Good love takes time and effort to be strong and lasting.
Most of us know that solid communication skills, commitment and patience—with a heavy dose of humor—are needed to make love last. Yet love can also be fragile too.
During the day-to-day busyness we all endure, it becomes a little too easy to watch it slip through our hands if we’re not mindful.
Here are 8 simple yet deadly ways love can fall apart on us if we’re not careful.
1. Skimming over past pain.
This one is a biggie. Once we pass the age of 16, the likelihood of experiencing hurt, disappointment or betrayal is 100 percent. Not taking the time to feel the pain from our past keeps it alive and present in the here and now.
When we have pain that hasn’t been processed, we carry it into our current relationship. You can’t skim over or positive think your way out of emotional pain. When we try to skim over past pain and stuff our emotions, we’ll find some way to project them on to our current partner because pain wants to be processed. Take care of your past so your present can be happy.
2. Over thinking everything.
Remember the phrase “paralysis by analysis”? Over thinking and over analyzing someone’s every word, move or intention kills any chance of intimacy or connection.
Worrying and trying to figure out someone’s intention is a sign of emotionally operating from the past and hoping to be safe. Even if your current lover has hurt you in the past, expecting them to hurt you again almost guarantees they will, because you’re hyper sensitive versus relaxed and present. Remember, we see what we expect to see—stay in the now moment.
3. Protecting yourself emotionally.
Keeping one foot out emotionally to protect yourself just in case things don’t work out is like trying to consistently drive 65 mph while tapping your brake every other minute. You’re not going to get anywhere in love by holding back. Sure, respect your own boundaries, but remember falling in love is just that—freely falling. Too often we experience hurt and never really let go again. Take your foot off the brake and trust.
4. Confusing drama-free with complacency.
We all agree that a drama-filled relationship is bad, while feeling a sense of safety in love is good—right?
Unfortunately it’s too easy to fall into complacency when we’re not feeling mentally challenged or the need to be on our toes. Taking for granted that you have someone forever, and forgetting to turn on the charm and attention you give others in the direction of your partner too, facilitates complacency and boredom. It takes two to do the hot passionate dance of tango, don’t drop your partner’s hand and expect them to keep dancing for you.
5. Stop making eye contact.
Eyes are the windows to the soul.
Let’s face it, life is busy and over time it becomes easy to navigate getting out of the house in the morning without even making eye contact with the one we love. It may sound small, but eye contact is intimate. Intimacy in the bedroom starts with intimate contact throughout the day.
6. Assuming you know your partner inside and out.
Even if you met at birth, spent every day together and have talked for hours, there is no way to know everything about another human being. We are all individuals with individual thoughts, perceptions and emotional experiences.
People change over time, so don’t assume that your partner’s hopes, dreams and desires haven’t—continue to get to know your partner as though you don’t, because the truth is, it’s not possible to know everything about another no matter how long you’ve been together.
7. Forgetting that the past does not equal the future.
Whether you’ve been hurt in the past or hurt by your current partner, remaining in the present moment is non-negotiable when it comes to love. The past does not equal the future. It never has and it never will. Have a relationship with the person in front of you now, not someone from yesterday.
8. Stop touching.
Your skin and your brain are the two largest influences on your sex drive. Relationships are hot in the beginning because you’re touching and kissing, as well as talking and questioning one another, constantly. The brain got covered in #6 above, so let’s move on to touching.
As time goes by, too many couples get lazy and forget to touch for no particular reason. When we touch the one we love, the hormone oxytocin is produced and provides a huge opportunity for connection. Oxytocin is one hell of a powerful love drug. Talking stimulates the brain, and touching stimulates everything else. Touch each other a lot.
Author: Tamara Star
Editor: Travis May
Image: Joel Bombardier/Flickr