Like weight training, guitar playing, or creating in the kitchen; there are exercises that, when practiced regularly, will strengthen your muscles of love. Careful mate selection is, of course, a prudent prerequisite. Did you know that the average American spends more time researching a movie than their lifetime companion? Although another post, here is a tried and true dating approach to help jumpstart your joy ride.
Here are five exercises that have helped me, my friends, and my clients build stronger, healthier relationships.
- Prioritization: Putting “first things first”.
- Resolution of Personal Issues: Ditch the baggage and create more closet space.
- Open Communication: Share freely, deeply, and lovingly.
- Frequent Gourmet Sex: Sweetly dance within the pleasures of your love.
- Living Responsibly: Base thoughts, words, and actions on the truth.
If you want lasting love, you will need to make it important enough all the time. What are your priorities? Are you living up to them? For many, at least in theory; their priorities go something like this: First — relationship partner, relationship, and self care; Second — children, close family, and good friends; Third — career, extended family, and hobbies; Fourth — community, helping others, and service. There are many ways to break this down, but it is important to do it; one way or another. For example, working out, nutrition, healthcare, and self empowerment could fall under the category of self care. Pets and plants might fit within close family. For a relationship to grow and remain strong, it must be one of your highest priorities. I believe it is even more important than children, since they will be better cared for by stable, loving parents; and it will teach them the value of relationships. Relational problems often arise when people make their parents, siblings, BFFs, coworkers, or careers more important than their partners. Establishing a clear understanding of your priorities, and balancing it according to the assigned levels of importance; will fortify the foundation of your union. Your relationship is as strong as it is important to both of you.
Resolution of Personal Issues:
Dumping baggage on the flames of a steamy romance can put out the fire in a hurry. Issues like inadequacy, unfairness, and loss of control; along with their supporting defenses such as acting like a know-it-all, playing the victim, and being a control freak; can smother the life from your love. Such unfinished business can also cause insecurity, jealousy, and paranoia; leading to the dissolution of your dreams. If you know you have such issues, or if you suspect you might based on the words of caring others; then take the time to identify them, deal with them, and remove their dark distortions from your mind. . It may take some time to extract their perceptual filters from your initial interpretations of the world; but if you are aware of them, then you can watch for them, recognize them, and remove them from your thoughts if they are there. For example, if you have a victim issue, know you distort in this direction, and realize that sometimes you think things are unfair when they are not; then monitor your thoughts, watch for this to happen, and then replace the distortions with the truth before you say or do anything based on them. Some things that heighten our awareness to the existence of such problems within us include mindfulness meditation, accountability partnerships, journaling, thought tracking, self esteem work, resolving unfinished business from the past, spiritual development (especially related to awareness of truth, personal responsibility, and access to higher consciousness), calming natural supplements, and therapy. If you choose the therapeutic route, make sure you tell the truth to the counselor, because what you tell them about your life is all they know. If you go to them, and share the same distortions you are trying to overcome as if it is the truth; then, without realizing it, they will be reinforcing the problem. With such issues, it may be prudent to take someone else with you; someone who knows and loves you well; to clarify the truth and help hold you accountable to it.
Your relationship is as strong as it is accurately perceived by both of you.
Sharing an unencumbered, flowing connection with your honey; at the deepest possible level; will chase away the ghosts, build your trust and understanding, and nourish everything a couple needs to grow. The depth of discourse, emphasis of expression, and openness of disclosure create the linkages that draw us close and keep us strong. If it is not made important enough, then you will not invest sufficiently in its growth. If unresolved issues are clouding your perceptions, then you will fail to understand that which is shared. So make it a higher priority, and drop that moldy suitcase at the dump. Find practical exercises, like “I Messages” to strengthen your awareness, hope, and love. Consider practical books like “The Five Love Languages” to learn more about yourself and what you need. Avoid polarizing books like “Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus” as they create more problems than they solve. Anything that accentuates the separateness or differences between genders, races, ethnicities, sexual preference, religions, etc.; will reinforce existing problems and likely create new ones. Separateness is an illusion. Acceptance of this truth will increase empathy, broaden perspective, and strengthen the connection of our love. When the communication basics have been mastered, sharing at a spiritual level will draw you closer, make you stronger, and lift you up. A great title you could read together for this is “The New Earth.” Your relationship is as strong as it is connected to by both of you.
Frequent Gourmet Sex:
When your relationship is a high enough priority, when the baggage has been ditched, and when you flow together sweetly like a song; gourmet sex will make you healthy, hot, and strong. Sex may be the finest superfood, healing remedy, and beauty treatment yet discovered. Like most nutrients, medicines, and cosmetics; sex comes in junk food and gourmet versions. The benefits of refined, sensual epicurean expressions greatly exceed those of the casual tongue and cheek varieties. For sex to nourish, heal, and strengthen our relationship; we must become spiritually, emotionally, and physically vulnerable; which usually occurs within the safety, familiarity, and trust created by a long term, loving relationship. When it is made important enough, when personal issues have been resolved, and when openness flows freely day and night; gourmet sex is served with frequency and delight. Best selling author, couples therapist, and clinical psychologist Sue Johnson says that “sex without love is like dancing without music.” Regular love making keeps the body in better balance. That errotic ascension to orgasm pumps dopamine, our body’s natural heroin-high, into our neural pathways, producing motivation, stamina, and personal power. Check out these ideas to increase your sensual pleasure and make your sex life more incredible; . Here are some herbal enhancements to rev up your rhythms. So let’s eat heartily, heal naturally, and glow dazzlingly from a steady diet of stronger love and gourmet sex. If you crave an ambience electric for your erotic sexy dance, then add some “auditory pheromones” to the mix. Check it out HERE. If you are obsessed with sex, can’t get enough, but lost that electrifying magic somehow somewhere; then before launching into a downward spiral of cheating on your life; consider playing, with your partner, sexy games. Your relationship is as strong as your intimacy is sacred to both of you.
After balancing priorities, overcoming issues, communicating openly, and relishing gourmet sex; work at living life responsibly in all things. I believe that responsibility derives from truth. Seek the truth in each situation. Let it be your guide. If you make a mistake, admit it, learn from it, and grow beyond it. If your partner makes a mistake, respond with acceptance, compassion, and encouragement. Create an environment of safety, peace, and freedom. Your relationship is as strong as the level of responsibility lived by both of you.
Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons
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