There is nothing quite like the way a new romance feels, right? The faster heart rate, the giddiness and excitement we feel when going on dates or first-time experiences with a new partner. Those first weeks, months, and even years, the excitement and attraction are effortless. But like many couples, you settle into a routine after some time and life gets in the way, snuffing out the romance. So, how do you keep the spark alive in a long-term relationship?
10 Ways to Keep the Spark Alive in a Relationship
According to Tony Robbins, learning how to keep the spark alive is possible after kids, if you’re a full-time entrepreneur, in a long-term relationship or if you don’t even see your partner every day. For many relationships, any of the above can be the kiss of death on romance, but it doesn’t have to be!
Here are some tips from the experts that we can all use to keep the spark alive this Valentine’s Day (and every day)
- Give more freely. The secret to living well is giving! When we give of ourselves or give thoughtful gifts whether it’s Valentine’s day or not, we’re showing our partner we’re thinking of them and that they are a priority.
- Plan special surprises and getaways. Be spontaneous! Do something together you love, or try a whole new experience. Maybe you’ve both talked about skydiving, getting away to a lake house cabin, or dining at that new café in town. Whatever your whim, block out that time and just go! Make it a surprise or have fun planning it together.
- Take time to touch and be physically affectionate with each other. A kiss, a hug, holding hands or a soft touch on his or her shoulder lets your partner know you’re fully present for them. Make eye contact often. According to positive psychology researcher Barbara Fredrickson, making eye contact produces synchronized releases of oxytocin. This surge of “love hormones” make couples feel a burst of emotional connection associated with empathy, trust, sexual activity, and relationship-building. It is sometimes referred to as the “love hormone,” because levels of oxytocin increase during hugging and orgasm.
- Sleep Naked! Sure, we all want to stay warm and cozy in those flannel PJs, but take a few days per month to sleep naked with your partner.
- Your olfactory senses (sense of smell) can be a very powerful spark for memory and A few spritzes of a favorite sensual scent you used to wear can bring back memories of the beginning of your relationship. Or spark a sensory response with a new signature scent. Many women swear by Victoria’s Secret body spritzes to spark immediate response and romance.
- Jenn Gunsaullus recommends taking time every month for an intimacy “check in” with your significant other; “Are you both feeling connected? Is your sexual love bucket filled? Are you getting the physical closeness you need? This isn't a time to blame or shame, but to each share about your needs and wants in a responsible way. If there is a discrepancy in desire, choose one thing to each focus on that month to commit to nipping the concern in the bud.”
- Plan weekly dates – it doesn’t have to be an epic adventure every week, but you should make it a priority to spend one-on-one time together.
- Turn it up a few notches on your sexy-meter. Wear a lacy black bra underneath a white blouse, an alluring skirt with thigh highs or anything that makes you feel sexy! Splurge on sexy lingerie or a new hair style. It’s a known fact that when we feel beautiful, confident and sexy, we radiate that energy outward.
- Leave the laptop and the phones away from the bedroom and on silent!
- Find out what your partner’s Love Language is and become an expert in speaking it! Learning what s/he needs to feel loved and appreciated will take your relationship up a few notches.
“One big way to express gratitude is to be of service to each other—not just when they need you to help them or to accomplish something in the relationship, but on an everyday basis in a very personal way. What does your partner need individually to help them be their best?” - Abigail Brenner, MD
So often we find ourselves caught up in the daily grind. Carving in that time to create memories or make intimate time for each other will be crucial in keeping the romance spark alive. After all, it’s really about reconnecting and remembering what brought you together in the first place.