Sometimes in relationships, once the initial phase of excitement and novelty have worn off, there tends to develop a discontinuation of affection which once occurred simply and naturally. As the mystery wears off and we become well acquainted with our lover and partner, we can drift into a comfortable space, sometimes resembling friendship rather than romance and passion. As with all things which are worth keeping in our lives, these aspects of relationship are important to nurture and develop so that apathy does not set in over time.
Wisely, some relationship theories advise that for intimacy and passion to remain alive with a relationship, we should display at least five “moving towards” behaviours for every one “moving away” behaviour. Moving away behaviours include conflict, criticism and blame. Moving toward behaviours include affection, warmth and appreciation. Behaviours which indicate “moving towards” might be:
- A conscious touch as we pass our lover
- A kiss hello after a day apart
- An offering of service, such as making a cup of tea
- Offering a massage or foot rub
- A compliment regarding a task completed
- Noticing and acknowledging an everyday chore
- Being self aware enough to acknowledge your “stuff”
- Making time to have a conversation about anything
- Bringing home a small gift (small may equal chocolate bar in many cases!)
All relationships experience some kind of disagreement or conflict, and that is both natural and healthy. It is part of the negotiation process and often can serve to enhance intimacy. Nevertheless, it is important to foster the wellbeing of the relationship during the neutral times. So while it might be easier to unconsciously flow through the relationship when there is little activity, investing in your partner and the relationship can really create increased compatibility and fondness. Find time to move towards your lover, reminding them of their importance in your life and your gratitude for their presence. You might be surprised at the positive affect this might have on your day to day living.