You may have heard that long-term relationships eventually and inevitably become flat and boring. Many people believe this idea to be true, which is unfortunate because it’s not. At least not according to many long-term married couples (including ourselves) with whom we’ve spoken, The danger in believing something that isn’t necessarily true is that in doing so you are likely to act accordingly and risk creating a self-fulfilling prophecy. Getting to be right about something isn’t always a good thing.
While it’s not unusual for couples to experience periods of time in which feelings of passion, desire, and attraction ebb, rather than flow, this is not an indicator that something is wrong or that it’s the beginning of a permanent flat-line. What it could mean is that the needs of the relationship have been neglected, and it is in need of recharging.
Fortunately, this is generally a pretty easy fix and with a little help from each partner, passion cannot only be restored, but can be elevated to an even higher level.
While it is impossible to prevent stale moments from ever occurring, it is possible to strengthen the substance of a relationship in a way that diminishes their frequency.Keeping your relationship fresh, passionate, and alive—whether you’re 20 or 90—just requires infusing things with more fun and pleasure.
A contributing factor to a loss of passion can be a pattern of withholding difficult truths out of the fear. The antidote to that one is simple: get honest!
But if this isn’t the case, then it’s time to put some more pleasure into your relationship. Finding the time to do this isn’t easy for those of us with busy lives, but it is possible when the motivation to do so is there. The motivation often comes when we get honest with ourselves about how we’re losing “that lovin’ feeling” and what the consequence will be if we don’t do something about it. Now.
We always have enough time for the things that are on our priority list. The problem isn’t about sufficient time; it’s about priorities. Many of us assign a higher priority to commitments other than our relationship, not necessarily because we don’t value it, but because we may take it for granted. We have a false belief that we can afford to neglect our connection.
We may assume that since we’re committed, our relationship is solid and doesn’t require the attention it did in the early days. It’s a big mistake to take your partnership for granted and assume that it doesn’t require the same kind of care that it once did. If neglect continues for too long, the results can be disastrous.
It’s not unusual for couples to take for granted what we used to appreciate. After spending several years together it is easy to slide into a state of complacency and relate to each other as roommates, business partners, or if we are raising children, co-parents. While it is important to fulfill the obligations of our other roles and responsibilities, if we override the lovers’ aspect of our relationship, we run the risk of denying ourselves and each other the essential elements that are needed to keep love alive and fresh. And there are some clear cut ways to do that.
Stay tuned for Part 2 for the Twelve Ways to Keep Your Relationship Passionate.