New Year's Relationship Evaluation

An annual emotional check-up can work wonders.

Posted Dec 22, 2017

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We've all heard enough about New Year's resolutions by now. This year I'd like to suggest that you try something different — a New Year's Relationship Evaluation. Take a close look at your relationship, and your life, and ask yourself some deep questions. It could give you the clarity you need to get what you want out of the year ahead as well as some insights into how to avoid the difficulties of the year past. I firmly believe that if you want to grow personally you have to take an honest look at where you are before you can determine where you want to go, and are able to go. Doing a serious relationship evaluation at least once a year is necessary to keep your life balanced; if you want to grow at an accelerated rate, I suggest doing it twice a year.

Here are 10 questions to help you begin the process and show you where you may need to make course corrections. These should be fuel for helping you understand how progress in your relationship is being made. It also opens the door for some serious relationship discussion. Most important, it can help you discover how to achieve your goals with each other for the rest of the year.

These questions are not designed for quick answers; this is not a race. Take your time and feel as well as think about how you can most honestly answer. Read the entire list before you begin, and allow each question to digest slowly. Taking your time will deliver the best insights:

1. What are the most valuable things we achieved in the past year?

2. What would I like to change about myself? What would I like to change about my relationship?

3. What are my most significant personal — and relationship — goals for the next year?

4. What are the most significant personal — and relationship — challenges I'm facing?

5. How can I improve the way I deal with the current challenges in my relationship?

6. What do I need to keep doing more of? What should I do less?

7. How am I treating the most important people in my life?

8. How can I give more of the best parts of myself to those I love?

9. How will I add joy to my life in the next year?

10. What do I wish for the future of my relationship?

If you need to make changes in your relationship or your personal life, first write down exactly what it is you want to change. Writing down a goal, research shows, increases your chance of making that change as much as 300 percent. Next, share those ideas or goals with your partner, and commit to support each other in achieving them.

Last and most important, review your desired changes or goals daily. Post them near the refrigerator or on your computer desktop, someplace where you will see them often. This will provide subconscious reinforcement and aid you in reaching your goals in less time. Making one significant change per month is appropriate for most people; if you try to eat the whole pie at once, you’ll just make yourself sick.

These self-evaluations are one of the most powerful tools you can use to boost your enjoyment of both your life and your relationship. If deeper questions or concerns arise, talk with someone you trust and be proactive by taking the steps necessary to create balance where needed. It’s your life, and no one can make it better but you.