Living like roommates isn’t nearly as fun or interesting as passionate love – nor is it healthy for intimate partners – but romance is often the first casualty in the war of life. Stress, arguments, and basic biology deflate spontaneous passion and romantic love…but you can win the war even if you’ve lost a battle or two!
- Visualize your perfect relationship
What kind of partnership do you want? Who do you have to be – how do you have to change – to be half of that relationship? Visualization isn’t just about training for marathons or doubling your income, it’s powerful and effective in restoring intimate relationships as well. Spend a few minutes a day thinking about your perfect relationship. Share your thoughts and hopes with your partner. You may be together in the same house, but miles apart emotionally. Visualization can bridge the gap.
- Figure out your role
If you are living like roommates, ask yourself how you contributed to the situation. What would you do differently if you could do it over? Forget about how your partner has disappointed you: how have you disappointed yourself in this relationship? With a little soul-searching, you can figure out how you can show more love, kindness, acceptance, and compassion…which may lead to more love from your partner.
- Forgive and forget
It’s a cliché for a reason. If you hold on to grudges or betrayals, you’re just perpetuating the damage. Maybe he messed up, maybe you did…but ruminating and not letting it go just makes things worse. Talking to a counselor or wise friend can help. Even better, tell your partner that you’re having trouble letting go of your bitterness or hurt. Learn ways to forgive and let go – for your own sake.
- Learn something new together
Take a ballroom dance class or join a book club together. Do yoga or take a communication class at a local school or college. Not only will you learn a new activity or a new way to think, you’ll also learn something new about your partner.
- Remember what was once obvious
When you first fell in love, you focused on your partner’s strengths. You loved his determination and melted at his compassion. You overlooked the weaknesses (possibly to the detriment of the relationship or your self-esteem!), and concentrated on all the fantastic qualities.
The more you focus on his strengths, the more loving you’ll feel towards him. Think about why you were first attracted to him and be grateful for the good parts of your life together. Brush away the annoyances. A caveat: if the “annoyances” are major problems such as abuse, criminal activity, or other evil behaviors, forget about his so-called strengths and figure out how to get help with getting your life back on track!