Remember those early days of your courtship when we professed our love freely and did wonderful, thoughtful things for each other?
But then, as time passes, we slowly stop doing those wonderful things and we grow complacent. We can even take each other’s love for granted.
It’s time to regain that loving feeling
According to Harville Hendrix in Getting the Love You Want, doing those activities that make your partner feel loved is vital to maintain a thriving relationship. This is especially true if you are having troubles as a couple.
He calls it “re-romantizing your relationship.”
Here’s a look at his exercise that can help you do just that.
Supplies you’ll need: Both partners, pens and paper
Activity: Spend some time writing out a list of things that your partner currently does that make you feel loved and cared for. Once that’s complete, rank your entries according their importance to you, with 1 being most important and 5 being the least.
Then create another list of things you wished your partner did for you. Don’t include items that are conflict areas (for example, if money is your core issue, try to refrain from writing, “I wish my partner would buy me diamond earrings.”) Some ideas could include: rub my feet, take me dancing, give me compliments. Once that’s complete, rank these entries like you did with other list.
Come together as a couple and share your lists with one another. Then exchange lists. Commit to doing some of the activities your partner outlines. Pick easy ones first… then challenge yourself. Try to do one activity per day over the course of one month.
You’ll be surprised by what happens
These little re-romanticizing gestures can be surprisingly powerful – even when your partner knows they’re coming. I think it has something to do with feeling heard and honored.
Doing these requested things for each other may seem contrived or forced but you’ll be amazed at how well it works! It doesn’t even matter if you don’t “feel” like doing something for your partner, do it any ways.
Give it a shot and reap the rewards
Learn more about IMAGO and find a therapist at: http://gettingtheloveyouwant.com