The Importance of Undivided Attention

There are a million demands every day on your attention. Your job, your politics, your kids, your spouse, your family, and your home all demand some form of attention on a regular basis. Most people who work and maintain a family life feel that they are pulled in a million different directions every day. This kind of stress and tension is very common. You may feel that you do not have time in the day to devote to the activities that you truly enjoy. However, it is important that you do not neglect the most important relationship you have: your marriage.

In all the demand for your attention, you may have heard your spouse mention the lack of time you spend together. If this is true, do not ignore this observation. Your spouse is giving you the answer to what could become a very damaging problem. In an ideal situation, you would not need to wait for your spouse to mention that they feel a loss of time spent with you. You would already incorporate this time into your schedule.

You need to schedule some undivided attention with your spouse. This kind of attention is very different than the kind you get on a family outing or at the dinner table with kids. Undivided attention sends the message that your spouse is important to you, that your relationship is a priority, and that his or her thoughts are worthy of your time and respect. Because of this, undivided attention can help solve the problems in a marriage on multiple levels.

You can give your partner respect by listening to their concerns, joys, needs, dreams, and desires on a regular basis. Take some time to really listen to what your partner is thinking and ask him or her questions. You might think you know everything about each other, but remember that people change over time. Dreams come and go, opinions develop, and concerns can mount. So listen to your spouse as though you don’t know anything about them. This kind of undivided attention will go a long way to building understanding between you two.

To create time for undivided attention, you do not need to drop everything for hours on end. This kind of time together can be effective in small blocks if you make time on a regular basis. Try scheduling a lunch together once a week where you sit and talk about things unrelated to the house, kids, or family. Try reserving the last hour or even thirty minutes before you go to sleep to spending time together with no interruptions. Or take a weekend away and really spend some alone time with your partner rekindling romance and deepening your intimacy.

However you choose to do it, giving your partner undivided attention will create a sense of importance and value in your relationship. Do not feel guilty about taking time away from children to have this time together. You need to show your kids by example how to have a successful relationship. So put your marriage first sometimes and be there for each other in daily life, not just in a crisis.



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