Our culture is saturated with unrealistic depictions of relationship, love and family. From overblown movie romance scenes, to highly exaggerated expectations about sex, romance and beauty.
The media is bombarding us with ideas that are the exact opposite of what works in marriage. When people’s expectations for what marriage or relationship entails are overblown, they get disappointed and discouraged. Successfully married couples have a more realistic idea that marriage won’t be ideal, and mutual love and partnership are things that you need to work on, to build over a number of years. If you are loving and caring of each other without unrealistic sentiments, you have a better chance of success in your relationship.
From the moment you begin to live together, those happy romantic moments are no longer automatic. Instead, much of your time together is spent on more mundane things like, paying bills, going to work, doing laundry or washing dishes. Although this can be new and exciting at first, as soon as the initial newness of living together wears off, such everyday things stops to feel exciting and romantic, and you may find yourself feeling bored and worried that your partner no longer cares as much. All this are normal, but the good news is there are so many ways to put your love life in check and increase closeness.
Intimacy is the art of making your partner feel understood and accepted. When this feeling is created, barriers fall. To reconnect, be sure you are listening to each other and understanding your partner’s needs. The most powerful thing you can do to keep a marriage strong is form a team, where both parties feel cared about, respected and needed.
Commenting positively on your partner’s day activities, eye contacts, gentle touch, right words and a gentle sense of humor all create the atmosphere.
2. Make recreation, play and fun a priority
A playful approach will motivate both you and your spouse to want to be close. Humor, pleasure, silliness and leisure activities, are ways we renew our energy, restore our hope and connect with each other. Never allow too much of your time to be absorbed by mobile phones, tv, computer games, or other people who are not important.
3. Don’t get unrealistically focused on appearances
Don’t let our youth-obsessed culture rob you of the pleasures you can still have. Focus on how you feel about your partner, not on appearance, weight issues, baldness or lack of performance ability. You can happily have sex with each other into your dotage, if you learn to love your partner the way they are and not just about appearance. Growing old together means we will eventually show our age.
You may no longer be beautiful people, but you can have a lot more love, sex and fun if you are comfortable with your inevitable changes.
4. Develop “signals” that work.
Develop love signals like bringing home flowers, dressing up, a certain touch or phrase.
Sex is a physical form of communication, and like all other communication, it requires some time. Don’t just jump into bed and “get it on”. Allow time for quiet conversation, sensual touch. A “quickie” can be lots of fun, but the fun disappears if it becomes your only option.
Keep in mind that what feels romantic or sexy differs for men and women, so include cues that work for both of you. Many couples find that watching erotic or romantic movies helps set the mood.
6. Try some surprises
You could be showered, scented, and dressed in something you know your mate will like when he or she comes home from work, and make your move. When they work well, surprises can add some excitement and energy to your sexual relationship; but don’t do this frequently so it doesn’t get boring. Don’t forget to bring home flowers, send cards, create or buy silly little gifts for each other. Write poetry, silly notes, or songs, simply speak the positive things you feel.
Make reservations at a romantic spot, and have a quiet dinner out. Because it’s a surprise, build some flexibility into the plan, and make sure the plans would feel good to your partner, not just to you.
7. Revisit memories of your early days together.
Do a crossword puzzle, play your favorite love songs, rent an old, romantic movie and eat popcorn. Cook your favorite foods together. Visit places like the restaurants where you had your first date, the park where you met, the romantic hideaway spot where you had dates.
Revistingyour early dates can rekindle the early feelings.
8. Don’t let your expectations get out of line.
Intimacy or fun do not depend on going to extremes or spending money and they don’t have to take a lot of time. Enjoying yourselves is an internal process. You can be sitting and talking about interesting things or experiences, working together in your garden, playing with the kids or the dog, singing, dancing or playing a board game. Through play, we re-connect with our hearts, our childlike selves, and spontaneous responses that lead to sexual connections.
You can create intimacy with special occasions, something that requires a bit of advance planning; but when you look back on your most intimate experiences, they are more likely to have been simple rather than expensive and elaborate.