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Friday, February 28, 2014

Romantic Marriage

Feeling romantic today?

Feeling the slightly giddy, can't-keep-from-smiling warmth toward your mate that you remember from courtship?

Well, I hope you remember it.

Most couples, on reading the opening lines of this post, would smile ruefully, and say..."Well...no. We've been married for years, and those feeling just go away, and are replaced by contentment and familiarity. Giddiness is for kids."

Believe that, and you're cheating yourself. Cheating your spouse, too. To a large degree, our feelings are a product of our mindset, and equally a product of the actions we take.

Consider feeling 'good'. If we make an effort to think positively, and fill our surroundings with positive images and actions, we'll feel better than if we dwell on hopelessness, listen to sad songs, and watch depressing movies.

So, here are some suggestions to bring romance back to life in your relationship.

Remind yourself why you're there - keep a special diary, or even a notebook, and every day, at the same time (to make it a habit), write down one reason you enjoy your spouse. Don't worry about getting repetitive - the object is to focus on something you like that day.

Be physical - when you pass in the hallway, touch, even if it's just a passing caress to the hand or shoulder. Walk up behind your spouse unexpectedly, put your arms around them. and kiss the back of the neck. Hold hands when you walk together, even if it's just to the mailbox.

Take care of yourself - Guys...shave. Please. Ladies...uh, same thing. Take care of your hair first thing in the morning, and make breakfast a date. What does it say to your spouse when you appear at breakfast with your hair a disaster, slopping around in floppy slippers and a worn bathrobe? Does it say, "I love you, and I'm glad to share this time with you?" Or does it say "Yeah, whatever, I'm tired, and I don't have to look good for you"?

Dress for success - Dress neatly, in clean clothes, even if you're going top paint the barn together. You're not dressing for a task or for convenience when you're together - you're dressing for one another. So ditch the baggy sweats, and the stained t-shirt that you wore on Spring break in Mazatlan.

Smell good - Wear perfume or aftershave that your spouse likes on you. We can't really tell how a fragrance reacts with our own body chemistry, so your mate's input is vital. Don't wear Old Spice or Chanel No. 5 because it's a family tradition; wear what appeals to the most important person in your life.

Do fun things together - Shared enjoyment is the cornerstone of a good romantic relationship. When you were courting, you choose activities that were (usually) about equally fun for both of you. Yes, you were centered on the being together part, but you probably still thought about how an activity would go down with your beloved.

What about now? Do you still do this, or has "I'll go to the opera with you, if you'll go to the tractor pull with me" crept into your schedule?

Look for opportunities in the unexpected. "Oh, that might be fun!" can be a doorway to a whole new chapter in your life, whether it's skydiving or ballroom dance (both of which I heartily recommend for couples).

Share your scent - Before you part for the working day, hold a close embrace, and breathe in the way your mate smells (this is where good grooming becomes important, okay?). This is a physiological process, an imprinting, that says, I'm your, you're mine.

It's a good thing to carry into the world with you.

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