Have the recent bizarre years extinguished your energy for passion and romance? You wouldn’t be the only one to have found yourself suffering from a bad case of “flat-mate syndrome”. Maybe you’re even struggling to make conversation with the person you fell head-over-heels with many moons ago or getting down and flirty together is a distant memory.
Valentine’s Day is the perfect cue to invigorate your relationship with these strategies for the whole year to get that head-over-heels feeling back in your relationship. Don't just leave it at one day.
1. Complete yourself first
Check that you are head-over-heels in love with yourself first. Are you relying on your partner to “complete you” with fancy displays of adoration? Whilst many of us can be a total sucker for flowers and any form of romance any day of the week, a healthy contribution to the relationship is founded on a healthy sense of self first.
Both partners need to be resilient and open to constructive “feedback” from each other in a non-blaming way to learn and grow together. Only then can you enjoy a flourishing and dynamic relationship featuring someone wonderfully matched to the best version of you!
2. A grateful heart is a magnet for miracles
Seeking a divine miracle to transform your relationship? It is so easy to fall prey to a mindset that focuses on criticism and even contempt. Experiment with the gift of gratitude either together or for your partner by writing a list of your 20 favourite things you have loved about the other, then read them out loud. Your praise can be about anything from their appearance and achievements to their personality, hobbies or quirks. Including "intrinsic" words of affirmation benefits couples far more than just "extrinsic" praise (appearance). Be honest and glow with admiration for each other.
3. Go soul-gazing
Forget the cheesy stargazing and go “soul-gazing”. Face each other in a seated position. Keep your knees close to touching and hold eye contact for 5 minutes. Avoid talking, burping, gas emissions and welcome the awkwardness. Background music is optional. Once you've perfected this, experiment with other seated positions or lying down. Extended eye contact (with someone that you have positive feelings toward) is scientifically proven to increase feelings of connection and intimacy.
4. Get out of the comfort of your discomfort
Neuroscience reveals that we stay captive to unhelpful routine behaviours purely because it is easier to keep doing them versus risk something new. Now is the time to throw comfort zones out the window! Plan something completely novel to reinvigorate your routine, not just this week but at least once every month. Here are some examples: acting classes, soap carving, interpretive dancing, geocaching, square-dancing, basket weaving, noodling (either the musical or fishing type), nude model painting or pottery to the Ghost movie soundtrack? Life is too short to stay in the comfort of the lacklustre discomfort.
5. Love Coupons
This is where you commit to performing self-sacrificing acts for your beloved you might not necessarily enjoy. You write, “This coupon entitles the holder to ……(your partner’s choice), or one-foot rub, one evening in with….., a meal cooked for you, a night out with the lads/gals, King/Queen of the remote control, breakfast in bed, vacuum your car. These little things mean so much. They’re redeemable for any time until next Valentine’s Day, or you can add fine print with a shorter expiry date for those you’re hoping to get out of.
6. Be selfless to allow a selfish session
Take turns granting each other an intimate selfish session! When it is your turn, dictate to your partner your desires. It is your time, moment to moment chosen by you to be pleasured by your partner. Respect each other's boundaries but make it your mission to relish in and please each other.
7. Pump someone else’s heart
It is a sobering thought to imagine how many cannot celebrate Valentine’s Day as they’re fighting for their lives. No one has been untouched by a sudden accident or cancer in some shape or form. Why not donate some of your healthy platelets to those fighting the battle or a patient who may need it for surgery. Importantly, your brain will light up with happiness by spreading the love beyond your relationship, creating a ripple effect from the gift of your health and well-being!
Joanne Wilson is the facilitator of the Relationship Rejuvenator online mini-courses and author of Renovate Your Relationship – All The DIY Tools For Your Most Important Project ($29.99). Find out more at www.relationshiprejuvenator.com
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Joanne will be your Confidante, enabling you to speak freely in complete confidence and serenity. An integrated approach tailored to your specific needs will be utilised.
Joanne will be your Confidante, enabling you to speak freely in complete confidence and serenity. An integrated approach tailored to your specific needs will be utilised. Approaches such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Solution Focussed Therapy and Emotionally Focussed Therapy may be incorporated.
Relationship Specialist for Individuals and Couples online around the world and servicing areas for face to face sessions including Caloundra, Noosa, Noosaville, Buderim, Mountain Creek, Gympie.