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Date Night

Ahh, date night! A chance to slip away with your spouse and remind each other why you fell in love in the first place, and that you carry a spark for each other still. Here are a few ideas to make every date night great.

1. Pencil it in. Strive to set up at least one mini-date every week — even if it’s just grabbing a quick cup of coffee together. And aim to enjoy a real, full-scale date every other week at minimum.

2. Schedule smart. The idea of date night turns off many early-bird couples. If mornings suit you better, make plans earlier in the day — like a leisurely breakfast out or a sunrise walk in the park.

3. Keep it light. Conversations about housekeeping (whose car needs new tires) or problems (“What’s up with Mikey’s math grades?”) are off-limits.

4. Minimize the multitasking. It’s tempting to call a trip to the garden center a date, so you can cross two tasks off your to-do list. But don’t. The whole point is to concentrate on each other, not your chores.

5. Double-date. When you make it a foursome and share deep conversation — real self-disclosure, not just small talk — you grow closer to the group, but you also feel more deeply in touch with your partner, finds new research from UCLA.

6. Relax about reciprocity. Yes, ideally you and your spouse would share the date-planning responsibility, but face it: If you want date night to happen, it may be faster and easier to set it up yourself.

7. Sex is optional. Contrary to popular opinion, every good date doesn’t have to wind up with a frolic in bed. But do remember to end on a high note by thanking each other for making time for the date.

8. Avoid rain checks. While there will be times when you’d really like to cancel a date, try to resist that urge, put on your game face, and go. That lets your spouse know how much you value your time together.

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