Following the excitement of the festive season it's all to easy for couples to get the January relationship blues. Luckily, relationship Coach, speaker and author of Relationship Remedies: Relating Better to Yourself and Others, Sam Owen, is here to help you get back on track.
So if you've lost the spark at home or are struggling to sizzle in the sack, here's how to steer your relationship back on to the romantic route...
1. Commit to spending time together
All relationships require ongoing nurturing, some of which comes from spending quality time together. A few weeks spent apart won't matter much but if you spend most weeks living separate lives, you will begin to drift apart. Spend quality time with your partner every week. Stick a specific date and time into your diary for a 'date night' if you need to. That 'date night' could involve a night at home over a candle-lit dinner or a day at the museum or time spent in the park playing crazy golf. Be creative, mix it up and make it achievable on a weekly basis.
2. Be simple in your intimacy
Simple intimacies should be utilised on a daily basis, e.g. holding hands, putting your arms around one another, cuddling, and looking affectionately into each other's eyes. Closeness and intimacy are linked to good health and longevity and are vital to the success of your relationship.
3. Communicate, communicate, communicate
By communicating our relationship needs, fears, wants, likes and dislikes, we give our partner the ability to honour these needs and we feel heard. Sometimes you may have to repeat your message several times before it is acted upon but if you never say what's bothering you you can't expect him to read your mind! Be open and reap the rewards.
4. Do things for your partner that you know they will appreciate
If you commit to doing things for your partner that you know will make them happy and make them feel loved, chances are they'll do things for you that will make you feel the same. Think back to how committed you were to doing things to make your partner happy in the early days of your relationship. Just because you've been together three years doesn't mean they don't still deserve the same attention to detail.
Do they like being fed specific home-cooked meals or being given a massage? Do they like a specific magazine you can buy for them as a surprise? Do they have difficult family members that you struggle to get on with but you know it would make them happy if you made the effort? Do something every so often, simply to make your partner happy.
5. Take responsibility for your own happiness
Couples can fall into the trap of expecting their partner to fulfil all of their needs. This can place an unnecessary burden on your relationship, kill the romance and increase the dissatisfaction you feel. Remember that you are still independent, still an individual. Be sure to maintain a healthy balance between doing things with your partner and doing things for yourself, by yourself and just with your own social circle. You will then appreciate the contribution your partner makes to your life more.
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