In order to meet success, long-term relationships do take work. Many couples share in the sense that their relationships lack fulfillment after a period of time. While turmoil in any relationship is part of the course, long-term feelings of neglect or a lack of desire are not.
The secret to keeping love alive is in putting forth the effort that you did when love was new.
Indeed, partners often wonder why their relationships fail, where those loving feelings have gone, or why they feel under-appreciated by their partners. This generally happens after the “honeymoon period”. In some cases, couples may not experience this sense of loss for years. But what about the couples that never seem discontented, whose displays of admiration for one another are apparent even after decades of marriage. Indeed, they are doing something right. Happily married couples with a long history together, have managed to preserve some of the elements that were present while they were in the early stages of courtship.
Consider the time when you and your current partner were dating before things got serious. Though you had a lot of fun, you were probably putting in a great deal of effort to keep them interested. What were those things you did differently, and how does the past compare with the present?
Is romance necessary in a relationship?
Romance is one of the most crucial elements to happiness in relationships. Many partners do not really know what romance is or how to implement it. Understanding why romance is so crucial is a necessary first step to those interested in rekindling love. But what are the little things you did to get his attention, to keep him interested, to win him over? We’d be willing to bet those things are no longer happening. We often do not realize how much work we were putting in in the beginning, nor do we notice our decreased effort, and how that can lead to an emotional breakdown and stagnancy.
So what is romance and why is it important in a relationship?
Generally, romance includes one or more of the following:
- Small actions that convey affection, adoration, thoughtfulness, and love
- Activities or actions of novelty-actions executed for no other purpose than to enhance feelings of joy and connectedness
- Class – activities or events that add a touch of high living.
- Any actions which bring a couple closer or show thoughtfulness and adoration
Romance needs to be a normal and necessary part of our lives. And the truth is there are no secrets to romance – you need to know what works for your partner; what makes them happy and apply them as often as you can to sweeten your relationship. Sustaining a marriage demands work, cooperation, and commitment. A couple is already accustomed to these things but marriage does not have to be all about ‘hard work’. You are in a marriage because, at the bottom line, you love and cherish your partner. When you decide to use romance to enhance your marriage, you decide to use it as a tool to show that you care, that your marriage and partner are worth the effort. These small acts collectively will make your relationship stronger, healthier and make it last longer.
How to rekindle or add romance in a relationship
Years after marriage there are couples who still struggle with the idea of how to be a romantic in a relationship. Creating romance in a relationship becomes easy when you become mindful of the below:
Created through experiences that bring partners closer. This can be brought about through acts of affection, gift-giving, reminiscing, meaningful conversation, laughter, and intimacy.
Romance should be a joyful experience; and is often reflected through enjoyable activities such as going to the movies, the carnival, attending parties together, or playing games.
Humor is a major element to most romance. Couples with a good sense of humor will enjoy cheesy adages, funny greeting cards, comics, and laughing at the absurd.
Being together a long time, couples are able to share memories by reflecting on the past. Going through old photos or revisiting past hang-out spots can bring back old feelings and thus, enhance bonds.
Sex, romance, and relationships, all go hand in hand, sex in romantic relationships is integral to its health. Introducing new elements into your sex life, or simply engaging in sexual activities more often, will certainly increase romance. Although romance may lead to intimacy, intimacy and romance can fuel one another.
Spontaneity – out of the ordinary activities that promote a sense of adventure, such as hiking in the woods together, getting “lost” on a drive, or doing something taboo- like visiting an adult book store- are great ways to create romance through the adventure.
Romancing your lover should convey respect and reciprocity.
Romance invites appreciation, likewise, appreciation will create the impetus to initiate romantic activities with your partner.
Involves strong feelings of enthusiasm, and joy, and powerful or compelling feelings of love and desiring.
Romance feeds the elements that comprise a loving relationship. Without it, desire and adoration for one another will almost assuredly fade, rendering the relationship dull and mundane. Understanding the importance of practicing romance in your relationships will add spark to your love life, prolong feelings of connectedness & result in your ultimate happiness for years to come.
Here are 10 everyday romantic ideas to try:
Now that we have established that romantic relationships are important, here are some everyday tips and ideas that can help you become more romantic:
- Get your spouse a wristwatch. Inscribe it with: “I always have time for you.”
- Buy a lottery ticket. Give it to your spouse with a little note that says: “I hit the jackpot when I married you!”
- Write “I love you” on the bathroom mirror with a piece of soap/their lipstick.
- When out in public, wink/smile at your spouse from across the room.
- Ladies: Send your hubby a letter sealed with a kiss.
- Send your spouse a trophy for being the “World’s Best Lover”? Wink, wink.
- Pick flowers for them from the side of the road.
- Don’t just go out to a movie on Saturday. Call your spouse from work on Wednesday and ask for a date. Best way to perk up a dull week.
- Have “your song” playing on the stereo when your spouse returns home from work.
- Cook together.
Kelli Hastings is a writer, social worker, and proud advocate for women. She earned her B.A. degree from the University of Oregon in 2007, and worked as a behavior support specialist and program manager. She is inspired to support couples, teach them skills that lead to healthy, happy and romantic partnerships. Her interests include cognitive behavioral therapy, mindfulness, visualization practice, and related therapies.
More by Kelli H
Restoring Emotional Intimacy
How Can I bring Romance back into my Marriage?
A How-to Guide to Being Romantic in a Relationship
Five Contemporary Intimacy Exercises for Married Couples
Essay on Importance of Relationships
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