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How to Refresh your Relationship with your Partner

August 25th, 2013

d9d72e7a6e0b42b2a2e8f9fecf8af5f4Ah, love. It ebbs and flows, sliding between the cracks in our lives, as we dash from one appointment to the next, hair or clothes askew and slightly flustered. Keeping up appearances, matching the Jones’s, and maintaining a clever veneer of “we’re all okay” can take its toll on a relationship, as romance is de-prioritized in favor of pressing commitments and the demands of the day.

You’re no doubt comfortable with the ways things are. They feel welcoming for some reason; a proverbial arm chair you can just slump in, enjoying glasses of wine and snippets of banter. While this shroud of peace may be genuine, a healthy relationship is a continual process, often neglected for auto-pilot and once a fortnight sex.

Question. How does one get out of a relationship rut they didn’t realize existed?

Small changes go a long way!

Communication

I’m sure you’re bored of magazine articles and TV spots highlighting the importance of positive communication. Fair enough. But are you clearly communicating with your partner, or do you get a case of the “yeah, yeah, yeah”s half way through and tune out, dismissing their chatter as unimportant?

Ladies, every time you speak to your partner, invoke how you feel and share that feeling. Prompt his memory and ask him to put down his gadgets. And put down yours as well. By removing distractions from your paths, your focus can be on what the two of you are saying.

Guys, be responsive. We know that sometimes it can be difficult for some of you to talk about your feelings. Society tells us men aren’t supposed to be sentimental or sensual. Remember how frustrated you are when you ask her what’s going on and she snaps, “Nothing, I’m fine.” Yes, she’s being evasive, but her reaction could be socialized, not irrational.

Both of you remember to listen like you mean it and engage with the person who loves you. And keep in mind you both may need time to absorb and process this new piece of your relationship. Don’t expect immediate answers or demand some kind of perfect resolution.

That First Date Feeling

You met him. He flirted with you. You played hard to get or laughed as he put the moves on. The days were fun-filled and lighthearted, winding down into long balmy nights, where Naughty but Nice scenarios played out. It was new territory, exciting, tantalizing, but who has time for that anymore? You can’t surprise each other, or so you think. Cohabitation erased any semblance of spontaneity long ago.

Well, that’s one way to look at it. Regain those butterflies (or thundering magpies) and make time to woo each other all over again. It doesn’t have to be fancy, although a weekend away wouldn’t hurt. It can be as little as a romantic note, a well-timed compliment, a surprise dinner (home-cooked and researched) or a new leisurely tradition, sleeping late on Sunday morning, or taking breakfast in a quiet, mutually selected nook. Get your groove back together.

Whose Fault Is It Anyway?

Nobody likes an ugly grudge. Holding on to past slights and resentment of sins served or unserved will do your sanity and relationship no favors. Instead of re-directing blame, and holding fast against any kind of accountability, it’s time to be honest with yourself. What actions led to the moment or moments of tension, and how do your actions affect other people?

A rational adult will step back and reflect on their own part, apologizing for any damage caused and accepting that their partner disagrees, without trying to invalidate their position or belittle their feelings. A loud voice and a harsh manner does not make you anymore correct or superior.

This is a guest post written by Jessica Hannah. Brought to you by Naughty but Nice!

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