Come on Baby, Rekindle Our Fire: Tips for Your Committed Relationship

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There’s nothing like the initial bliss felt between lovers in a burgeoning relationship (why else does every chick flick end just as the lovers wind up in each other’s arms?). The high of new love is so potent, so addicting, that both women and men admit to blazing through relationships just to devour this electric drug again and again.

But, as time passes and you and your partner come off the emotional roller-coaster ride, you’ll realize that stability and commitment burn at a cooler temperature than passion and lust.

Between daily chores and conflicting agendas, you or your partner may feel taken for granted. Pining for that passion, you may wonder: Can we rekindle the old flame?

The answer is: Yes, of course! Here’s a few principles to live by:

Recognize that the relationship you have built is separate from you and your partner and must be nurtured by both of you to stay healthy.
You and your mate are a unit, entirely separate from you as individuals. Whether you want to admit it or not, you and your boo can and do go on without each other. But your “we” or “us” won’t go anywhere if it isn’t nurtured. Consider the restorative effects of a girls’ night out or a super long conversation with an old friend. This same technique for sisterly bonding can be applied with your mate.

The truth is, that there isn’t always time for special attention. Sometimes the relationship has got to carry you and not the other way around. Which brings us to our next tip:

Love your partner as freely as you did in the beginning, and do not require your partner’s love in return.
Isn’t this how it was at the start when you felt so giddy? You committed random acts of passion — kissing in public, exchanging love notes, playing hooky — not because you were counting on returned affection, but because it just felt good. There is so much more to love and respect about your partner now. Give this love freely and you’ll be free to receive it.

You’ll find that some forms of love — like forgiveness — are more difficult than the others, such as indulging in a private joke. In the continual effort to be gracious with love, you will have arrived at the threshold of our final tip:

Practice love as a daily action, not a constant state.
Just like candy and flowers wooed you then but wouldn’t necessarily do it now, the form of love you gave yesterday may not be what is required today. Keep giving it, keep trying at it and give it again tomorrow even if you (oops) skimped on it today. “Love,” like “laugh,” “kiss,” and “rhyme” is a verb, not just a noun.

No one knows this better than the Latin poet who made foreplay of his wordplay. Our tips hold that romance will come naturally to a healthy relationship where the love is freely given day by day. To dial up the heat, score yourself a book of love poems by Neruda. I leave you with just a taste:

“Your hips were that much of the moon for me; your deep mouth and its delights, that much sun; your heart, fiery with its long red rays,
was that much ardent light, like honey in the shade. So I pass across your burning form kissing You-compact and planetary, my dove, my globe.”

-Pablo Neruda (One Hundred Love Sonnets)

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