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9 Steps to setting goals with your partner

Tristan is a love stylist who, through internal and external makeovers, guides her clients on all matters surrounding falling in like, falling in love and falling into bed. She is also the author of MENu Dating: Taste Your Way to the Mai...

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Don't let the humdrum day-to-day routine drag your marriage into a slump. Refresh your relationship by revisiting (and refreshing) your goals. Here's how to set goals with your partner in nine steps.

Couple setting goals

More steps to goal setting

4Prioritize

Combine your lists, organizing them by individual, joint and family goals. Prioritize each area and then the list as a whole, ensuring that you give each person's respective individual goals equal attention.

5Get specific

Once you've zeroed in on the most important goals, get specific about how you will achieve them together. For each goal, even an individual one, both members should play a role. Couple goal setting is as much about achieving your actual goals as it is about strengthening your bond.

6Be S.M.A.R.T.

See if your mapped-out goals pass the time-tested S.M.A.R.T. test. Are your goals Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time Sensitive? If not, revise the goal and/or plan until it meets these criteria.

7Write them down

Write down your goals and the path to achievement, clearly. Post them where you both can see them, such as on a bathroom mirror.

8Be flexible

Be flexible with your goals. Set mini-milestones or intermediary checkpoints for reevaluation. Don't hesitate to modify the goal or timeline as needed. Remember that progress is success.

9Celebrate

When you reach your goals, or even sub goals, celebrate! Celebrations help keep you motivated.

How to talk to men

For women, talking to men can be difficult and intimidating. Because men and women are on different levels, sometimes it can feel like you're not getting through to your partner and vice versa. When talking to men, there is really just one thing that women should know, and it will make your life a lot easier.

More on relationships & communication

Talking to men: The one thing women should know
Why men avoid relationship confrontation
Arguing effectively: How to communicate with your man without losing it

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