by Dr. John Hart, LGMFT
A friend of mine asked me a long time ago, “Are you living or are you existing?” This is a common problem that couples struggle with over the course of their relationship. “Existing” refers to the robotic lifestyle of doing the same thing over and over, day in and day out. “Living,” on the other hand, suggests the lifestyle of being in the now, embracing variation and indulging your desires without feeling guilty. The easiest way to achieve the goal of “living” again comes down to one basic intention – bring the fun back to your romantic relationship.
1. Slow Down – We live in a fast-paced world and sometimes we just keep going, which leads to a robotic, boring lifestyle. In order to have fun again, you and your partner need to work hard to slow things down in both of your lives. What does slowing down accomplish? Of course, it allows you to catch your breath. But more importantly, slowing down gives both you and your partner the opportunity to be more physically, emotionally and mentally present with one other.
2. Explore Shared Interests – Think about it! You and your partner are together likely because there was a strong level of shared interests in beginning of the relationship that guided fun, humor, and a sense of lightheartedness. Then life kicked in and the time spent on common hobbies started to dwindle. Once you and your partner have slowed things down, get back to having those intriguing conversations on shared interests. Why not even go the extra step to explore new activities together? It will create an invigorating spirit in your relationship that will keep it fresh and exciting.
3. Be Unpredictable – This does not mean that you should throw all structure and reliability out of the window. But being unpredictable can also be a fun experience. Try to push yourself and your partner out of your comfort zones. Be more spontaneous and make fun a priority in your life again.