Walking around the neighborhood has become one of my favorite things to do. I’ve always loved hiking nature trails, and I try to get out for a run several times a week, but this walking is different. Walking – not necessarily for exercise – but for “pleasure” – with my husband has provided a richness and constancy to this relationship that I would not have expected from this one simple routine.

Our family is similar to many nowadays where business, school and home-life are all under the same roof. So, naturally, we spend a lot of time in our house. It’s a pretty productive, fun environment. Of course, there’s a certain level of mess and chaos that needs continual taming, but overall, it’s manageable, especially as the kids grow older.

Inevitably, though, after lunch or before I start fixing dinner, Don and I will lock eyes, noticing the busy ticker-tape of the other’s mind, and one will ask, “Want to walk?” I can’t remember a time either of us has said, “no.” Sometimes it’s for 10 minutes, sometimes 45 or longer, but it’s our time to connect. The kids mostly stay on task at home. We talk through business deals, cash-flow, future opportunities, relationships, and our kids, of course. Sometimes, he has to take a phone call, but we still keep walking; as his partner, it’s valuable for me to hear. I love offering insight and different perspectives when I understand the circumstances, and I treasure hearing his own.

The world always feels bigger once we walk out the door and see the big, blue sky or run into people passing by.

And we always feel refreshed, like we took one big, deep breath by the time we return back under the roof.

I’d recommend it to anyone – priceless way to connect with your spouse. Even if I don’t get a chance to walk around with Don, it’s worth it to go out walking alone to think, recharge, or talk with a friend on the phone. Simple, yet always meaningful.

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