When Mike and I met in college it was unusual circumstances. His sister was a dorm mate of mine and introduced us the first time. She gets credit for our meeting. However, we didn’t get to know one another until a year later in a business fraternity. It was lust at first sight and love at 2nd sight.
WHEN YOU FIRST MET – REMEMBER!!
It was magical when you and your spouse first fell in love. As a couple, we were so sweet, passionate and patient with each other. Staying out for hours, walking across campus or sitting in the dorm lobby, just getting to know one another. We talked about so many hopes and dreams. Because we connected socially, we had lots of mutual friends and hung out together a lot as a couple but also with groups. We would walk hand-in-hand and Mike was always there to open the door for me. Such a gentleman. After the honeymoon, we’d leave each other love notes in lunch bags or on the bathroom mirror.
15 Years Later
Fast forward through15 years and we’ve got so much responsibility. Mortgage, bills, kid, housework, 2 jobs, piles of laundry and meetings and the never-end to-do list. Maybe you can see yourself in our love story?
Has hand holding been replaced with pointing fingers? Conversation been replaced with silence or the TV or your phone? Connection been replaced with loneliness? We like to geek out about marriage so here are some powerful yet simple ideas to renew that passionate love you had in the beginning. But first, let me explain why this is important.
Dr. Gottman is the nation’s leading marriage researcher. And he suggests that couples hoping to spark romance need to turn towards each other even when they don’t feel like it. Yes, even when you’re exhausted or irritated. Friendship is essential to thriving marriages. In relationships that thrive, partners consistently make and receive what Gottman calls “bids for positive connection”.
The term Bids for Connection always sounds so clinical to me so what I think of is a bid in a card game. I’m trying to tell my partner what kind of cards I have so he’ll know what cards to play. Only with Bids of Connection, there are no secrets, I’m flat out saying, “Hey, I want your attention, will you give it to me?”.
15 Ways to Spark the Passion
- Schedule a next date night and keep the plans a surprise. The anticipation will spark a renewed sense of fun.
- Send flirty texts to each other throughout the day. Trust me, your partner will appreciate it.
- Make foreplay a priority. Make more room in your calendar to make out before sex.
- Be affectionate and playful with each other in front of others. It’s not enough to just brag to each other in private, it’s significant to compliment your spouse in public.
- Start a new hobby together. Brainstorm some ideas and create a list of shared interests. It doesn’t need to be involved, maybe just a new interest in the space program or learning a new dance.
- Show appreciation by saying “Thank you,” and “I appreciate all you do.” This goes a long way in showing respect to each other.
- Take a walk hand in hand. Nothing gets the blood moving and the connection juices flowing like taking a walk around the block.
- Focus on the positive qualities of each other by writing them down and posting it around the house.
Keep Going to Reignite Love
- Plan a vacation together – no kids allowed. It doesn’t even have to be extravagant, but time alone is so important.
- Dream together which helps build security. Have you created a dream board where you jot down your goals or things you want to do together? Go for it!
- Pay attention to your spouse more than you pay attention to your phone & TV. Less screen time, more face time.
- Reminisce about your favorite date nights, wedding day, honeymoon, and travels together by pulling out old photos.
- Buy a new board game and have a game night together. Clothing optional. “wink”
- Take a class together on something that interests you both – cooking, gardening, yoga
- Do something you did when you were dating. Go to the drive-in movie, how about bowling or pizza and a beer at a dive bar.
BONUS: Compliment your Spouse in Public – does wonders for them and for you!
You’ve got this. Just try one suggestion above this week and see how your partner reacts. You won’t be disappointed.