Tim and I just celebrated 15 years of marriage. We’ve learned so much along the way. It has not always been easy, but I thank God for the gift of Tim every day. Here is one of the greatest tools we were given along the journey thus far.
Several years ago Tim and I went to a weekend seminar called “PAIRS” which stands for Practical Application of Intimate Relationship Skills.
During that weekend we gained practical tools and insights on what makes for a great relationship. One of the tools is called The Daily Temperature Reading.
Basically we learned that bonding requires 2 essential ingredients: 1) emotional openness 2) physical closeness. The reason you “bond” with people you work with over the water cooler is because often that is the place (and those are the people) with whom you are both physically close and emotionally open. Obviously, bonding is what we seek with our spouses, closest friends, and family – but how do we foster it?
The Daily Temperature reading is a skill that was born out of researching couples who had strong bonds. People with strong, healthy relationships do 5 things naturally every day – that’s right, every day. Most of us do not do these things naturally every day, but we can work on this skill to strengthen the bond in our most important relationships. The Daily Temperature Reading (DTR) works like this:
- Sit across from each other, and hold hands (physical closeness)
- Share the following things back and forth (with emotional openness)
- New information
- Complaint with request for change
- Wishes, hopes & dreams
As with any relationship skill, this only works where there is good will and mutual respect. My prayer for you today is that you might strengthen the bonds with those closest to you.