Originally posted on Bustle
If you feel like you and your partner have lost your spark — or that your relationship is getting boring — don’t worry, you’re not alone. It’s a totally normal thing that happens, especially in long-term relationships.
“As a Marriage and Family Therapist, I find this to be a common issue in the couples I work with,” Erika Labuzan-Lopez, LMFT, LPC tells Bustle. And it makes sense. When you’re together for a long time, it may not feel like all-fun, all the time.
But that’s not to say that getting bored is always a bad thing — it can actually be a sign of a grounded relationship. “It’s important to note that being bored is not always a big problem and can indicate a healthy and stable relationship,” Labuzan-Lopez says. “Having stability and knowing exactly what your partner is thinking or how they approach situations can be evidence that you have a solid foundation. What I’ve found is that couples who are bored and really just disconnected and need to find ways to bring back connection is all ways: physically, time, emotionally, and sexually.”
So even though feeling a bit bored isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it’s totally natural to want to make things exciting again. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to put some more passion into your relationship and reconnect on an emotional level (and a physical one, if you want). Here’s what you can try.
1. Check In With Yourself
If you’re feeling bored with your relationship, make sure that it’s not just a case of you feeling bored in life and blaming the relationship. “My mother, my first and most prominent mentor, used to say, ‘Smart people don’t get bored, they get curious,‘ which aligns with zen psychotherapy,” zen psychotherapist and neuromarketing strategist Michele Paiva tells Bustle. “A Buddhist mind is a curious mind.” Paiva tells her clients who are bored to look inward and see if they’re happy with themselves first.
2. Remember What You Appreciate About Them
You’re with your partner for a reason, so take time to remember it. “A simple habit to revive love and contribute to faithfulness is to offer three appreciations every day to your partner with heartfelt authenticity,” relationship expert, Sonika Tinker, MSW, tells Bustle. Reminding them (and yourself) what you’re grateful for and why you love them is a great way to reconnect.
3. Start A New Box Set
If you want to create an opportunity for bonding time, starting a new series together is an easy way to do it — so it’s time to finally get around to watchingBreaking Bad or Game of Thrones. “Watch a TV series together,” Cindi Sansone-Braff, author of Grant Me a Higher Love , tells Bustle. “In the past, there was one TV in a household and not that many shows to choose from, so couples sat in the living room or the den watching a show together,” she says. “Now there are a gazillion shows to choose from and every room has a TV set, and television has become a solo activity.”
Now, if you’re already regular TV watchers, this might not be the right option for you — so instead, make a couple’s bucket list of things you want to do and start checking them off. It’s all about committing to spending time together.
4. Plan Something Together
Planning is a bonding experience in itself — and it also gives you something to look forward to. “Plan something together,” life coach Kali Rogers Kali Rogers tells Bustle. “Just like people need promotions in their work in order to feel challenged and rewarded, couples need to feel that same adrenaline rush in a relationship. Planning dates, an event or a project together ignites companionship and appreciation.” And then you’ll actually get to do the fun things you’ve planned.
5. Inject Some Novelty
If you’re bored, doing something new is an obvious step. “Take one whole week to do one thing a day that breaks your routine, even small things,” Danielle Sepulveres, sex educator and author of Losing It: The Semi-Scandalous Story of an Ex-Virgin, tells Bustle. “Skip the laundry, try a new restaurant, read out loud to each other from your favorite books, take a walk and play FMK with characters from the last TV show you watched together.” A new activity, a new setting, a new anything can help shake things up.
6. Try Having Sex In A Different Location Or Writing Each Other Sexy Emails
If you’re feeling bored sexually, then make some changes to spice things up in the bedroom. Sansone-Braff suggests having sex at a different time or in a different place, or write each other an erotic emails. “You could also schedule an affair with each other and meet for some afternoon delight,” she says. If that doesn’t sound like you, a new position or a new location should do the trick.
7. When In Doubt, Talk To Your Partner
If you feel like you and your attempts to shake things up aren’t working, you should never shy away from telling them how you feel. “Instead of blatantlytelling your partner that you are bored, perhaps you suggest that you’ve been stuck in [a] rut … and you think it would be fun for the both of you to do something new together,” says clinical psychologist Dr. Sarah Williams. If you explain that it’s important to you, they should have no problem getting on board with that.
Being in a relationship, especially a long-term one, means having some periods of time that are more exciting than others. But, luckily, there are plenty of ways to mix things up. So if you’re feeling bored, don’t let stagnation take over — talk to your partner and make some changes.