For it was not into my ear that you whispered, but my heart; it was not my lips that you kissed but my soul. ~ Judy Garland
Do you remember feeling that way about your partner… newly in love, excited and passionate about each other? Maybe you’re fortunate enough to still be in that state. You know how to give your relationship the attention it requires. If not, would you like to get back there again? We have tips that can help.
Renewal is commonly seen as a process of improving, repairing, or making something more successful. We’d like to look at renewal as a welcoming in of Springtime after a long winter… and a freshening up of our relationship. It is easy to slip into bad habits … perhaps not giving your relationship the time or attention it requires. It is not uncommon to get busy with work, family and other outside obligations. Before you know it, your relationship is shoved a notch or two down the priority list or, in some cases, totally ignored. Over time you get used to the status quo until one morning you wake up and the spark is gone… or at least hidden from view.
Many people feel that a good relationship should not require work. It should simply be. This is not true. Relationships require attention, much the same as a beautiful garden. Untended, a garden can quickly become full of weeds and insects. With a little attention, it can once again be beautiful and flourish. Our relationships are no different.
How do we freshen up your relationship… improve, repair, and make it more successful? Here are some simple steps to a thriving relationship.
- Check your frame of mind. This is key. Do not judge your desire for improvement as a bad thing. This will only cause worry. Instead, look at this as an opportunity to refresh and upgrade the quality of your relationship.
- Talk to your partner in a positive way, sharing your desires. Don’t start the conversation with: I’m not happy or I want more from you. Instead, recall a fond memory and share how it made you feel. For example: Remember when we use to take walks by the lake after dinner. You used to hold my hand and we’d talk about our day? I love that. I love our special time together. I’d love to start doing that again. What do you think?
Be open to alternative suggestions. This conversation is about connecting. Maybe your life circumstances have changed. Perhaps you now have children. Make room for adjustments. Maybe you take a walk pushing a stroller. Or maybe you can cuddle on the sofa and talk after you put the kids to bed. The point is having special time together in a way that works for both of you.
- Be careful not to place blame or use generalizations like always or never, e.g.: we never go out any more. Instead, make a list of all the things you love to do together. Then talk about how you could re-incorporate some of those things into your life. You might even write each idea on a slip of paper, fold them and put them in a jar. Pull one out on free days and do whatever the slip of paper suggests.
- Take responsibility for what you can do to improve the relationship instead of pointing the finger at all the things your partner should do. Think about the things you’ve let slip. Did you use to make dinner? Tell your partner how much you cared? Give compliments? Look at them with loving eyes? Smile when they looked your way? Hold their hand? Plan special weekends or date nights? Do those things again. Everyone wants to feel loved.
Renewing your relationship is a matter of focusing positive attention on it, keeping the love alive. Give your partner your full attention. Listen when they talk. Notice what makes them happy. Make it a point to bring a smile to their face. Open your hearts to one another and allow the love to radiate out. The Winter is coming to an end. Enjoy the Spring.