The positive attributes of your partner transition into obscurity as that beach sun begins to set on your honeymoon phase. The new and exciting becomes normal, boring..ordinary. Sound familiar? At the same time, the negative attributes, some of which you didn’t even see before, wear on you the longer time goes on. This only leaves room for pessimism about the relationship to grow, often for years on end.
It’s the natural life of a relationship. Psychologists have found that over time, couples don’t just become more pessimistic about their relationships, they also become less able to correctly decipher the intricacies of their partner’s emotions, while they typically believe they’re getting better at it.
What can you do to combat this?
Tell Your Partner How Much He Means to You Every Morning
When you tell your partner how much she means to you in the morning, you’re bringing back the positivity that the honeymoon phase embodied.
You’re making him feel good, and encouraging him to continue getting better. That “general positivity” about the relationship doesn’t have to wane. All you have to do is be optimistic, and keep positivity in your daily routine.
Do The Gratitude Activity
My wife and I journal every morning. As part of that activity, we each name three things we’re grateful for about the other.
This can be anything from “I’m grateful that you made dinner so I could work,” to “I’m grateful you bought yogurt at the store today,” to “I’m grateful that your personality shines so bright.”
We do this, because:
1) It helps us realize the small, good things about each other. We try to amplify the positive aspects of each other and let the negative stuff drift into obscurity.
Recognizing these things will help us realize that those negative, nagging aspects actually are minor in comparison.
2) It helps the other partner feel appreciated, and who doesn’t like to feel significant? Like they’re making a difference to someone else?
When you feel appreciated, you have a more positive outlook about the relationship, about your day, about your entire life.
It also encourages your partner to reciprocate (though you should do this even if they don’t), which in turn makes you feel appreciated and recognized.
Do Something Thoughtful
Do something thoughtful throughout the day. It can be as simple as sending a cute note in a picture message, when your lover doesn’t expect it.
This fulfills three of the six core human needs, which exactly what it takes to create an addiction. Yes, your partner will be addicted to you.
Doing something thoughtful tells your partner that the romance, the spice, is there. It tells her that she’s doing a good job, when she might not be so sure. And, it tells you about all the great things she is and does, reminding you not to take her for granted.
The key to keeping the positive feeling of the honeymoon phase is appreciation. Even traveling and sunset after sunset can get boring, but when you can fulfill someone’s need to feel appreciated, you’re giving them a more positive (rather than neutral) outlook at you and at the relationship. At the same time, that appreciation can help you realize just how great a person your partner really is.
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