Reigniting the Spark in Your (Very) Comfortable Relationship
By Jillian Turecki
It’s Sunday night. You’ve had a lazy day catching up on your email, and perhaps you went to the gym or a yoga class. It’s time for you and your lover to get into pjs, order in take out, and put on the latest and greatest HBO series. Everything is perfect. You’re cozy, with your best friend who you are in love with, and nothing could be more comfortable. Life is good. Sound familiar?
This story describes the comfort of certainty, and there’s nothing wrong with it at all. However, if this is how you and your partner spend the majority of your time together, most likely your relationship is lacking passion. This is problematic. Passion, electricity, sexuality, and romance are half the relationship - without it, you have a friendship. Without it, you may have a safe and even good relationship. But, you definitely do not have an amazing one.
Certainty in an intimate relationship is absolutely crucial. If you want to be in it for the long haul, you MUST feel safe emotionally. For example, not knowing if your partner has your back and supports you is a horrible feeling that makes it very difficult to relax into the flow of the relationship. On the flip side, when we feel certainty with our partner – total confidence that this person will support and be there for us no matter what, we are able to drop more freely into the flow, and relax. Being able to enjoy comforts with your lover creates a bond and a feeling of comradeship. So please, have your cozy Sundays on the couch watching Netflix and eating ice cream. But if you want a truly fulfilling and exceptional relationship, you have to balance security and comfort with the thrill of uncertainty.
Passion lives in the realm of uncertainty. We simply cannot experience excitement without the risk of stepping into the unknown.
If you want to bring passion back into your relationship you have to bring back the part of you that co-created that passion to begin with.
When we get stuck in a relationship rut, we are often overwhelmed with the feeling that the passion has died having convinced ourselves that we’re powerless over the circumstance. As you may relate, this brings the energy way down in a relationship. The good news is if you once had passion, it can be recharged. It is not gone, lost forever. You nor your partner are not all of a sudden passionless people, or incapable of being in a relationship long term. It just means you are stuck in a pattern, and it has to be broken by reclaiming the part of your self who co-created the fire to begin with.
You see, in the beginning of a relationship, everyone has a HIGH energy – at least the majority of the time. We smile more, we focus on making the other person happy, we think of exciting things to do together, we take risks sexually and emotionally, and the charge of falling in love often inspires us to take risks in other areas of our life. We are our highest, sexiest, most interested and interesting selves. In other words, we have generated a beautiful emotional STATE.
No matter how stunning or hot your partner thinks you are, your VIBE is what turns him or her on more. How you make that person FEEL when they are in your presence is everything.
If you are in a relationship that was once exciting but is currently not, it’s because of two reasons: You have repressed (at least around your partner) the high vibe part of yourself AND you’ve BOTH neglected each other’s needs for variety, surprise, fun – all code words for (healthy) uncertainty.
Don’t wait for your partner to make changes. Take ownership of your influence and do the things that you did in the beginning of the relationship, now.
Here is what you can do right away to break the patterns that are killing the passion in your relationship.
What to DO:
Take a quiet moment to yourself, and if possible, take a seat with your chest elevated, and breathe. If it helps to place a hand on your heart and feel it’s beat, then try it. Now, go back in time to the first few to several months of your relationship. Think of how you felt - what was the dominant emotion? Try not to intellectualize this. FEEL that emotion. What must you focus on to resurrect that feeling? Where do you feel it in your body? Maybe it’s as subtle as feeling your shoulders relax, or your stomach loosen. Maybe you feel a charge of energy and excitement, almost like an internal pressure cooker, but in a good way.
Now, think about how you dressed back then –is it different than how you dress now? What are some of the things you would say to your lover? Did you compliment him/her? How did you flirt? Did you playfully tease? How did you use your voice to seduce or inspire him? Was there a recognizable pattern to the way you would say certain things that inspired more intimacy between the two of you?
Now think about some of the things you did together. What did you do that was exciting, fun, entertaining?
As you can see, we are getting quite specific here. The more you can feel the EMOTION of that time, the more you will understand what is required of you to reclaim your relationship fully.
Consider details about how your partner responds to a variety of gestures:
For example: Is your partner sensitive to sound? If so, bring back the voice, cadence, and melody with which you spoke to him/her. Is your partner a visual person? Wear something that you know makes her/his heart pound. Does your partner love to be surprised? Does he or she love not knowing what is coming next? Then plan a surprise! Perhaps he’s kinetic and feels love when he is touched. Then you simply just have to make the effort to touch him more, and you must touch him the way he likes to be touched – not how you like it. This exercise is about giving, not about you.
What NOT to do, no matter what:
Play games. This is always a form of withdrawal, or withholding – and it will DESTROY your love. For example, some people all of a sudden act uninterested, cold, or behave in ways that make them seem uninterested, like they just can’t be bothered. These are the bullshit games people play in relationships and they NEVER work because no one is acting authentically – and it just creates confusion and pain for both people. Whenever you withhold love, you kill your capacity to experience it. Never, ever do it no matter how frightened you may be.
DO NOT BLAME your loved one:
It really does take two. If you get stuck in the blame game, you not only lose all your power to create positive change, but you also miss the point. When you blame your partner for the lack of physical passion in your relationship, you create a pattern that will paradoxically become largely responsible for the fire burning out. It’s the attack and defend pattern, and it is NOT sexy, or safe for that matter. No one feels sexy or sexual when they are defending themselves. Don’t “blame” yourself either. You can take ownership of your part with the sole purpose of taking action. Once you go into a self-deprecating mode, you are definitely NOT generating a good state. Remember, you must bring back the part of yourself that co-created the passion, and the passion will follow. If you hate on yourself you’re just throwing water onto that sexy fire.
I’m not claiming that this is easy. It IS very simple, but not necessarily easy. It will require for many to step outside of their heads and into the unknown. It will require courage, especially if you are in a situation where your self-esteem may have lowered, and you are questioning your relationship. But every single one of us has the capacity to take our relationship to a new level, even you. We must all remember that the reason we get into relationship is to magnify emotion – to give more life to the feeling of love within ourselves, and to our ability to give it to another. But what we may not know consciously is that we also get into relationship to better understand ourselves, and to evolve our relationship to ourselves to the next level. Your STATE is the most valuable tool you can use to transform any part of your life, particularly your relationship. Every moment is an opportunity to make a decision. Decide to invoke that part of yourself that fell in love to begin with, and have fun in the process.