“Love is not looking at each other, but looking together in the same direction.” – Antoine De Saint-Exupery
After you have made a long term commitment, it is important that you create a plan for your life together. This plan is designed for 5 years, but can be modified for a shorter or longer term. It should be written down so that you can revisit it later.
1. What do you like about your relationship? What are specific steps that you can take to maintain the aspects of the relationship that you like?
2. What do you dislike or find challenging about your relationship? What are specific steps that you can take to improve the aspects that you dislike?
3. Do you expect your family to grow? How many children? When? Will you adopt or become a foster parent?
4. Are you planning a career change or leave of absence? How will that affect your family?
5. Will you relocate to another home, city or state? What is your transition plan for that?
6. How will you nurture your relationship?
7. What are your dreams/fantasies together (e.g. travel, new experiences) in other words what is your “bucket list”?
8. What are your major individual goals and how can your partner help support you in that effort?
9. Who are the couples (famous or non-famous) that you admire? Why? What aspects of that relationship can you adopt for your own?
10. Is your “business” in order? What outstanding debt do you have? Healthcare? Life insurance? Will? How can you be more organized and tackle any open items?
Be sure to REVISIT your plan at least once a year. Cross off any items that you’ve accomplished and celebrate that. Modify your plan based on life’s surprises or your changing needs.