Losing the “spark” in a long-term relationship is something that is bound to happen, but right now when times are uncertain with the world, it’s even easier to happen.
Those of us who have gone through isolation and lockdown with our other halves will feel it even more. During normal times, we’re conditioned to desire the act of falling in love, but not the act of keeping love. Have a think about it: how many soppy films do you know of that start after the wedding and go through the mundane parts of everyday life? Hardly any! We’d probably all fall asleep watching it if so!
Although that “spark” we all hear about isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. I feel there is something super comforting about someone who makes you feel peaceful, instead of all giddy and nervous. In fact, I think I’d be more insecure right now if I felt all butterflies-in-my-tummy everyday.
That being said, keeping your relationship fresh and exciting along with having that little bit of a spark is important for keeping a forever relationship from turning into ‘just’ a friendship. Take a read of some ideas to be aware of if you’re worried the this is happening to you guys…
Make an effort to try new things
Relationships can easily grow stale when habits and routines start becoming the norm. Therefore, think about trying something new to see your partner and your relationship in a different light. Perhaps you don’t see each other’s competitve streak enough, in which a games night together just the two of you would be a great idea. Perhaps you don’t see each other’s creative sides, in which doing a life drawing of each other (ooooh!) or learning an instrument together could be fun.
Try working out together
Maybe your mornings usually involve taking on some form yoga practice or meditation, while your other half hits the weights or goes for a run.
Although it’s key to do thinks seperatley, why not try to do a work out together? It could even be an uphill climb together if you can find a hilly walking route, or a game of badminton in the garden. You can find lots of online classes on the internet which let you practice zumba, pilates or even 10 minute arm workouts, which could be something different to try together!
Working out together not only boosts playful competition (extra motivation and flirtation!?), but exercising releases endorphins, which could help you deepen your emotional connection and feel more in touch. It could do wonders for both of your moods!
Communicate an emotion that’s not “I love you”
“I love you” is undoubtedly one of the most important things you’ll ever say to each other. In fact, an “I love you” a day keeps divorce papers away (just kidding, but not really). However, odds are it’s something you tell each other often, whether it’s before hanging up the phone or falling asleep. The phrase might not register the same feelings of admiration and connection that they did back at the beginning, so communicate emotions that are not love, like gratitude, appreciation, and admiration. Try “I’m so proud of you,” “I’m so grateful for you,” or “You mean so much to me.”
Go underwear shopping together
OK so this is way more fun for the girl, but you can extend this to cover the man, too! Plus, the whole thing should be an enjoyment to him, too! Try not to be embarrassed, as it should be a fun experience to be buying things together. Plus, underwear shopping is something that many couples do all the time, and it’s nice to pick out some pretty sets you can wear for your alone time together.
You can do this online, by simply having a bit of a date night together and grab the laptop/iPad and start having a shop. It’s fun to see the difference of tastes, too! Look at items like lace underwear, frill knickers, garters, mesh stockings and even corsets – it depends how risque you wish to be!
While you’re shopping for new underwear, you could look at throwing in some nice extra items for a romantic night in together, like scented candles, oils, and lotions.
Plan an extreme activity
When was the last time you both did something together that was scary and got you both feeling afraid/overly excited/anxious? There are so many activites the two of you can plan which will bring new emotions.
Climbing one of the highest mountains – like Scarfell Pike – one weekend. Looking at local bungee jumps or indoor skydiving. Going for a swim in a secluded lake out in the countryside, when you know it’s a little ‘wrong’. Or, what about something further afield, like travelling to a country none of you have been to before that involves lots of trips, like Thailand or even Australia?
On the other hand, there are some smaller, little ‘tricks’ you can do to evoke a new emotion or reaction from your partner. You can try being a little more flirty with your friends and try flirting with a girl in his company, which may bring on absolute shock!
One of you is probably the main cook of the relationship (and the other is the dish washer), or, perhaps one of you never lifts a finger.
This weekend, try cooking together. Everyone loves and appreicates food, but you’ll love it more if you cook a three course dinner together! Have one of you pick a starter, the other a main, and together you can decide on the dessert. It’s a great chance to work together, and cooking can get stressful so it will really test you both!
Think of ways to do it, like giving your significant other the chopping duty while marinade meat or boil veggies. Think about making something that will be fun, instead of something that may turn out to be a disaster! After all, you want to both enjoy eating it afterwards!
Do one thing that you want your partner to do
Remember that when it comes to relationships, you have to create what you want, not wait for it to happen. There’s nothing worse than expecting your other half to be a mind reader. After all, if you want your partner to be more romantic, then be more romantic yourself. Monkey see, monkey do, right?
Too many couples spend too much time moaning to others about things their partners don;t do. If you’re cut up you never get gifts, start doing small gestures and buying little gifts for your partner. Make things become a habit, set a standard.
And if all else fails, make sure you tell theme exactly how you feel!