We’ve all been there. Love is in the air and forming a long-term relationship is the most natural thing in the world. You’re both excited for the future and what it may hold for your new union. After many months – or even a few years – of navigating life together however, that “butterflies in the stomach” sensation has worn away, leaving you feeling disenchanted and disconnected in your relationship.
At first, couples often shrug off such feelings as a part of life, thinking that this must simply be the way things go with long-term relationships. Fortunately though, it doesn’t have to be that way. Rekindling the romance in your relationship can not only stoke the spark between you and your partner, but lead to a greater emotional and physical bond between the two of you that can last a lifetime. Here are eight actionable tips couples can take to get the flames of a long-term relationship flaring once more:
1. Spice Up Your Routine: Just like a script in a play, most couples eventually find themselves hurting from the lull of their own routine. Instead of sticking to the same habits and schedules day in and day out, take time to switch it up without fail. If you always grocery shop hot Sunday afternoon? Try waking up a few hours earlier than usual and go on a Saturday morning. Does a night on the couch watching a movie sound fun? How about instead, taking a stroll in the park after dinner or doing something unfamiliar? Even small changes like this can give your connection the reboot it needs by allowing you to experience new things together.
2. Leave Room for Spontaneity: Connections don’t happen when couples are slaving away at a plan. Once every now and then, leave room for spontaneity to creep in - schedule free nights where you just do whatever comes to mind. Doing spontaneous activities together not only presents opportunity for more adventure and creativity, but gives your relationship a breath of fresh air.
3. Rinse and Repeat Compliments: Everyone likes to receive compliments, and your partner is no exception. Take the time to compliment your partner daily and repeat past compliments if the opportunity arises. Appreciating them for the same virtues will not being annoying - but rather serve to remind them of just how special they truly are.
4. Get Involved in Activities Together: It’s easy to become accustomed to lives that keep you and your partner living parallel to one another rather than walking together side-by-side. Finding an activity you both enjoy, and getting involved it it thoughtfully is one of the most romantic ways to make your partner feel cherished. Gardening, painting, bird watching, swimming, cycling; anything will do - as long as you both take pleasure in it!
5. Pay Attention to Small Details: After spending a considerable amount of time with each other, couples naturally become a bit lax about the details. While playing close attention to your partner’s behavior can sometimes be a challenge, it’s still incredibly important to recognize the little things that make him or her uniquely them. Whether it’s a morning ritual of crossing the street when jogging or a preferred order at the local diner, appreciating your partner’s preferences whenever you can will show them that you value their presence in your life.
6. Make Time for Intimacy: Couples typically prioritize physical or sexual intimacy within their partnership. Unfortunately this distraction often deprives them of much richer physical contact. Holding hands, cuddling, massages, giving your loved one an unexpected kiss on the forehead - these are all examples of gestures that express passion, love and trust in a far more intimate manner than a traditional kiss or embrace. Making time to engage in this type of contact with your partner often connects you on a more meaningful level both physically, and emotionally too.
7. Have Fun Together: One of the main contributors to the lack of spark in a long-term relationship is forgetting to laugh together. Having fun and laughing - not only at jokes and funny situations, but at ourselves, our own flaws and mistakes - is necessary to maintain a healthy and lasting connection. So don’t be afraid to loosen up and participate in goofy, ridiculous activities together; anything that allows your inner child to come out and play is sure to refuel your relationship.
8. Try Something New Together: Trying a new experience together introduces a deeper level of emotions for both partners. Taking an adult cooking class, joining an intramural sports team, indulging in a weekend yoga retreat, traveling…there are no shortage of possibilities. When talking about a long-term relationship, it’s essential to inject novelty into the mix to prevent boredom; and the only way to do that is by experimenting with unfamiliar things that you and your partner can do together.
Reigniting the romance in your long-term relationship requires effort and determination, but ultimately it comes down to understanding that it’s always worth the effort. Nothing comes easy, especially relationships - and that’s why it’s so important to put in the extra work to foster a good, healthy connection that lasts over time. Put the tips above into practice and soon enough, you’ll be marveling at the passion reborn in the ties that keep your relationship going.
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