Releasing to see the Rocks

They called them raft rippers.

Enormous rocks lurking just below the rollicking waters of the middle fork of the Salmon River, lying in wait to ruin a rafting trip by slicing into the inflatable vessels that we floated down in. It was May, so the water level was high in the river canyon, and the rocks were hidden just underneath. We only knew that they might exist from tales when the water was lower.  Knowing where the raft rippers were, and the best way to navigate around them, kept the rafting exciting but not perilous.

These hazards exist in every relationship.
Some are always visible, such as finances and careers.
Most lay somewhat hidden by the rushing water of everyday life.  

You might be thinking, ”what’s that got to do with going away for a weekend to talk about plans for the year with my partner”?

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When to plan? We have suggestions.

Stating the obvious: picking a date to create a plan for your next year is going to be dependent on you and your partner’s schedule.

We’ve found that the beginning of the year naturally works well. The first holiday after the New Year is the long weekend for Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday in January, and that has consistently been good to us, as both of us get a day off work. Perhaps that works for you as well!

What dates work for you, and why? Let us know, and help out your other unionists!

5 Tips to Keep from Just Drifting Along

Sailing off into the sunset is often the end of the movie, but the actual beginning of the true, long-term relationship. We assume there’s nothing but smooth waters ahead, but anyone in an actual long-term relationship knows this uncharted territory can be much tricker than simply falling in love. How then to navigate the waters of a lifetime union without running aground on major life events or, worse, just drifting aimlessly along?

  1. Have a destination on your map (create shared goals):

Rarely do we leave the house with no idea of where we are going; yet we often start our time together with a significant other just “seeing how things go.” Initially, this is a great way to test the waters, but a successful long-term relationship requires input from both of you in terms of where you want to go in life or one of you will feel like you’ve been taken for a ride. What do you, personally, want to do with your time on Earth? What does your partner want to accomplish? Where do these overlap and how can you make space on your map to visit all of these goals, together? Finish a degree, open a business, build a family. Goals, both personal and shared, shape our lives and should be verbalized early and often in a relationship. They will change over time as you deal with the changing tides of life, but knowing what they are will give you something to steer towards, together.

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