8 ways to keep your relationship fresh
How to recreate that first-date thrill when things are getting stale.EDGAR staff August 31, 2014
The most common reason why marriages and long-term relationships become stale is that the thrill of a first date and the excitement of a new romance are nigh on impossible to maintain over the long haul. Sure, the security, trust and love may be there, but that magic of a new relationship can fade quickly.
As a result, the whole situation becomes rather mundane, with both parties stuck in a rut of overfamiliarity. That spark of magic you both felt when you first met has been well and truly extinguished by a pile of dirty washing, and those butterflies in your stomach have been replaced by indigestion after too many lazy nights in front of the TV with a takeaway.
But it doesn't need to be like that. Successful relationships are maintained when things are kept fresh, and with these tips, you could be celebrating your golden wedding anniversary and still feel as loved up as the day you first met:
1. Go on dates
If your relationship has got to the point where you're not going out with each other any more, then this absolutely has to change. In almost all cases, dating is how the relationship began, so go back to basics and ask her out to dinner.
And don't cop out by booking that same old restaurant round the corner that you always go to; trying somewhere new will up the excitement levels and mean that it's a much more interesting and enjoyable experience for both of you.
2. Spend time apart
Just as important as it is to spent lots of quality time together, it's also vital to spend a certain amount of time apart. It doesn't matter how well you get on - if you're with someone every minute of every day then you're going to need a break from each other at some point.
If she's not keen, broach the subject carefully, perhaps suggesting an activity she might like to do with her friends, while you make your own plans on the golf course. You know what they say: absence makes the heart grow fonder.
3. Travel together
Key to keeping the spice in a relationship is breaking up the routine. So if even your holidays have become boring, then choosing a new destination to explore is a great way of adding excitement and adventure.
Experiencing new countries as a couple could reinvigorate your relationship, and there's also the added bonus of being able to stay in a hotel, with no daily chores to argue over.
4. Change your conversation topics
Remember when you used to talk for hours about nothing in particular, with no point to your conversation other than mutual enjoyment? Now that's been replaced with talk of paying bills, cleaning and feeding the pets.
Ditch the domestic chat and go back to enjoying each other's company. When was the last time you talked about music, film, sport or art with your other half? Give it a try.
5. Have parties
Throw a party and invite both yours and your partner's friends. Not only does this allow your friends to mingle, but it means that you both have the opportunity to socialise with other people while still being together.
And don't be that couple who are attached at the hip all evening. People in a healthy relationship should be just as comfortable apart as they are together.
6. Use the element of surprise
When was the last time you surprised your other half with something? If you have to rack your brains to remember, then you could probably do with planning another surprise.
It doesn't necessarily need to be anything spectacular - a little gift or impromptu lunch are enough to show her that you care. Although every once in a while a special surprise such as a romantic dinner for two can earn you some serious brownie points.
7. Look your best
The comfort and security a long-term relationship provides is nice, but it can mean that we don't always put quite as much effort into our appearance as we used to.
You might think that you don't need to impress anyone any more, so why bother? But you're forgetting the one person who you really should be trying your best for.
8. Set goals
Relationships aren't all flowers, dating and hotel rooms; unfortunately as much as the domestic side of things can seem boring, if you want to progress as a couple in the long term, it's necessary to work towards a few development goals.
Perhaps you want to buy your dream house, or give your children the best education possible? Or maybe in the shorter term you both want to get fit or progress at work? Setting targets and working towards them together will bring you closer to each other.