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We often hear the words “quality time,” but what does that expression really mean?
It’s more than just a hollow catchphrase, and actually describes time spent together without distraction.
Some people might feel that hanging out together is enough, but if you’re both on your phones instead of paying full attention to one another, then that isn’t quality time – it’s just being in the same space.
And that won’t cut it.
If you and your partner have realized that quality time comes top on one (or both) of your five love languages list, then that’s great!
There are tons of things the two of you can do together to strengthen and celebrate your relationship.
What Does It Mean If Quality Time Is My Love Language?
Basically, it means that you love spending one-on-one time with the person you love.
Maybe you enjoy doing projects together, or you like to spend evenings watching horrible reality TV shows to try to anticipate which train wreck will explode first.
Whatever it is that the two of you do together, you need it to be dedicated and genuine. This means real conversations, and engaging experiences.
If you’re outdoorsy types, you might enjoy hiking or canoeing together, or even foraging for tasty mushrooms.
Weekend camping trips might be high on your list of priorities, as you get uninterrupted time together where you can roast marshmallows and make up new names and stories about the constellations above.
When you don’t get proper, engaged alone time with your beloved, you might feel neglected and unappreciated.
After all, if they don’t put in the time and effort to show you that you’re a priority to them, then you’ll feel that you aren’t a priority at all.
If you find that time spent with your partner results in them being distracted or otherwise engaged, talk to them about it.
Your partner might not speak the same primary love language as you do, and it might not even occur to them that not being fully present and engaged is hurtful to you.
Hey, if they haven’t done the love languages quiz yet, that’s something you can do with them.
Load up the quiz and ask them the questions, then compare notes!
You’ll learn more about each other in the process, and have a better idea how to express your love to each other properly.
How To Express Care If This Is Your Partner’s Love Language
In simplest terms, be genuine and deliberate with the time you spend with them.
You can start by setting aside a block of time for them, like date night, and making sure you hold that commitment.
Sure, life happens and you might have to cancel now and then, but making a habit of being unavailable to them when you said you’d spend time together will make them feel like they’re not a priority in your life.
Talk to your partner and find out when would be a perfect time for the two of you to get together, and clear your schedule for a few hours.
Don’t check your phone; don’t allow any other distractions to seep in. This time is for the two of you, and that’s it.
Bonus points if you plan some wonderful things for the two of you to do together, whether it’s on your own, or with their help.
The key here is to make sure that you set aside this time for the two of you, and stick to your plans.
As mentioned earlier, the best way to ensure that you’ll hurt the one you love is to make them feel like they’re being taken for granted.
If you make a habit of breaking plans with them because something more important came along, or you forgot, or you fell asleep, they’ll end up feeling like they’re just a piece of furniture. Like they don’t exist unless it’s convenient to you… and that’s an awful feeling.
Examples Of Quality Time
Just about any activity can fall under the “quality time” banner: what makes it special is that the two of you are doing these things together.
Remember that it’s the intention behind the action, not the action itself.
Since spending time together can take so many different forms, sit down and brainstorm some fun, interesting, and engaging things that the two of you can do together.
Sure, we all have individual interests, but there’s undoubtedly some crossover, right?
Here are a few ideas that can get the ball rolling:
Learn a new language together. This could be just for fun, or in preparation for a trip that you plan on taking in the near future.
Not only will this be a great way of spending quality time together, you’ll learn the language more quickly by practicing it together.
Start a creative project. Is there something you’ve always wanted to build, but you’ve either been hesitant to start, or you’d need an extra set of hands to do it? Well, there’s no time like the present!
Plant a garden, build a bookcase, work on a 10,000-piece puzzle. Whatever piques your combined interests, set time aside to work on it at least twice a week, and dive in!
Cook together. Even if one of you could burn water and can’t tell garam masala from graham crackers, it’s great to cook and play together in the kitchen.
If neither of you can cook, this is a great way to learn! You could even start by getting meal prep boxes delivered to your place: they only require heat and assembly, so you’ll learn new skills and get to eat delicious food. That’s a win-win!
Take a mini road trip. You might not have the means (or the time off work) to travel thousands of miles together, but you can take a weekend road trip somewhere awesome.
Choose a destination that’s a few hours or a day’s drive away, pack some snacks and great tunes, and off you go.
Bonus points if you select somewhere ridiculous, like a statue of the world’s biggest turnip, or a heritage museum full of old wrenches.
Be sure to pick up a piece of memorabilia while you’re at it, because you have to have a physical reminder of this delightful travesty.
More ideas can be found in our article: 100 Hobbies For Couples To Do Together: The Ultimate List!
Try To Communicate About Your Needs
Communication is one of the most important things in any relationship.
If you feel that the time you’re spending with your partner isn’t fulfilling to you, either because they’re not fully present, or you’re not doing things together that you both enjoy, then it’s a good idea to talk about that.
You can let them know how you feel, and ask their input about how they’re feeling about the situation in turn.
It could be something as simple as their own interests have veered off in a different direction and they would rather do something else together, but they don’t want to let you down.
People (and couples) can often get set in their ways, and if one partner’s interests shift, there’s the possibility of a disconnect.
For example, if a couple has been very homebound and sedentary, and one partner decides to take up running but the other one isn’t interested, that can cut down on quality time together.
In a situation like this, the two of you can find a happy middle ground with activities that you can both enjoy.
If they’re the one who’s into running and you’re not into it, maybe you can take walks or bike rides together instead. That way, there’s still physical activity, but not as intense.
And in turn, if you feel more comfortable at home, you can find something new that you can do indoors together. Like one of the joint projects or pursuits mentioned above.
Hey, you can even try something that melds the two, like a Wii game: that way you’re both active, but in the comfort of your own home.
It’s win-win! Quality time is maintained, while making sure both partners feel fulfilled.
Ways For Quality Time Lovers To Deepen Connections
Put down your phone. Seriously, start with that.
Most of us are absolutely tied to our devices, which puts a massive damper on our interpersonal relationships.
Unless you’re checking your phone every few minutes because a family member is in hospital and you’re waiting for updates, there’s nothing that can’t wait a couple of hours.
Whether you’re having a special movie date night with your partner, or you’re out at brunch together, don’t even look at your phone.
In fact, if at all possible, turn it off, or don’t have it anywhere near you.
You’re aiming to spend time together without distractions, and constantly checking messages, emails, and Twitter updates isn’t the way to do that.
Some Fun Gift/Togetherness Ideas
Since quality time together can encompass so many different pursuits, you have a huge wealth of possibilities when it comes to gift ideas.
Start by sitting down together and making a list of all the things you enjoy doing together, and rank them on a scale from “super awesome” to “meh”.
That will give you a great leaping-off point for gifts, projects, etc.
Museum Membership If you two love history and culture, consider getting a membership to a museum that you both really enjoy.
You’ll get invitations to special events and exclusive exhibits, and there are often members-only hours so you can enjoy the space without being swamped by hordes of other visitors.
Wine and Cheese Club: Are you both foodies? Consider subscribing to a monthly wine and cheese tasting club.
This is ideal for date nights, as you can unbox the crate together and then ooh and ahh over the bevvies and snacks inside.
If you find that you really enjoy it, you could end up taking a sommelier course together. Before you know it, you’ll be starting your own vineyard.
Board Games: This may seem cheesy, but our world has become so techy and digital that having some analog fun with some board games can be a lot of fun.
Collect a few different ones, and alternate between them to keep things interesting. Some vintage ones are especially fun, and there are hundreds (if not thousands) to choose from.
Quality time together is incredibly special, and worth dedicating ourselves to without distraction.
We choose our partners because of who they are, and how much we love them, and we really never know how much time we have together.
This is one of many reasons why quality time with the ones we love is so important.
The next time you find yourself being distracted when you’re supposed to be spending time with your partner, ask yourself whether that distraction is really worth alienating or upsetting the one you love.
Similarly, if your partner is the one who’s being distracted instead of being present with you, ask them that question, but gently.
Not aggressively or cruelly. But just to bring their awareness back to here, and now, with you.
They’re the most important person in your world, as you are in theirs.
So let’s all give our loved ones the care and attention they deserve. They’re certain to reciprocate, and we’ll all appreciate the time we have together.
Still have questions about the Quality Time Love Language? Chat online to a relationship expert from Relationship Hero who can help you figure things out. Simply click here to chat.
More in this series:
- Words Of Affirmation Love Language
- Acts Of Service Love Language
- Receiving Gifts Love Language
- Physical Touch Love Language