Want More Intimacy? Get More Chores Done!

3/21/2019

I'm sure everyone is familiar with the conventional wisdom:

Happy wife, happy life!

Turns out, there's research that backs that up. Adj. Assoc. Prof. Dan Carlson, et al., in a paper titled, Stalled for Whom? Change in the Division of Particular Housework Tasks and Their Consequences for Middle- to Low-Income Couples, observed that:

The equal sharing of housework is more positively related to sexual intimacy and relationship satisfaction among more recent cohorts and more negatively related to marital discord.

Whether it's related to acts of service, from 5 love languages, building & maintaining a strong emotional connection with your partner or something completely different - sharing household responsibilities is good for your relationship. And whom among us doesn't want more intimacy and less discord?

Since we're all practicing assuming positive intent, why is it that when you ask your partner to do the dishes, take out the trash or pick up that dessert you love, do they forget?

What if I told you that it's not because they don't love you or care about your needs? Your significant other wants to do things that make you happy. However, getting your significant other to complete a task requires 2 things.

The first thing you need is better timing. The timing of the request has to be right. Oftentimes, couples communicate when it’s convenient, not when it’s appropriate. For example, the few minutes you have together before either of you gets out of bed, or walks out the door in the morning, is a very convenient time to chat. Likewise, we’re all familiar with the mid-day text, that you don’t have time to respond to. That happens because the texter has a few minutes to stop and think, and that’s when they remember they need you to get the milk. So, that’s when they send the text. In either scenario, the time isn’t right for the other person to fulfill the request. If you can’t stop and pickup milk on the way into work, on the way out the door isn’t a good time to make the request. The best time to ask someone to complete a task is when they actually have the time to complete the task.

The second thing you need is repetition. Have you ever heard yourself exasperatedly bemoan, “Why do I have to ask you to do something a million times before you do it?” The answer is simple, because repetition works. The problem with repetition is that the one person feels like a parrot, and an angry parrot at that. And we all know the difference between how someone responds when you complete a task upon first request, as opposed to on the 5th request. And nobody wants that.

We want you to have more intimacy and less discord. So, next time you need your significant other to do something, use iprompted and try to time it at a time when they are most likely to get the task done.