It is a beautiful blessing when a new baby or children come into our lives. Our whole world changes as we devote our best to the newcomer of the family, both physically and emotionally. While the blame for marriage breakdowns can never be laid on our kids, the impact children can have on our relationships is significant.
For many couples, it starts with many sleepless nights packed with crankiness and frustration. As they devote a lot of their time, energy and effort into raising this new human being, there seems to be no time for anything else, including their relationship. Following that, intimacy and sex are rarely on the menu and they settle for just ‘getting by’. As time goes on, lovers and partners become roommates, and best friends become strangers living together. Romance, intimacy and passion become something they used to have. For many, children become the only reason the couple stays together.
Our relationships need to be something we continuously nurture, no matter how busy things can get. The 7 simple tips below will help keep the passion flame alive for many years to come.
1. Set time-out for self-care.
When you constantly feel tired, drained and exhausted, you’ll have no patience for anyone or anything else.
Let me ask you a question, what do you do when your phone battery runs low? Let me guess – you plug it in to recharge, right? As human being, there will be times when your energy runs low too, so make sure you ‘plug-in’ and recharge as well with no guilt or judgment. Block-out at least a couple of hours a week to just relax, have a nap, get a massage, go for a walk, mediate, exercise or do something you really enjoy.
2. Make time for each other.
We all want to have more time so we can fit in all the things we want to do. But let’s get real here, we can’t have more hours in a day so it all comes right back to our priorities. Isn’t it true that we will make time for the things we value the most? For the things that must get done? One of the reasons why couples experience a lack of intimacy and passion is because their relationship has not been one of their top priorities. Spend time each day (no matter how small!) to connect and focus on each other.
3. Bring back the romance.
Can you recall those fun dates and surprises that you two used to have? When children come into the picture, romance is usually the first thing that gets thrown out the window. Tony Robbins has said “Do what you did in the beginning of the relationship and there won’t be an end.” This is now the perfect time to re-create those magic moments you used to have. Romance doesn’t have to be expensive, time consuming or daunting. Get creative and fun with your romantic ideas. Here are some simple suggestions: Dinner with candlelight, love notes, breakfast in bed, etc.
4. Switch off the technology.
Technology was supposed to make our lives simpler so that we can have more time for our loved ones. The reality seems to be the contrary; we get busier in front of our computers and our phones, then we go home to spend hours in front of the TV. Even before bedtime, some might feel the need to check their emails or Facebook in bed. As a result, we have less time to be ‘present’ in our lives and even less time for our partners. It’s about time we switch off the technology, swap our TV time for connection time and enjoy each present moment fully.
5. Communicate always.
The number 1 rule for relationship success: Communicate! Communicate! Communicate! You need to be able to communicate through the good times and through the tough times. Never make assumptions about the other person’s feelings or thoughts. You need to be able to communicate to him about your own needs, not by blaming or attacking him, but by being honest, vulnerable and assertive. If you find it challenging to communicate, seek out professional help instead of suppressing it all inside.
6. Be passionate about each other.
A simple way to bring passion back to your relationship is to be passionate about each other. Imagine you were those teenagers falling in love for the very first time, say “I love you” often, hug tightly, kiss like you’ve never been kissed before, spend time to hold hands, connect, look into each other’s eyes, have sensual and intimate touch, make it fun and sensual during sex. Start small and work your way up!
7. Have fun together.
When was the last time you had fun purely for the sake of having fun together? Remember those times when you would giggle, laugh and be silly for no reason? Find new ways to put some fun, energy and excitement back into your relationship. Do things you have always wanted to do, learn something new, get some new hobbies to do together etc.