Much like a weight loss program, it’s easy for the romance in relationships to plateau. Couples get busy conducting the symphony that is life--deadlines, homework, soccer practice, car payments, grocery shopping, etc. Without proper nurturing in place, partners can lose interest in the “glue that binds” if they feel they’re being taken for granted, their basic needs are being unmet, or worse, they cease to see themselves as lovers all-together.
In my work as a relationship coach, I’ve repeatedly observed that coming unglued intimately in a marriage can lead to “roommates syndrome” where two people are simply coexisting, managing the logistics of life, rather than thriving as a love-unit (yes, I just made that word up). With that said, I’ve created 5 romance nurturing techniques designed to help you dust off your love-unit (see what I did there?), and start becoming the thriving power couple of your dreams.
1. All About Timing
If you’re struggling to keep up the passion in the bedroom, you may want to consider your timing. We are all busy in today’s world so the end of the day, that is, right before bed may not be the most sexually charged time for a couple. Come up with some alternative windows that allow for a little body-to-body contact. Upon waking? In the shower? Keep in mind romance and passion don’t mean sexual intercourse exclusively. In reality, for a lot of couples (especially those with kiddos) time to ravish each other sexually for hours is rare. Sexual intimacy, however, doesn’t have to be. Remember when the relationship was new? I bet you made time to hug and squeeze and nibble and caress each other then. Don’t underestimate the power of a good long kiss...and a sexy ass grab.
2. Explore Different Environments
This may take a little work but I promise it’s worth it. Take to the outdoors. Go for a walk together and talk about all things sexy and romantic. Think back to your dating days and how just talking about making out or making love would raise your sensual spirits. Book a hotel room. A nice one, where you can both escape the everyday tasks that fill the never-ending to-do list and just be lovers. Or light up the candles, slather on the silky sheets, crank up Marvin Gaye, and turn your ordinary bedroom into a love den for the night. Okay your turn, what other environments would inspire you to be playful or frisky with your partner?
3. Set Up a Pre-Arranged Romance Plan
Have you ever heard of a drip marketing campaign? It’s where a business sets up an automated plan to reach its customers on an ongoing basis to keep them interested in their product or service. You get where I’m going here? Instead of having to come up with new sexy-time ideas every week when your mind is in work or parenting mode (because when is it not?) take a page out of the professional marketing book and pre-arrange little things to “touch” your sweetie consistently in an effort to keep them interested in romance. Maybe come up with a dozen bigger gestures (one for each month) and a half dozen smaller ones that you can rotate through the year. Here are a few ideas: Flowers, date night, a massage, a poem (it doesn’t have to be written by you), and lingerie -- for HER. A tech gadget, a tie and/or pocket square, a sexy photo of yourself, a massage, and a invitation to be pampered -- for HIM. You know your lover best. What would make them feel special and acknowledged as a sexual being? Do that. Do it consistently.
4. Topics of Conversation--Hot or Not?
When we get into a groove of managing life’s challenges we tend to talk about what’s not working and, consequently, solutions to our problems. Not sexy or romantic. While those conversations can be very productive and necessary, they don’t often lead to love making. I’m certainly not suggesting you stop communicating about the issues that you face, they need to be expressed. But what might get stirred up if you brought light, playful, fun, intimate conversation to the table as well? Can you think of a topic of conversation that’s laced with romance and desire that interests you both? You may have to get creative here or curious. The point is this, all work and no play (conversationally) makes for a less-than-romantic relationship.
5. Become a Curious George
That little monkey is always getting into something! His curious spirit takes him on adventures big and small. He has a wonderlust that keeps him constantly learning new things. Now imagine how applying that same curiosity to your intimate relationship could reengage romance. A common trap we all fall into is resigning to “know” each other. We think the person we’re with is “this way” or “that way” or we assume there’s nothing more to explore so we give up trying. It doesn’t have to be that way. If you adopt a Curious George perspective, new opportunities for romance open up. To put it simply, “thinking you already know” shuts things down. Being curious opens them up. Plus, it’s way more fun!
I challenge you to try on one or two (or go bold and tackle all 5) of these techniques this week. Running a business, meeting deadlines, tending to the house and bills, and rearing the kids is super important. And so is romance...it’s the glue that binds an intimate partnership. If you take action now (and be consistent) you can prevent it from drying out and crumbling.