These Are the Simple Things That the Happiest Couples Really Do Together
Turn off your streaming devices and step away from the Seamless: The best way for couples to keep the spark alive actually doesn't involve Netflix or pizza.
At least that's the conclusion drawn from a 7,300-comment thread currently blazing its way to the top of Reddit, simply titled "What is one thing every couple should do together?"
The majority of the responses display a glaring absence of anything TV- or takeout-related. Instead, the joint activities that couples have found rewarding are special, intimate and date-like.
It makes sense: Research backs up the idea that engaging in shared activities (like, actual activities) can have positive effects in sustaining the quality of a relationship. When those experiences feel new and fresh, a 2014 study in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships found, they can help a couple's love and attraction grow.
In short, best to turn off the Netflix, face each other and do as these Reddit couples do. Here's what some of the happiest Reddit couples are up to, according to /r/AskReddit.
They're into shared projects.
"Grow a garden," KingDiEd writes. "The feeling of working together to create things from dirt and seeds and watch them grow over the course of a few months is amazing. Then you get to say shit like 'You see this carrot? We did this. We made this,' and then devour it."
"we find new hobbies to have together," says dangerstar19. "Right now, we're trying out knitting. It's fun because we're able to explain it to each other when one gets confused."
Legos are also an option. "Build a complex Lego set," writes goatman2112. "It teaches you to sort of out the little problems, find what matters, and in the end you've built something you can be proud of life. Life's kinda like that."
They know that food is love.
Many coupled Reddit users are all about that kitch', 'bout that kitch', that kitchen. "Cook together!" writes Snowflakexxbabii. "It's always really fun, and cooking is a useful life skill. If y'all don't know how to cook, learn together! It's worth it."
User Texavelle82 adds a tech-free twist: "Cook together and sit down at the table to eat together. No phones, no TV, just the two of you enjoying each others' company with no distractions."
They get off the couch.
"Get fit together. Or get fat together. Whatever seems more fun," says hank_moo_d.
For those looking to get fit, users threw out a diverse batch of activity suggestions ranging from hiking to dancing to lifting. "If you ever want to test your relationship, just go canoeing," quips IsaacAsimovsSideburn.
Or, as clinomanicdepressive puts it, they work out enough to become "swolemates."
They play games like kids.
Not mind games, though. Those are generally understood as bad for relationships. Instead, make it a board game, or get all Lana del Rey and make it digital, like user iownaguardfish: "Playing video games together is pretty fun. Teamwork and all that. :)"
Yes, puzzles also count. "My wife and I did a puzzle last week. Kids were asleep, quiet in the house, no talking, just puzzle-doing. Was oddly therapeutic," writes kingjoedirt.
They hit the road.
Many couples will be quick to share their favorite road trip story, and for good reason — spending that much time together with a single person is bound to create some serious intimacy.
If you're low on vacation time, Reddit user CDC_ stands by "unplanned day trips," writing, "My wife loves it when I just tell her to hop in the car and we go someplace ridiculous."
When all else fails, they STFU.
While it's debatable whether or not this is actually an "activity," the advice of CuntyMcGiggles is worth following: "Be comfortable in silence with each other."
After all, while doing activities together is rewarding, sometimes the greatest perk of being a couple is having the freedom to do — and say — nothing at all.