Relationship Minute: Morning Greetings

When you wake up in the morning, what are the first words you say to your partner?

How you start your day in a relationship is important. If you begin with criticism (imagine a sarcastic “Oh, look who decided to finally get out of bed?”) or stonewalling (such as, still not speaking to each other after last night’s fight), you set a strong negative tone—not to mention inviting the Four Horsemen to breakfast!

Even addressing responsibilities first thing in the morning (“Hi, you need to walk the dog, make the kids’ lunches, and put gas in the car”) puts a strain on your connection.

Consider beginning your morning with fondness and admiration. When you wake up, greet your lover with a simple “Good morning, sweetheart.” Ask how they slept. If you’re up before them, prepare their favorite morning beverage or bring them a breakfast treat if you have time. Whether it’s a snuggle in bed or a kiss before you go to work, these morning greetings can make all the difference.

It’s understandable if this is difficult because your partner works night shifts or you have dramatically different schedules. It’s not about the timing as it is about being intentional about acknowledging each other and taking a crucial moment to express your love.

What can you do to greet your partner with fondness and admiration in the morning?

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The Relationship Minute is from The Gottman Institute. Visit their website.