals. It can also help partners stay on track with their own individual goals and gives the partner an opportunity to be supportive of these goals (for example by offering childcare so a partner can spend time applying for a new job or training for a race).
4. It can lead to more appreciation: The “Business of Marriage” meeting is also a weekly opportunity to not only show what you are contributing to the relationship, but what your partner is too. Couples who engage in this weekly meeting often report feeling more appreciated by their partner, and that they are also more appreciative of the ways their partner is contributing.
5. It can reduce stress: Disorganization can lead to more stress! Couples who engage in the weekly “Business of Marriage” meeting will be more organized across the board—with finances, with childcare, with long-term planning, with scheduling other activities they enjoy, etc. It can also reduce stress by preventing partners from surprising the other by brining up stressful topics at inconvenient times (no need to bring up that upcoming in-law visit or the need to pay off that credit card while out on a date with each other if you know you’ll address it at your weekly meeting). And remember, generally less stress leads to more opportunities to connect sexually.