The Ultimate Intimacy Podcast

184. The 2-2-2 Rule Is The Key To A Happy Marriage

August 18, 2023
The Ultimate Intimacy Podcast
184. The 2-2-2 Rule Is The Key To A Happy Marriage
Show Notes Transcript

For most couples, it is the little things that they stop doing that cause the big things to snowball in their marriage.. and often times even lead to divorce.

We ran across a great news article that talked about the 2-2-2 rule that couples say is the key to a happy marriage. After reading the article.. we agree. If couples can do these  3 simple things in their relationship, they will most likely see their marriage thrive. We are one of those couples that have seen our marriage transform because we implemented these things into our marriage on a regular basis.

In this episode, Nick and Amy talk about the article and the 2-2-2 rule and the simple things you can do to implement the 2-2-2 rule into your marriage. It really is the small and simple things that can cause great changes in your relationship.

If you haven't already, go check out the Ultimate Intimacy App in the app stores, or at ultimateintimacy.com to find "Ultimate Intimacy" in your marriage. It's FREE to download and so much fun! Find out why over 650,000 couples have downloaded the app and give it such high ratings and reviews!

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If you have any feedback, comments or topics you would like to hear on future episodes, reach out to us at amy@ultimateintimacy.com and let us know! We greatly appreciate your feedback and please leave us a review.

Amy: 0:00

You are listening to the Ultimate Intimacy Podcast, where we discuss how to find ultimate intimacy in your relationship. We believe that, no matter how many years you've been married, you can achieve passion, romance, happiness and ultimate intimacy at any stage of your life. Join us as we talk to not only marriage experts, but couples just like yourself and people who are just flat out fun. The Ultimate Intimacy Podcast is for couples who have a good relationship but want to make it even better. 

Nick: 0:42

Welcome to the Ultimate Intimacy Podcast, with Nick and Amy Excited to be here, excited for today's topic. But before we jump in, we wanted to address a couple things. Or is that the wording, I guess? 

Amy: 0:57

I guess that would be the wording addressing a few things. 

Nick: 1:01

Yeah, yeah. We get a ton of comments, a ton of feedback, which we absolutely love. 

Amy: 1:09

I feel like we get more reviews in email than actual reviews and messages, which is fine if that's more comfortable, but yeah, right. 

Nick: 1:21

Totally agree. 

Amy: 1:22

So I think that we just wanted to start out by sharing instead of sharing personal things about us at the beginning of this episode sharing a couple feelings that we have or have gotten since we started the podcast, right. 

Nick: 1:40

Yeah, yeah, it's fun Just feedback and comments and things like that. 

Amy: 1:44

Things that maybe we just need to shout out real quick, right. 

Nick: 1:47

Yeah, I mean first, first, we get. It's amazing how many awesome and amazing comments we get from a lot of you writing us, and we really, really appreciate that, really appreciate it. And we also get comments that aren't, you know, not very many, but sometimes some comments or feedback that's different, which we love as well too. I mean, if everyone was thinking the same way and had the same issues yeah, exactly. So, yeah, we appreciate both the positive and a couple of the negatives that we've gotten back the honest, the honest, the very honest thoughts. 

Amy: 2:21

Yeah, and it's fine, we can take it yeah. 

Nick: 2:23

Everyone's marriage is different, everyone's going through different things, and so yeah people are going to take certain things or maybe be offended by things that we say based upon what they're going through in their lives, and that's totally fine. 

Amy: 2:37

Yeah, so we just came up with a couple pointers that we just wanted to share. First off, it's important to remember that we are just a married couple with four kids, married 21 years. We've gone through some crap. We've implemented stuff into our life as you know our story to really change our marriage and make it amazing. And just because we say our marriage is amazing doesn't mean it's not, doesn't mean it's perfect. Absolutely not, but it also doesn't mean that we're like professionals. 

Nick: 3:11

So I think sometimes we get feedback and I'm like we're just a married couple, we're married couple, sharing the things that we've done in our marriage and things that we've experienced in our 21 years of marriage. And we want to share those things that we've experienced with you, because we have been at the depths of the low and now we feel like our marriage is really, really good. And it's taken a lot of work. It's taken a lot of hardships and hard things to go through to get it to this point. 

Amy: 3:46

And tears. 

Nick: 3:47

Yeah, and there will be even hard times probably ahead. I mean, that's just kind of life, right, right. But I think we've figured out a lot of things that can really help people's marriages and we know that. It is because we get tons and tons of emails all the time saying I can't believe how much this has just transformed our relationship, and so hopefully, the things that we are sharing and discussing and things that we've experienced in our life are having a good, profound impact for a lot of people. 

Amy: 4:16

For sure, but just remember that just because you listen to podcasts and people's opinions doesn't fix someone else's problem. So if there's something deeper going on in your marriage or you're dealing with some trauma or some really hard times like I, still promote getting like a professional to sit down with you, right. The next thing that I wanted to bring up was to remember that in our marriage and it wasn't always like this, but since we've had kids and started businesses and when life's gotten busier not harder, but busier, maybe more stressful I've become the high drive wife or sorry. 

Nick: 5:04

Nick wishes Wait, did something change overnight? What? 

Amy: 5:07

Wait, what did you take Hold on? I am the low drive wife and he is the high drive husband. 

Nick: 5:13

So we are, just like probably 95% of the couples out there. 

Amy: 5:18

And I know some people get offended when we don't clarify that can be the opposite, but just remember, the reason that we talk about this a lot is because we do feel like the majority of people fit into this. But we can only talk about what we are going through and what we've been through in our marriage, because we haven't been the opposite. So when we talk about all the time it's because that's what we know. 

Nick: 5:44

Yeah, when we get hate mail saying how can you? You know? 

Amy: 5:47

We don't get that. 

Nick: 5:48

Haha, I'm just teasing. 

Amy: 5:50

So, anyways, it's just some marriages are opposite. Remember that and it's very rare that both spouses are high drive, which is why we address this Like. I hardly know any couples that are like that. And I actually got a comment the other day that both spouses were high drive and I was like wait, wait what. 

Nick: 6:08

We need to have you on the podcast. 

Amy: 6:09

And she totally said she would. So it's going to come soon. 

Nick: 6:12

They've been married over 20 years and they're like we make love on a daily basis. We're like, oh, we got to get you on the podcast. 

Amy: 6:19

I would love to learn from you what you're doing, maybe whatever we're totally going to help them on. So there are very few people like that. And okay, which brings me to the next thing. Just because you're one person is high drive and one person is low drive doesn't make one better than the other, or one has issues One's right or wrong. Just remember that we're different. So yeah, and there's. 

Nick: 6:51

There's a lot of marriages out there where there's a high desire spouse and a low desire spouse and they still have great relationships. They still have frequent sexual intimacy. They found the balance that works in their marriage. One of the biggest issues that we see is one one spouse especially the low desire spouse, like we've talked about before says well, I'm not in the mood, therefore we're not going to have it, and they control every aspect of sex. So it's finding that balance and if you can find that balance, you're going to have an amazing, amazing relationship, even if there is a high and low desire. 

Amy: 7:26

I think the point of bringing that up is that one is not right and one is not wrong. We're just different. So it's just important to remember that. Nick has a super high drive, and so I look at him. I'm like what's wrong with you? And he looks at me and I have a low drive. He's like what's wrong with you, you need to be fixed. And I'm like, wait, you need to be fixed. Like I'm not, not that we really think the chutter needs to be fixed. It's just that we're different and so we embrace that difference. 

Nick: 7:51

Right, I saw on our. I saw on our Google search the other day, Diagra. 

Amy: 7:55

No, I no, I was wondering what that was. If you know Nick, you know he's joking. Most of the time I did not do that they know I'm joking. I actually appreciate that my spout, that my husband has a drive Like I know that. I'm very appreciative of that because I feel like it balances us and it helps us work together. That's what marriage is. If we were the same, we probably wouldn't have to work so hard at it. 

Nick: 8:20

Yeah, I think you're right. 

Amy: 8:21

Right. Another thing is and I listen to some other podcasts, not very often, but once in a while it's important to remember that we are us, this is our marriage, and you don't know everything that goes on behind the scenes and what we do for each other and how, like we don't share everything. So it's just important to be careful, just like we always say not to judge other marriages right, like we're not, we're not perfect, nobody's marriage is perfect. We always say don't compare. So, even when you're listening, we don't want you to think like we just don't want you to compare in a negative way. 

Nick: 9:05

Well, we've got some people contact us and say, oh, you look like you have the perfect marriage. Well, we have a great marriage. We have a great marriage. 

Amy: 9:12

But we work hard. 

Nick: 9:14

Yeah, we work really hard at it, we really do, we do. 

Amy: 9:20

And just like everyone else. 

Nick: 9:21

We have our insecurities, we have our flaws, we have our faults and we try every day to work hard and you know, for that ultimate intimacy like we talk about. 

Amy: 9:32

But on the flip side, we also got a comment on one of our podcasts that we were bickering, and I'm talking about communication. But yeah, we were like bickering about something and I'm like, yeah, that's because we're human. 

Nick: 9:45

Yeah, in fact, if you're coming. 

Amy: 9:46

If you're coming to listen to some couple that you think is like we're not, that we're not the right podcast. 

Nick: 9:53

Yeah, in fact what's funny is the podcast was on communication and I'm like, yeah, that just shows that we can like have a good conversation. So I went back and I listened to it and I'm like, yeah, we were kind of going back and forth, but Amy's and my personality like I kind of have a dry sense of humor right, I'll make a comment and if you don't know me you'll think man, he's like dead serious. 

Amy: 10:17

Right, you're not usually very serious, exactly. 

Nick: 10:19

And so I went back and I listened and I'm like, yeah, we did kind of go back and forth, but it was in a playful way, it wasn't arguing. 

Amy: 10:28

Even if it was like we're just, but what? 

Nick: 10:30

better. What better thing to do than display that we can have good communication talking about communication on a podcast with communication? 

Amy: 10:39

Exactly my point. So yes, we. Sometimes we go back and forth and we disagree. That is normal. It's totally good. And that is totally healthy. And I think the last one I wanted to share is that, if you already you already know this, but me and Nick have completely different love languages and I really just hope that spouses know that they can be different. They can have different loving languages, they can have different drives, they can have different communication styles all those things. You can have an amazing marriage by having opposite love languages, etc. 

Nick: 11:18

Minds changed in the past night. Do you know what my new? 

Amy: 11:21

love language is starting today Uh huh Quality time. 

Nick: 11:28

Just a cool touch. 

Amy: 11:30

It didn't change. Anyways, that's all I wanted to share. 

Nick: 11:34

No, that's good. That's good. We appreciate listening and, like Amy said again, we're not perfect. We make mistakes. If we say things on the podcast you don't agree with, that's fine, that's okay. 

Amy: 11:53

It's like when you go to lunch with a friend or another couple and you're just like. I totally disagree with that. 

Nick: 11:58

It's okay, it doesn't matter. 

Amy: 12:00

I'm still your friend. 

Nick: 12:01

In the world today we have so much division and it seems like the world like if you don't agree on something, all of a sudden you can't be friends, or, oh, I can't listen to that person, or I can't associate with that person because they feel differently about this than I do, and it's so ridiculous. 

Amy: 12:18

It is ridiculous. 

Nick: 12:19

That's what makes everything so good, is that we all are different. We have different personalities and different perceptions and we came from different backgrounds. So you're not going to agree with some of the things we say, and that's okay. 

Amy: 12:32

But you know, yeah, just kindly write us an email and let's talk about it, right? 

Nick: 12:38

Yeah, or don't even worry about it. If you don't agree with this, then you don't agree with this, and that's totally fine. You got to realize that we've had different experiences in our life. We've had different upbringings, and likewise with all of you. So, again, we love sharing just the experiences that we've seen other couples have, that we've had. That's the whole point. We're trying to do is help people in their marriages. 

Amy: 13:04

So yeah, all right, trying our best. 

Nick: 13:06

Trying our best. Well, I really like the podcast episode today. I think you know sometimes, well, look at our podcast. I mean we dive into. I think I'm not bragging, but I look at other podcasts out there and I think you know everyone is so surface like, oh, let's just talk about sex or let's just talk about this or whatever. One of the things we've really tried to do is to really dive in a lot deeper, because that's I mean, you know, talking about different personality types or just things that hopefully a lot of other podcasts I don't think are covering, because those are big things that really do affect intimacy and relationships. But today's podcast episode, we ran across an article and maybe all of you have heard about the article or read articles like this, but I hadn't, and I thought you know, is this something we do in our relationship? And, if we have, how has it affected us? And it's called the two, two, two rule, which couple say is the key to a happy marriage. And what the two, two, two rule is is talking about how you need to do a date night every at least every two weeks, a short getaway every two months, a long getaway every two years. And I'm going to add one more to make it the two, two, two, two rule. I think sexual intimacy, sexual intimacy two times a week would be ideal. Can I add that in? I'm okay with that, I think that's healthy, yeah, and so you know they say that couples that do these things and again I added in the third one, but I the fourth one, but I think that's important you can decide if you want to keep that in or not but couples that do these things have happy marriages. And we got thinking about that. There was a time in Amy's and Maya's marriage where we never did date night. 

Amy: 15:05

And we, well, we didn't have babysitters, we had no family, we had no money. I'm like I couldn't even imagine paying for dinner or something, movie, whatever the date was plus a babysitter. Like that was way out of our budget back when our kids were little, Like that was hard. So so yeah, I think that can be tricky and when you don't have someone you trust or family or like a close friend that can watch your kids, that can be. That can be hard too. But I think that we get stuck on the fact that date nights have to be out, they have to cost money. There are ways to have a date night at home that don't cost money. It's all about intention. After your kids are in bed, you can actually make it different than every other night of the week. 

Nick: 15:55

For sure. So Amy and I weren't doing date nights, we weren't doing you know night away or short getaway. We weren't doing vacations. The only thing we were doing, maybe, is making love twice a week. But the point I'm trying to make is, like I can see, our marriage really struggled. Or we went through some tough things and I remember I think you came to me and you said we need to start having date night, right, I think I might win you or did I come to you? I don't remember who came to who, but we got, we got together and talked and said, look, we really need to start making date night a priority. We never get out, the two of us. And I remember we started doing that on a weekly basis and noticed really quickly, like within a month or two, like we're like, wow, this is right, really creating a huge positive change in our relationship because we would actually get out, we would talk, we would connect and we'll go through all the reasons why it's so important. But for us in our relationship, Like we can attest that, it made a big difference pretty quickly. But we also went from never doing it to saying, okay, we're gonna do it religiously on a weekly basis. And here we are, 21 years into marriage and I would say we never, ever, miss a date night. In fact, sometimes we'll even do two day nights or a date lunch or whatever. But we're a little bit different too, because we spent a lot of time together and we love spending time together. We might like there's a lot of couples. It's amazing how they just they really don't wanna spend that much time together. They have different hobbies, I would say, and our relationship anyways, like we really enjoy spending time together. Doesn't mean we don't get away and do things separately, because we do, but we're really best friends and we enjoy being together and I would rather be with Amy than go out and be with another friend or something. 

Amy: 17:54

I agree. So, Date night's huge and, like I said, if we're covering that right now, it's about intentions, about doing something different, and I think the way that you keep marriage from being just mediocre is by keeping it exciting or having things to anticipate. So we start our work week on Monday and it's back to now. We're back in school, but school stuff, running kids, dinner, work, like just that everyday kind of tasks, and I don't know how people get through their work week without having something forward to looking forward to right. 

Nick: 18:37

Yeah, like by Thursday night I'm like, oh, it's almost Friday. It's almost Friday, it's gonna be amazing, it cannot wait till date night, like. 

Amy: 18:42

Our kids are like literally five o'clock every Friday night. They're like bye. 

Nick: 18:46

We're out. 

Amy: 18:47

See ya, and that's a great day. When your kids are old enough to just to leave them, that's a great day. So look forward to that. I think we have to look forward to things all the time, and especially in marriage. And if you're not looking forward to date night, then figure out why. 

Nick: 19:04

So Amy brought up a good point too. Like we were very, very poor, we didn't have a lot of money. That's one of the reasons we didn't go out. If you're listening and you're saying, well, we can't afford to go out once a week, or we can't afford to do a short getaway every two months, or we can't afford to do a vacation or whatever, there's always a way to do things. Date night does not have to be going out and spending a bunch of money. If you don't have the money, go like Amy's. Am I Hiking? Yeah, go hiking. Go build a fire, go just on a walk or go do something together. Regardless of what it is. A date can be virtually anything that you're doing, that you're spending time together. One of the things we did for a short getaway overnight is we would have a family member take the kids for the night and Amy and I would be home alone for the night, right Like we didn't have to go somewhere. 

Amy: 19:59

Oh yeah, we just stayed home. 

Nick: 20:00

Get a expensive hotel. My point is if you really want to do these things, you can find a way to where you really can't make any excuses. There are ways to do this and I also want to bring up the point sorry, I'm kind of talking a lot, but I also want to bring up the point that, just like, like I said, we dive into so many details in our podcast, but if there's one podcast that if all you did is did these things, this would help so many other aspects of your marriage. If you have a marriage that you're struggling with communication, or you're struggling with, maybe, sexual intimacy, or you're arguing a lot or whatever you're struggling with uniquely in your marriage, if all you did was apply this 2-2-2 rule or the 2-2-2-2 rule into your marriage, if that's all you did, I promise you you will see your marriage change in a good way. A lot of times we often think, oh, I got to do all these things to make my marriage better. If all you did was apply this one podcast, this 2-2-2-2 rule, into your marriage, you would see so many aspects of your marriage change, because Amy and I, some of the issues that we were facing in our marriage had nothing to do with this 2-2-2 rule. They were financial, they were other issues, but it was amazing how this improved so many aspects. It didn't fix things, but it really helped a lot of things. Whew, I'm out of breath. 

Amy: 21:44

Amen. When it comes to the date night every two weeks, I'm going to disagree with that one and I'll tell you why. I think date night should be absolutely every single week and, like I said, I don't think it has to be going out. But whatever you consider date night which in our marriage we're like date night actually means getting away I still think there should be the other I mean it's the 2-2-2-2 rule so every two weeks. I still think that every week there should be intentional block of time just for the two of you. 

Nick: 22:25

Well, and you bring up a great point, because I would actually say that we follow more like the 1-1-1 rule, which is we have a date, one date night a week. We try to do. 

Amy: 22:34

I disagree with that, because a short getaway every two months, we do not do that. We literally do that twice a year. So for us, short getaway, which would be just an overnighter, yeah, but we don't do that that often. 

Nick: 22:46

We sometimes send the kids with your bomb or things like that. 

Amy: 22:50

Yeah, we need to do better at that one. It's not every couple of months, but I do really like that. I think if we would have implemented that. I mean, that's harder to implement, especially if you just don't have anywhere to leave your kids, like that's hard. But I think if you're doing the other three at least, or trying to do that one as often as you can, I still think this really works. But what I wanted to add and we didn't go on a real vacation to like year 14 or 15 of our marriage we just literally couldn't afford like a really awesome vacation like that without our kids, and they were young and maybe I had that anxiety of leaving them, whatever. I mean, it's hard to trust someone to just leave your kids when they're little for a whole entire week or whatever. But it has been awesome for since we did start implementing that. But it's interesting that when I look at these three things above the Make Love one that you added I did. 

Nick: 23:46

I totally added it. 

Amy: 23:47

I think that having regular date nights, getting away once in a while and keeping the relationship emotionally passionate is what is going to help create number four, which is to make love two times a week and that's remember. We're talking about our marriage Like, I think that's healthy, you think that's healthy. A lot of people do it more, some people that's too much. Whatever works for your marriage, but they have found I think a lot of studies have found that an average happy, healthy married couple is being intimate on average a couple times a week. 

Nick: 24:23

Yeah, that's the idea. 

Amy: 24:25

That's a great goal. That's a great goal. If it's not that much, if you are more than that great, don't listen to this, right, but so anyways, like those, those getting away and prioritizing date night and prioritizing that quality time together and that special time together is going to create a better sexual intimacy. 

Nick: 24:45

Well, I think the point you're saying too is, like in our marriage, maybe we don't do all these perfectly, but we're really good at two out of three or three out of four, right, and so if there's one of them that you can't do, like don't feel, like, oh, it's all or nothing. Like, oh, if I can't do everything, then it's not going to work. No, it's not all or nothing. Like, if all you did was had a regular date night every week or every two weeks and that's all you're able to do, it's going to benefit your marriage Absolutely, Substantially. 

Amy: 25:15

It is amazing how many people don't do date nights or date day, or just making a time during the week for quality time? 

Nick: 25:26

Yeah for sure. So I mean obviously one of the other things like Amy's talked about spending that quality time together and connecting. I mean, if you again you go back to when you were dating, you were going on date nights, you were spending that quality time together, you were really getting to know each other, you're rekindling that romance. You have to spend time together to rekindle your romance. That is one of the vital things of why the couples say this two, two, two rule is a game changer for their marriage. In fact, one of the couples they were interviewing actually was married. They got divorced, they got remarried and said we implemented this two, two, two rule and our marriage has just been fantastic. So here you got a couple that it didn't work or they got remarried. They've implemented this in their marriage and now their marriage is really thriving. So, and they they attribute to their marriage thriving because of this two, two, two rule. So, I think you know again, rekindling that romance is you have to have romance. I don't care who you are. If you have a marriage where you have to have well, you have to have both the emotional and the physical or sexual intimacy like you really do. And if you're not rekindling that romance, I mean it's just it's going to be a matter of time until that flame is going to die out. 

Amy: 26:51

Yeah, to talk about the getaway every couple of years and some couples can travel much more than that, which is awesome. There's something about getting away from your life with your spouse and going and doing something adventurous and romantic, you know, like your honeymoon. I mean our honeymoon was really cheap, we went to a cabin, but we still got it. I mean we left our normal lives and went somewhere and got that quality time right. That's what it's all about, Made some real intimate memories, and so what I think of like couples and we use this excuse for years, but I can't afford it. There's no way we could. If you, if you have someone that could watch your kids for a week so you can go do a real vacation, but you're like money. Now that's too expensive. We have found that there are some trips that for a couple of thousand bucks which might sound a lot like a ton of money if you're really tight but if you think about, okay, we're going to make a plan to, we're going to make a vision board like we talked about, and we're going to put this trip up here and it's going to be a couple of thousand dollars because you can find an all inclusive, you know, for a couple of thousand bucks, you know for a week or whatever. If you put that up there and you're like, okay, I, if we, if we do one less state night a week out, but we do it at home and we go on a walk and save that money, or we just cut this little budget here, or I mean, if you do the math like, you don't have to cut much every month. 

Nick: 28:24

Yeah, save up. 

Amy: 28:25

I mean make yourself a vacation, bucket or a jar and start putting some extra in there or cut back on what you're going out to Like they say Americans are eating out like ridiculous. They spend so much eating out, right Like nobody hardly cooks anymore, which I totally see that when we go out it's like like yeah a lot of people don't even like you can save so much money just watching those little things. And do that for your marriage because even though it's only a week and it it sounds like it's going to cost a lot, it is so worth it when you get there and just clarify when we talk about a getaway, we're talking about a loan, we're not talking about with kids, or? 

Nick: 29:04

no kids no kids, we're talking about a loan. 

Amy: 29:06

A loan yeah. 

Nick: 29:07

No kids. Yes, absolutely it's, it's funny too, because I think for a while in our marriage I was probably the one like, ah, we don't need to go anywhere, we don't need to go on a vacation, and when we did I had the most enjoyable and funnest time in my life. 

Amy: 29:24

And now I'm probably like, probably have an addiction, but there's something like going from parenting and being an adult to all of a sudden you're like it's just the two of us, we're, and we're somewhere really fun and different, and you almost be like teenager or like young marriage again. 

Nick: 29:38

Right, yeah, now it's like okay, my mind's always thinking all right, how do we do another, how do we do another one? Who can we get to tender our kids? You can't let it be a date I would say it's not an addiction, but it's it moved up so high on my priority list because I see how important like it is to our marriage and our relationship and how much joy and happiness like we both find in it. And it doesn't like we don't have to be going and doing crazy things, it's more just like you know, like Amy said, being together and you can go find a cheap ball inclusive to just go lounge around on the beach for a week or whatever you guys like. 

Amy: 30:14

It doesn't even have to be that extravagant. Like Nick said one time, I surprised him at Christmas. My mom took the kids for a few days and we just headed to Vegas, because Vegas is pretty close and you said it was one of your best times that we've ever had together, and it's not because we went far, it's not. And when it was, I think it was bad weather the whole time, and so we hung out and watched movies, went out like it didn't even have it. Didn't cost anything like a major vacation, would it cost? 

Nick: 30:39

It was like. It was like for two and a half days, right, three days max, and I'll bet you, I think we laughed, I think we went to three movies because we had a movie theater place next to us. The weather was crappy, we laid in bed a lot, we made love, we went out to eat a lot, like it was seriously like a vacation where we just lounged and did almost nothing. We was chilled and it was like so, just so much fun, like being together. 

Amy: 31:04

It's really just getting away together, though, and like rekindling that romance right. Yeah, you can't do that when, when you don't separate yourself from your life. 

Nick: 31:14

So obviously, we're talking about, you know, creating memories that you're going to be able to look back on. And we still look back on that and I say, man, that was one of the most enjoyable times I've ever had together. Obviously, you're building intimacy, you're you're connecting on a much deeper level and you're prioritizing up each other. When you, when you say we're going to make time for date nights and we're going to plan it, and that's going to look different for everyone. Maybe for some couples, planning a date night is like a nice restaurant and flowers and all the like. It's extravagant. And for other people, like us, it's just like, no, we're going to go out and hit a restaurant or a movie or whatever and have a good time, whatever it is, but it's it's prio. It shows that you're prioritizing each other. And I want to make a point too. This is really important for your kids to see this. Our kids, like Amy said, every Friday they're like oh it's date night, you guys are going out. They know we're going out and they see how important it is to us and how important that is in marriage and I I can almost guarantee that they're going to take that into their marriage and say hey, I saw my parents go on date night every night, every Friday night. This is something we need to prioritize. Your, your kids, really see that. I mean I've shared the experience of me growing up that I you know what I saw my parents do and what I saw my parents not do, and it had an impact on me, right, like I think, when we first got married. The some of the negatives were oh, I never saw my parents do this or do this or do this, and so when we first got married, it was like I didn't do those things because I didn't, I just never saw my parents do that Right. 

Amy: 32:50

So you, oh you, totally live from what you see. 

Nick: 32:52

It has a huge impact. 

Amy: 32:54

For sure. And then I think you brought up a great point adventure right, like going out and and you got to switch things up, though, because we just get bored Like everybody gets bored, like we need to, okay. So Saturday, nick surprised me. I had run the girls to do some last minute school shopping or something and got home and he's like hey, I know this is like totally last minute, but do you want to just leave the kids and let's go play nine holes of golf? And we don't do that very often, never. I mean, we did it every day when we first got married, but I totally miss it and he totally misses it. And instead of cleaning the house for a couple hours like we probably should have kept doing because there's always plenty to do we decided to just Go have some fun together, and it was an hour and a half, you know, you played quick, but it was just good to get out there, just the two of us, and it was spontaneous, but it was different. It wasn't just a we're going out to dinner again, we're going to go see a movie again, like it was fun to do something that we used to enjoy together. And I think that's what's important is to look back at the things that you enjoy together when you first fell in love and bring that back into your marriage. 

Nick: 34:06

Yeah, for sure Right. And I think these things too, it's so important by getting out on date night or getting a night away, it's amazing how much of a stress reducer it is, for sure Of just getting away, not having to think of those things, hopefully having conversations that don't bring up those stressful things. I think it's so important for that. And then also, like, just reinforcing the commitment that you have for each other, like, hey, I'm prioritizing our relationship, I'm prioritizing you. This is more important than a lot of other things we've got going in our life is just again just showing that you are committed to each other, committed to the relationship. Very sure, so I think you know we've talked about this before, but I think we'll just go briefly over it again, because I think a lot of people are like well, I know a lot of people are like that because we talk to them all the time, right, like well, it's just so. I mean, we have a lady contact, she's the other night, she's like yeah, it's just so hard to plan things, or, you know, get the kids, you know just whatever. Making excuses right. 

Amy: 35:21

I don't feel like it's hard. No. 

Nick: 35:25

So on your weekly date nights whether it's weekly date nights or monthly, or your trip, whatever, it is number one you have to plan it. If you don't plan it it's not going to happen, and for everyone planning means something different. I mean, I just know on Friday night we're doing date night. Nothing is going to get in the way of it. 

Amy: 35:46

I literally write my calendars out like three months in advance and it's on my calendar in red ink with a heart, every Friday yeah. Like nobody's touching that. And if our kids end up having a sports event or something that's really, really important, then it moves to Saturday night. And if Saturday night is taken by something that is like has to be there, which is not very often, but like I have to be at something or we have to leave town or something. Then we try really hard to put it somewhere else during the week, even if it's fast. 

Nick: 36:20

Exactly. 

Amy: 36:21

Even if it's fast make sure of it. 

Nick: 36:23

And planning it out, like I said, might be different for everyone. For us, planning it out is just saying we're going and doing it this night and then we decide where we want to go, what we want to do. I mean, maybe I'm a little more boring, but maybe shaking her head like you're definitely boring. 

Amy: 36:38

Well, I can just tell you that it's usually get in the car at 5 pm. Where do you want to go? I don't know. Where do you want to go? I don't know when do you want to go, I don't know why. Don't you come up with three options and then I'll pick? That's our Friday night routine right. 

Nick: 36:50

It's true, and even if this is where we struggle, even after 21 years, I'm like I'm not going to get in the car and say, babe, we're going here Like I, just that's just not my personality. 

Amy: 37:00

Sometimes women like that, especially if you know what their favorite place is. 

Nick: 37:04

Yeah, I've done it a couple of times. 

Amy: 37:07

Or I got us to romantic reservations, or we're dressing up tonight, or I'm taking you somewhere new tonight. 

Nick: 37:13

I'm listening, keep throwing. I'm listening, I got you. 

Amy: 37:17

It's fine. We're both pretty easygoing and we love the places that we love. 

Nick: 37:22

I know the next one is like just what we're talking about Be creative. I am not the most. I'm like Amy is a graphic designer. She's very creative. I am more of like the check off the box, whatever. 

Amy: 37:36

So it's sometimes it's hard for me to be creative. 

Nick: 37:39

Maybe I'm sometimes boring, but I think I don't know. I think we make a good fit. 

Amy: 37:44

Good Good news is I'm pretty low maintenance. That is true, and I don't really care. 

Nick: 37:49

You are totally low maintenance. But be creative, try to find some fun things to do. Like I said, our first state was go build a bonfire and take food out, and it was one of the funnest states we've ever done. 

Amy: 38:01

It was awesome Be creative. 

Nick: 38:05

Next and I cannot stress this enough and I've made the mistake in our marriage you have to unplug. You got to make a rule that, okay, we're not going to have our phones distract us, we're not going to be looking at emails and text messages. Wait, you made the mistake when I've made it before, where I pull out my phone and I'm dealing with work stuff or whatever We've all done that Unplug. The only time you should be answering your phone is if your child is on the other line saying your house is burning down or something's happened. 

Amy: 38:35

Or maybe they're hurt or something. 

Nick: 38:37

Yeah, that could probably be, good. Yeah, that could be. 

Amy: 38:41

Or they're not feeling good, or I'm a mom, so of course I'm like if my kid calls I'm bad at that Point is put your technology away. But we did have a talk with our kids. Before you judge me and be like, you take your phone and listen, talk to your kids starting day and night. Our kids know it has to be pretty serious for them to call us. 

Nick: 39:02

We used to go out with another couple and it was funny. 

Amy: 39:05

we'd be like they have eight kids. 

Nick: 39:08

One night their phone. They had like 10 calls from their kids. 

Amy: 39:11

Oh, it was literally every 10 minutes. 

Nick: 39:13

Yeah, it was a going thing that like next time we'd go out with them and we're like, all right, what's the over and under on how many? 

Amy: 39:18

times our kids call, we would literally like bet. 

Nick: 39:22

And they would answer every time. 

Amy: 39:23

So yeah, like just have your teacher kids that this is your time and this is good for your marriage and unless they really really need you like respect that time and respect each other's. Like go into your date night like let's not take our phones or let's put them on silent unless our kid calls and it's an emergency, like just I don't know. You can definitely set boundaries and I it's. I like the word boundaries, but a lot of people don't like the boundaries but, but still set boundaries around your date night and your quality time together. I think that can be really helpful for sure I like this alternate responsibilities. 

Nick: 40:01

I think we could do a better job of that saying you're going to plan this date night. I have no idea what's going on. You're planning this one and then I plan the next one. You probably know what I would be planning, which would probably be dinner. I need to just totally shock you and come out with something like crazy. Like go repel off the 400 foot cliff to a ledge that has a candlelight dinner. 

Amy: 40:25

No, please no. Next idea of an amazing night would be a 14 miler hike and then camp in the middle of the the. 

Nick: 40:36

No, we would throw a hot tub in there and then make it love. 

Amy: 40:39

The middle of the. 

Nick: 40:41

The canyon. 

Amy: 40:41

The canyon. 

Nick: 40:47

And then the final one is be present. Your spouse can tell when you're there or not there. Mentally, yes, if you're going on date night together, be present, be engaged, really be involved, being in good mood. 

Amy: 41:02

If you're in a bad mood, then push your date back to the next night when you can snap out of it. That's right. No one wants to go on a date with someone that's grumpy. 

Nick: 41:10

Well. 

Amy: 41:10

Makes never grumpy, and I'm usually never grumpy, so we don't have that problem. But we do talk to a lot of couples where that is a problem and so that's not going to be fun for anybody. You're going to get a hurt date night more than make it good, right? 

Nick: 41:23

That's right, and then I would probably add another one. I heard a wise person say every time you have date night, it should have sexual intimacy in your date night. 

Amy: 41:35

What you did not hear, that I did, I did. Do you make you heard it from yourself? 

Nick: 41:39

I don't remember who the wise person was I heard it from, but I just remember it being really profound. 

Amy: 41:45

Okay, well, that doesn't really work in our house. It actually works better like different nights of the week when our kids go to bed early, because now that we have teenagers, friday nights, they don't get home too late. They hardly ever happens after date night. And that's you just got to roll with it Like okay, it's not going to work tonight. But, Because, it's a romantic night. I love you. We can cuddle. Sometimes that's not going to happen. 

Nick: 42:09

For what I'm saying is for some of you couples should. 

Amy: 42:12

That aren't waiting up till. 

Nick: 42:14

That aren't waiting up till after midnight, that you know you should. You should get ready for intimacy as well. 

Amy: 42:22

And don't get me wrong, there are plenty of times we've done it at midnight, but sometimes, when you're exhausted and you fall asleep trying to stay up for your kids, it's just it's better to save up for a night where you're excited. 

Nick: 42:33

For sure. 

Amy: 42:34

Right. 

Nick: 42:35

So our challenge to you over the next, let's say, couple months is follow the tutu-tu rule Let us know, email us and let us know what impact, if anything, has had on your marriage. We really want to hear. So hopefully in the next couple months we can get a bunch of emails saying, yeah, this really impacted our marriage, or, hey, we were already doing it, or, you know, maybe it hasn't made a difference, whatever. But, we would love to hear from you. That's our challenge to you over the next 60 days. Try to follow the tutu-tu rule Eliminating, I guess, or excluding, the long distance trip unless you have some planned. So let us know how it works, what you think, how it's helping your relationship. 

Amy: 43:21

Yeah, and if you need to plan a fun trip for next year, that's right. 

Nick: 43:27

We do have a fun trip for next year. Exactly, you should be putting that on the books. Yes, it's very affordable. The intimacy and adventure retreat March, I think, 21st to the 24th, in St George, utah. As we've said before, if you've never been here, it's probably one of the most beautiful and just different, incredible places in the world. I mean, we have people traveling here from all over the world. We have Zion National Park close. 

Amy: 43:55

It's red rock desert Gorgeous If you see the pictures of Utah with the red rock, like I mean, the arches is pretty close, zines is close. We don't have a state park five minutes from us. That's like gorgeous. 

Nick: 44:11

Yeah, it's just the. 

Amy: 44:13

Grand Canyon is close to us. It's so beautiful yeah. 

Nick: 44:18

We call it the intimacy and adventure retreat because we combine everything. We're going to do some activities, fun things that you will probably a lot of you will probably never do ever again in your life, which are incredible, and then, like Amy said, just beautiful area and also some great instruction from Greg and Julie Gorman, with married for a purpose and Amy and I will be talking a little bit at the end as well and question and answer. So, yeah, check it out, let us know if you have any questions. At ultimateintimacycom slash retreats. Love to see you there. We're capping it out at 25 couples and let us know if you have any questions. So we hope you enjoyed the podcast and until next time, we hope you find ultimate intimacy in relationship.