Tag Archives: romance tips

7 Ways to Create Sparks Every Day

Keeping the Romantic Flames Alive Series

Guest post by Lisa Shoreman

We’d all love to sustain that same feeling of butterflies in the stomach and excitement that we feel when we first start dating throughout our married years. Unfortunately, constancy and routine have a way of dulling those feelings, and other responsibilities can get in the way of making time for our partner.

Fortunately, with a few of these tips and a little time and effort, you can help revive those romantic sparks.

1. Start “Dating”

Take it all back to the beginning and start setting aside time to spend with your spouse – alone. Without the kids. Without the computers. Without the Blackberries. Do something fun and relaxing. Don’t use the time to talk about household matters or to take care of errands. Focus on each other. Go to a fancy restaurant for a romantic dinner. Take dance lessons together. Take a bike ride around the park.

Whatever you choose, be sure that you are not trying to make the time double for something else – such as exercise or taking care of chores. You can make your dates part of a regular “date night,” but be careful not to let those become something else that you have to schedule. You don’t want your dating to become another part of your routine.

2. Do Something Unexpected

Nothing kills romance faster than the same old routine. Part of what makes dating so thrilling is the unexpected – both in what you do and in the person you are with.  Break out of the dinner-and-a-movie routine and try something new. If you’re adventurous, maybe you can go parasailing or even bungee jumping. If you’re creative, try make-your-own pottery or go to karaoke. Mix it up with different types of activities.

Be unexpected in your daily lives as well. Flash your husband as he walks out of the kitchen. Surprise your wife by greeting her with dinner – wearing nothing but an apron. It doesn’t have to be sexy, just surprising. You can show up at your spouse’s office with lunch. Or come home with a movie you know your spouse will like. Even the little things can help break up the monotony.

3. Do Nice Things for No Reason

Wives have come to expect a dozen roses on Valentine’s Day – and maybe on your anniversary or her birthday. But what about sending roses when you know she’s having a bad week? Or just because you wanted to say you think she looks pretty today? Nice gestures don’t have to come with a price tag. Offer to cook dinner if you don’t usually do the cooking. Take the kids to a movie so your spouse can have a few hours alone. These gestures foster intimacy and goodwill – all of which will help you keep feeling romantic and loving towards your spouse.

4. Be Hands On

Foster physical affection through small gestures – such as a foot massage, or stroking your spouse’s hair while you lounge on the couch watching TV, or even just holding hands when you’re out in public. You don’t have to be groping one another constantly, but small gestures such as these can help foster intimacy.

5. Outlaw “Comfortable” Clothes

You don’t have to dress up every day you wake up, but it is a good idea to get rid of those clothes you’re still wearing that have holes, stains, and stretched elastic that you throw on to feel comfortable, but just make you look schleppy and maybe a little unwashed. Remember those days when you took care with your appearance and tried to look good for your girlfriend? Or when you always took care to put on your makeup for your boyfriend? Revive a little of that spirit and take care with your appearance. You don’t always have to look like you’re ready for your first date, but taking time to look nice will help keep your partner interested and keep the romance alive.

6. Create Sexy Games

Perhaps you like to role play in the bedroom. Or maybe you would enjoy exchanging naughty coupons. These fun games can bring a little sass back into your intimate relationship. Try creating a “code word” game: Think of a word that you can say, and whenever one of you says it, you have to kiss, or touch in some way, or make out. You decide the rules. Maybe you like to explore. Make it your “mission” to make out in every French restaurant in the city. Or every wine bar. Or every hiking trail. Mix it up according to your interests.

7. Laugh Together

Laughter is the best medicine in almost any scenario. Couples that laugh together have fun together and are able to be more intimate together. Even First Lady Michelle Obama said that the secret to the success of her 19-year marriage is that she and her husband can still make each other laugh. Remember to take time for one another, to not take yourselves so seriously, and to play.

Lisa Shoreland is currently a resident blogger at Go College, where recently she’s been researching types of scholarships as well as engineering scholarships. In her spare time, she enjoys creative writing, practicing martial arts, and taking weekend trips.

 Related Links:

Is Sex More Work for Women? How to get more participation, support and caring from your spouse. This article is from Psychology Today and says, “Giving to your partner what your partner needs is not an act of selflessness. It is enlightened self-interest.”

Especially for men–Can you learn The Art of the Throw Down from romance novelists?

New fact I read: Social Media has overtaken pornography as the #1 activity on the Web.

Photo Credit: ©SabrinaK/PhotoXpress.com

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For a Happier Marriage, Date Your Spouse

With the stress of daily life, work and family responsibilities weighing on you, Lindsey Rietzsch, author of How to Date Your Spouse, suggests changing your lifestyle will make your marriage more fulfilled.

Thinking back to before you married your spouse, there was a period of courtship. Each of you presented your best selves, groomed and dressed as attractively as you could muster. Chances are, you each listened more intently, tried to be funny, and in general were enjoyable to be around. Rietzsch says keeping these behaviors going is how you date your spouse. She breaks it down to seven factors:

  1. “E” for Effort—Arranging a special date night or focusing your attention fully on your partner shows effort. So does making sure the car is tidy, your legs are shaved, and you look your best.
  2. Earn Interest—Ask interesting questions; listen as if you are hearing your spouse for the first time. Look at things from his/her perspective. Appreciate your partner for who they are now. Be interested in your partner’s hobbies, job or interests.
  3. Ignite the Romance—Think about activities for your dates that allow you to be physically close, such as dancing, ice skating, swimming, taking a walk or getting a massage. A woman needs to be romanced and made to feel special. Hold hands, compliment your partner, and make time for intimacy.
  4. Dress to Impress—Make sure you smell good and look good, especially when you go out on dates. Maintain a healthy exercise regimen to give you self-confidence and energy. Wear something attractive to bed.
  5. Build Mystery—Plan some large or small surprises to keep your spouse wondering what’s next. Also, give yourself alone time, time for hobbies or friends, so you are rejuvenated and building interests.
  6. Fuel Excitement—Plan some new and exciting activities together to keep things from getting mundane. Take a trip, go kayaking, sailing, hot air ballooning or something that gets your adrenaline pumping. Even an amusement park or game of football can trigger youthful feelings.
  7. Flirt—Touch your partner throughout the day, say or text sexy things. Praise your spouse publicly and privately.

Rather than making date night a once a month or once a week ordeal, make dating your spouse a lifestyle decision.

What do you find most challenging about maintaining a dating lifestyle, versus getting caught up in the busyness of life and its challenges? For me, it’s making my marriage a priority and carving out regular time to invest in it.

What Makes a Great Marriage?

Continuing from my last post, which offered two recipes for a successful marriage, following are some very interesting facts about what sets the best marriages apart, according to sociologists as reported in Deseret News:

  • The quality and openness of sex is more important than its frequency.
  • 90% of couples who pray together report “very great” sexual satisfaction.
  • Couples who agree on religious faith AND family finances double their chances of success.
  • Most unhappy couples acknowledge their conflicts are of relatively recent origin and are short-term, not necessarily a precursor to divorce or infidelity.
  • At any moment, fewer than one-fifth of couples are in the “falling in love stage.”
  • At any moment, more than half of couples are “settling down” in their marriage.
  • At any moment, one-fourth of couples, young and old, report they are “beginning again”—reviving the romance of their earliest years together.

I love that last fact! Have you thought about the need to “begin again” with your spouse—to revive the spark and refresh your romance on a regular basis? Every marriage will experience ebbs and flows. Perhaps now is a great time for you to invest more of your time and effort into your relationship. Cultivate romance.

Begin by thinking about why you married your spouse in the first place. Think about your wedding day and the feelings you shared.  Reminisce with your spouse. List his or her positive traits if you need to, and focus on the positive aspects of your relationship. If you need some inspiration, check out 7 Small Things You can Do to Improve Your Marriage.

In which stage is your marriage? Do you agree with the social scientists or is every marriage unique?