Quality-timers… what can I say? We despise the distraction and drain of technology, we enjoy conversations with our significant others, and we love hearing the phrase, “I decided to stop playing my game because I want to spend time with you!” We feel worthwhile to those who spend time with us without coercion. ~smile~
Two people I talk about every now and then on PreEngaged are my Granny Jones and my mentor, Miss Betty. Both of these ladies have had a profound effect on my life and I am so thankful that God placed me under their tutelage. Perhaps what made them shine in my heart all the more was their ability to tune out the rest of the world when I needed to talk to them.
Granny loved company. She watched TV for the noise, but if a visitor came by she offered her full attention to her guest. She was so affirming. Her face lit up when I came in the door, she laughed at my jokes, and she had a way of making me feel like the most important person in the world. When I was at her house, I knew I was home. I dearly miss that precious lady.
Miss Betty has the gift of hospitality. Her home is always so warm and inviting, and over the past twenty-five years or so, she has spent many hours listening to me. Even though she had real, adult problems to tend to, she made time to focus on me when I was a kid, which is probably why I spent so much time visiting (read: bothering) her. ~smile~ Even today, she grins, swings open her door, and invites me in for a good conversation.
Recommendations for Showing Love to Your Quality Timer
Your quality timer may not want to be the life of the party, but he or she does want to be the life of your party. When you are spending purposeful time together, be sure to concentrate and focus on him or her. Going to a restaurant with a lot of hanging televisions is not conducive to the time together that he or she is going to want.
Plan Dates which involve a lot of Quality Time
You may love to go the movies, but does that spell quality time to your sweetheart? If not, don’t cease to go to the movies, but plan pre- or post- activities where you can focus your time and attention on each other. If your honey likes spontaneity, plan a few picnics or other “out of the ordinary” dates where there are few distractions ( though some distractions, such as other people being nearby, is a good thing if you aren’t yet married. ~wink~).
Schedule Regular Quality Time into your Week
Date night is like dessert for quality timers. Just knowing the date is coming is something special to look forward to. “Sure, work was rough today, but I got through it just knowing I was going on a date with my sweetheart tonight!” We can get through a disappointing meal with a smile on our faces just knowing that a yummy dessert is coming next! If your quality timer knows when your next date(s) will be, he or she will have the security of knowing it is coming and the anticipation of the fun that is in store!
Quality Time when Your Sweetheart is Insecure
If your sweetheart is experiencing some self doubt, or going through a rough transition, you can be a big help by spending quality time with him or her. Maybe her parents are going through a divorce and she is devastated. You won’t be able to take all the pain away, but your presence and availability to her will be priceless.
If your boyfriend is at a crossroads and he has been pushed away by some guys he thought were his close friends, you cannot fill the void of the lost friendships; however, you can offer him support as he picks himself up and moves on with life. Even if he does not want to talk about it, he will appreciat
e you just being there with him.
Don’t Complain about the Time Spent with Your Sweetie
Don’t throw your “time sacrifices” in your sweetie’s face. If he or she asks to hang out with you but you are tired and feel like you have spent more than enough time together, resist the urge to say, “I’ve spent all this time with you! What more do you want from me?!” Though it is not feasible to spend every waking hour together, there are less hurtful ways to explain your point.
Gently let your sweetheart know that you have a lot you need to get done and let him or her know you have enjoyed the time you have spent together – and then plan for the next time you will spend time together. This way you are not blowing off your boyfriend or girlfriend and he or she can look forward to your next quality date.
Learn to Speak Quality Time Fluently
Quality time can be easily misunderstood. Because romantic couples tend to spend a lot of time together, the non-quality time speaker may think his or her sweetheart’s needs are being met. The quality timer, however, may feel just as empty at the end of a day together than he or she did at the beginning.
Quality time is defined by the one who needs it. While one quality timer may feel loved when her boyfriend sits and watches her favorite movies with her, her quality time brother may not feel loved unless his girlfriend is talking to him with no distractions. Find out what quality time means to your honey and learn to speak it fluently.
Let’s say you and your quality timer are going on a date to your local pizzeria. Here are a few key ways to make the date meaningful for a quality timer:
- Resist the urge to watch the television behind your sweetie’s head. This is annoying and insulting. It says, “I know you are sitting in front of me, but the TV is far more interesting.” It is frustrating for anyone to attempt a conversation with the TV providing constant competition, but it is especially frustrating and hurtful to a quality time person.
- Keep your phone in your pocket. If you need to occasionally pull it out to look at the time that is fine; however, for 99.5% of the date, keep it put away. Even if you are talking to your sweetie about what you are doing on your phone, it is still a little pesky intruder in our eyes. The quality timer may be asking himself or herself (about you) “Can you not just enjoy being with me? Am I that boring?“
- Eye Contact Spells L-O-V-E. Look at him or her when you are having a conversation. Ask questions. Make comments. Be engaged in the discussion. If no conversation is forthcoming (perhaps you have been together all day and you are all talked out), find a game to play while you wait for your pizza. My mother and I used to play Hangman on the paper napkins and I loved it!
- Come Prepared. So you know that your girlfriend has been struggling with a friend who is constantly accusing her of not being there for her. This has been an ongoing issue and you know it is on her mind. Instead of waiting for her to bring it up, ask her how it has been going and listen to her talk about her feelings (Side note: Guys, resist the urge to try to fix it and just listen. If after you have listened to her you want to give her some advice, ask her if she would like some, but don’t be offended if she does not want it – she may just needed to get the words out of her mind. ~smile~).
Ladies, you know your man has been going through a lot at work due to a forceful boss with unrealistic expectations. Ask him about how work is going, and unlike the conversation above, your man may appreciate a few suggestions about how to handle the situation (though wait until he is completely done – don’t interject your advice giving while he is sharing his circumstances with you). He may not take your advice, but at least you can dialogue about it. If your honey would rather not talk about the topic at hand, have a handful of other topics to bring up that are specific to him or her.
Have a Post-date Plan
It may seem like you have done your duty after a date to the pizzeria where you stayed focused, left your cell phone in your pocket, listened intently, and discussed topics important to your honey. At the end is where you can potentially squash all of your efforts.
Don’t get in the car, take a deep breath, and think, “My work here is done.” If you make a quick switch from caring and attentive to ignoring and preoccupied, it will not end well. ~smile~ Have a plan for after you leave your official date destination. Even if all you have time to do is drive your sweetheart home, continue to make the time together count. You should not be looking at your phone while you are driving anyway. ~smile~
Most people enjoy quality time with those they love, but for the ones who speak quality time it is a need.
In my marriage, I have noticed a significant increase in my desire to cook, clean, and write after Eric and I have spent time together. When we go a significant time without a date or a good conversation, I feel irritable and I lose my desire to please him. Such is a symptom of mine of an empty love tank.
Check Your Each Other’s Love Tank
Whether your sweetie needs quality time or any of the other love languages, it is a good idea to routinely ask, “How full is your love tank?” A full love tank tends to show on a person’s face and definitely in his or her actions… and so does an empty love tank. When you run out of gas in your car you cannot move forward, and when you run out of love in your love tank, your relationship cannot move forward. So keep those tanks full! ~smile~
What are five quality dates you can plan for your sweetie?