Are you wondering what happened to those loving feelings? You are still spending time with your partner, still doing things together, still sexually active, but just don’t feel the intensity of love and passion that you used to. What happened to it? Did something go wrong in your relationship? Do you have the wrong partner? Although those are often the conclusions that people have, they are usually not the right answers.
If you stop to think about it, you might realize that you have experienced this same decrease in passion in other areas of your life. Relationships with other people, hobbies, sports, and even your religion were probably all more exciting for you at first than they were after a while. Usually with hobbies, people end up giving them up when the passion is gone. Are we forced into either enduring our relationships or giving them up? Or is there another possibility?
Try these 7 steps to inject passion into your relationship.
1. SLEEP ONE MORE HOUR PER NIGHT. You will live longer (making up for the extra sleep time), be healthier, achieve more, and be able to focus on your partner. Fatigue damages sexuality, romance, and intimacy and takes the fun out of everything except sleeping.
2. MAKE LISTS. We live in a busy world with a lot of demands. Waiting for the demands to go away, or for the schedule to let up is not going to be your best strategy. Unclutter your mind by making lists. Shopping lists, chore lists, gift lists, whatever. Just like a backpack full or rocks takes the fun out of a stroll, so a mind full of demands and obligations takes the fun out of time with our partner.
3. SCHEDULE. The belief that things need to be spontaneous to be good is an example of a belief which limits your enjoyment. Change it. You and your partner can schedule a regular date night each week. Take turns deciding what to do rather than playing the ping pong dating question game (“what do you want to do..I don’t know, what do you want to do. . .?”). Schedule a regular time to be together each day as well, but don’t make it too long.
4. HAVE SOME QUIET TIME. Everybody needs some time for themselves, not just to do what has to be done, but for solitary play, enjoyment, peace, and reflection. When we don’t have those things, we tend to become more and more scattered and tired.
5. DO SOMETHING THAT EXCITES YOU. Having something that excites you in life besides your partner can make you more excited about your partner. It also will make you more exciting to your partner. Don’t use your partner as an excuse to not do what you want to do in life. Relationships are for sharing our lives with our partner–not for giving them up to our partner. What would that kind of freedom add to your relationship?
6. VARY YOUR ROUTINE. No matter how scenic the highway, it will become boring if you can only drive at 30 mph. Create a different kind of challenge in your relationship such as learning as a couple to dance, surf, camp, cook, or even start a business together. Don’t wait for retirement to have fun. Time makes us regret not having done more with others while we still could.
7. INTENSIFY IT. Normally give your partner a quick kiss goodbye? How about intensifying it? Get the rest of your body involved, kiss longer, more deeply. Ask your partner what would make his or her toes curl if you did it. Why not do it? You can have the same passion with your spouse that you could have in an affair–without the guilt and damage.
Waiting for your relationship to be more fun is like waiting for your shoes to jump onto your feet in the morning. “I can’t go out–my shoes haven’t jumped onto my feet yet.” Absurd, isn’t it? If your relationship is not fun, passionate, or intimate, make it that way. Have fun. Be creative. Shake it up. Enjoy your relationship. Just because you are in a long term relationship doesn’t mean that you have to act that way. Change the common idea that affairs are exciting and that marriages are dull into its opposite–marriages are fun and affairs are dull. We limit our behaviors more by our ideas than by any real world constraints. Learning to think in a different way means that we can learn to live in a different way.
If you are tired of your routine, there is a good chance that your partner is too. “I would like to make our relationship more fun and exciting, how about you?” is a good way to start that conversation. If that just won’t work with your partner, a relationship coach, like the AAA, can get you on the road and where you want to go.