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The Top 10 Ways to
Keep Passion in
All long-term relationships go through a variety of
phases. There is the initial dating and courtship and infatuation period. If
the relationship continues, it settles into a more stable time of building a history as a
couple. If children enter the picture, that is a new phase. Later, there is
another phase of being together as a mature couple with the wisdom of experience.
We all know that it is possible to keep passion,
romance, excitement and sexual intensity alive through the years, but we also know that
many relationships settle into a kind of friendly (or not so friendly) roommate situation.
Every relationship has its ups and downs, but there are tools that can keep
passion perking right along. Here are 10 of them:
- Be kind. Im writing this
on a cruise ship and its fascinating to watch people grouch at their spouses, then
turn around and share a friendly smile with a stranger. We tend to take family and
best friends for granted. A smile, a wink, just a moment of kindness goes a long
- Be attentive. Paying attention
to the details of life is important. Pick up your own trash, and pick up for each
other. Put things away, help each other with the small projects around the house.
These things are the currency of love.
- Be gracious. Small surprises
can create huge rewards in a relationship. I think of it as the "Martha Stewart
Effect". Taking a moment to put on a clean shirt before dinner, or using the
good china, or cutting a flower from the garden and putting it on the table, are examples.
All these things add color, spice, and graciousness to our lives.
- Be patient. We all have bad
days. It happens. When it happens to your spouse, be smart! Take the
kids to the park for an hour, order Chinese take-out for dinner. Give him/her a
break! This is the reality of life. Allow for it.
- Be honest. Tell the truth about
your feelings, and do it promptly and in a respectful, effective way.
disappointments and fears, but also share dreams, hopes, and gratitudes. Keeping
secrets kills passion.
- Be funny! Life seems to have
supply its own stress and worry, but we have to provide the humor on our own. Share
a joke, take time to tickle each other or rent a funny movie, and do it often. The
couple that laughs together, often does other fun stuff together, too!
- Be flexible. Over a lifetime,
people change. Hopefully, your relationship will change and grow and mature with as
you change. One of you will change careers, the other will change religions.
One will have an illness, the other will make a mistake. Relationships either bend
and flex with the winds of life, or they break.
- Be generous. Ive saved
the best for last. After a survey of dozens of couples, the big 3 items that showed
up over and over began with "give little gifts". Surprise each other with
flowers, candy, a card, or other gift. Do it often. Do it for no particular
reason. Do it because you love each other and thought it would be nice to show it
with a gift.
- Be available. The second of the
"big 3" was "take time for each other". Schedule time to walk
and talk, go for drives in the country, go to dinner and see a movie together.
Dozens of couples ranked time together as the most critical component in keeping romance
and passion alive.
- Be physical. This is about
sensuality perhaps more than sexuality. Couples talked about the importance of
scents, of candles and flowers and walks on the beach. They talked about making
love, but mostly they talked about back rubs and holding hands, and creating memories.
They talked about getting dressed up and going out, and they talked about
skinny-dipping. They talked about being playful and finding their own way. You
can do this!
Someone has said, "Life is what happens while
you were making other plans." Romance is about real life, not about dreams and
fantasies of the perfect partner, someday on a Pacific island. Romance and passion
are about taking time to enjoy the company of the person you love. Have fun.
Do it today!
Phil, Mary, and the Staff at
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© Copyright 2003 by Philip E. Humbert. All Rights Reserved.
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