Empty nesters and couples over 50 who have been busy with their running a family home and respective careers often neglect their relationships.
Now add some time to that pattern. For example; add a week, a month or several months to that pattern. What is the result? The result is a relationship that has grown cold.
This is the case for any relationship. A friendship can grow cold in the same manner. So is it a matter of not being interested in the other person? Well, it could be.
However, the real source of the coldness is communication. Well the lack thereof. Communication is the fuel of any relationship. It is like blood to the body. When the flow of communication is halted the relationship is essentially dead.
Communication requires effort. It requires time. It is often said that men are not good communicators and therefore it is used as an excuse to not communicate much with their wives. That is a poor excuse.
Men can communicate. It is just a matter of what subject they are communicating about. It takes effort on everyone’s part; to not only communicate about what they are interested in, but also what the other person is interested in as well.
A relationship requires give and take. Often time’s sacrifices are made. Remember to sacrifice oneself on behalf of another is the greatest expression of love. So for love sake, effort and time is needed to communicate.
Change in your relationship can happen today, by just saying a few more words than you did yesterday. Practice saying a bit more and before you know it, the blood is flowing again.
So is your relationship going a little stale? Is the magic starting to fade? If so, follow our guide to The Mind Gym’s top tips and bring your relationship back to life.
Top 10 tips to bring your relationship back to life
- Forgive even if you can’t forget – it is better to be happy than right. This is easier than you think so long as you as you feel acknowledged and respected through the agreement of conditions and ‘alarm calls’ to prevent future lapses.
- Say sorry (often) and mean it – remember if your partner is upset or hurt that matters even if the same thing wouldn’t have upset you.
- Feel their pain – at least once a day pause to think how the other person might be feeling with all that’s going on in their life.
- Build connection – make and welcome the many tiny overtures – the offer of tea, the request for more duvet, the reference to what’s for dinner – which make up your day-to-day lives together. The devil is in the detail and your risk of divorce can be predicted from the way you interact over the mundane details.
- See the best in the other person – a yawn means they’re tired, not bored; their bad joke was an attempt to be funny, not to put you down. Not only will this remove conflict but as people are drawn to optimism it will make you more attractive.
- Lavish praise – Communicate the positive things you feel. 5:1 is the magic minimum. If you really can’t think of anything because the rot has set in, lavish praise on the things they used to do. “I loved it when you used to.. Wasn’t it great when..”
- Show you care even when you’re not there – record Eastenders when she is late home, bring back his favourite wine. It only costs a thought not an arm and a leg.
- Trigger positive feelings – reminisce about the good old times; hunt out pictures from past holidays; talk about how you met.
- Re-build trust in the relationship – work together on a project that you’ll both enjoy. Plan a holiday, plant the garden, repaint the bedroom.
- Open the dialogue – as the atmosphere improves, talk about what you want the relationship to be like and what you can each do to help it get there.