The Micro-Date Revolution

Rethinking Date Night

When I ask my couples clients what they do to nourish their love, I usually get something like: We’ll watch a movie or go to our favorite restaurant over the weekend. The next thing they will tell me is why they haven’t had a date night in weeks or even months. There is nothing wrong with making date night, but when couples stress over making it happen and feel tethered to “waiting” before they can enjoy some connection time, I like to introduce what I call the micro-date.  

What is a Micro-Date? 

When I introduce the micro-date to couples, I usually get a mixture of relief and surprise. “Could it be so simple?” Is written on their faces. I like to think of the micro-date as your ‘relationship harmonizer.’ 

A micro-date can happen anywhere and anytime in as little as five seconds. The most important thing, I tell my clients, is to “intentionalize” your micro-date. 

A micro-date is like having a mindful practice, in which you get to build into your every-day routine “connection-pauses” and take the time to smell the roses; in this case, notice your partner. So what exactly constitutes a micro-date? 

It’s a deliberate conscious act of focusing on your partner in a loving, supportive way. It could be giving a “rockstar” compliment – you know, the kind of compliment that ripples through your Joy Zone – or showing genuine interest in some “moment” of your partner’s day. 

Don’t forget to set the intention right before having a date! Remember that you are injecting a felt quality into the moment, ensuring that you and your partner feel closer. 

Let's Talk. Schedule a Free Consultation Today.

How to Have a Micro-Date

When Adira and Richard came to me, they were both feeling depleted from being in “survivor-mode” for weeks on end. Richard faced mounting stress from losing his business in the pandemic while trying his best to accept the new reality of working from home and having to consider vocational opportunities that, according to him, were not ideal options for his entrepreneurial-driven career path. Adira looked after their three small children together, which involved a lot of special care for their two children with longstanding chronic health issues. 

Adira and Richard complained of not having any time for each other. They both felt like their intentions were in the right place, but their days seemed ruled by things to get done. Taking several hours off from each of their hectic schedules to be together was met with a growing sense of futility. 

During our sessions together, Adira and Richard gained a much greater understanding of a set of gridlocked issues that continued to surface in their relationship. They learned to process old and new pain forming emotional blocks in their relationship and keeping them from feeling motivated to grow together. But even when the relationship infrastructure felt a lot more secure than it had for a long time, Adira and Richard both felt they were still struggling to prioritize relationship care.  

Together we brainstormed a micro-date relationship care plan if you will. Adira and Richard decided to create a love jar as a kind of talisman for their micro-dates. Each day, they would add things to the love jar – a thoughtful wish, a compliment, a vulnerable confession, a flirty note, funny share, silly picture, open-question, hand-picked rose, inspiring quote, surprise (e.g., I’ve got dinner tonight!) – even a request for a good hug. 

The more positive feelings that flowed into the jar, the more they felt inspired to build on their micro-dates. They also created a morning coffee ritual and made it a no-phone-just-each-other-for-five-minutes micro-date, setting the intention to be present for their day and each other. 

They emptied their love jar each evening and set the intention to wake up with a “tabula rasa” or fresh slate and nourish their love all over again. 

(Anyone can make a love jar with a Mason Jar and non-sticky notes or non-adhesive memo notes. If you prefer to order a ready-made jar with blank cards that come with it, I like the Love Jars from: Gratitude Glass Jars)

What Micro-dates Can Do On the Bigger Scale

Richard recognized that losing his business seemed to stir up deep-seated emotions he had been holding in for years. He expressed that he had an “addiction” to receiving approval from others. Richard said that he felt like he had been releasing the “identity rope.” 

Adira recognized how often she dismissed her own feelings, which came from experiencing a sense of “undeserving”  – an inner wounding that originated in the past. Adira practiced feeling “deserving energy” by receiving compliments and refraining from her knee-jerk tendency to dismiss praise and flattery words. 

Adira realized that she was still treating her feelings how her feelings had been treated when she was younger and subconsciously activating this dismissive pattern – against herself. Adira practiced accepting her partner’s expressed admiration and saying, “thank you.” 

The micro-dates not only cultivated a more positive emotional climate in which Adira and Richard were able to foster greater shared meaning in their relationship but a ripe space for growth and understanding, both individually and in the “we-ness” perspective they were stepping into more readily. The micro-dates helped maintain and fortify the healing anchoring work in our sessions together. 

(Names have been changed to maintain confidentiality.)

Click Below for Your FREE Download of Amy-Noelle's Micro-Date Ideas.

14 Micro-Date Ideas + More!

micro-date revolution date night
Amy-Noelle Shih, MA, LPC - Houston, Texas Marriage Counselor _ Houston, Texas Therapist

Amy-Noelle Shih,M.A., LPC is a powerful, dynamic, couples counselor, individual therapist and life coach with a direct, authentic approach to personal growth. Her style is as affirming and positive as it is effective, and all about helping you create alignment and joy in yourself and in your relationships.

Real Help For Your Relationship

Lots of couples go through challenging times, but the ones who turn "rough-patches" into "growth moments" can come out the other side stronger and happier than ever before.

 

Working with an expert couples counselor can help you create understanding, empathy and open communication that felt impossible before.

 

Start your journey of growth together by scheduling a free consultation.

Related Post

How to Let Go of Anger

How to Let Go of Anger

There is a time and place for healthy anger, and getting stuck in anger can keep you anchored to a painful past. Learn how to release anger and reclaim yourself, on this episode of the Love, Happiness and Success Podcast.

How to be Successful Online Dating

How to be Successful Online Dating

The online dating world can be a jungle. Online therapist and dating coach Jessica Small, M.A., LMFT shares her top tips for online dating. From creating your profile, avoiding red flags and disappointment, to setting yourself up for success!

Types of Intimacy

Types of Intimacy

There's more to intimacy than sex. Looking to reconnect, strengthen, or build a better bond with your partner? Online Marriage Counselor and Relationship Coach, Tomauro Veasley discusses the 4 types of intimacy that are imperative to a lasting, healthy relationship.

12 Effective Ways to Destroy Your Relationship

12 Effective Ways to Destroy Your Relationship

Are you unknowingly making serious relationship mistakes that are damaging the health of your partnership? Learn the most important things to avoid (and what to do instead!) in order to have a fantastic relationship on this episode of the Love, Happiness and Success Podcast.

Mindful Self Compassion

Mindful Self Compassion

How do you forgive yourself when you've hurt someone? How do you gain self awareness, master your emotions, and break destructive old patterns? Mindful self compassion can help you make peace with the past, and move forward. Here's how…

Loading...