How to Make Love Last

COUPLE-IN-BED

How to Make Love Last

Despite the elevated divorce rate, long term love is not doomed. In fact many couples experience a beautiful, deep, thrilling connection throughout their lives together. A recent study conducted by Stony Brook University found that out of a sample of 274 married couples, together 10 years or longer, 49% of men and 46% of women said that they were “very intensely in love.” This study was published in The Journal of Social Psychological and Personality Science. Head researcher Daniel O’Leary and his team uncovered the secrets to sustaining romance. So how do you make love last? First, physical intimacy is important, such as hugging and kissing. It releases oxytocin the “cuddle hormone” helping the couple relax and connect. Couples who didn’t report any physical displays of love were also those in a loveless marriage. Sexual frequency also contributed to feelings of intense love. But it wasn’t necessary. 25% stated feeling this way without be physically intimate with their partner within the last month. Physical affection even makes up for other negative aspects of a relationship. Some couples who reported stress over financial decisions, different parenting styles and so on who took part in physical affection still said they were in intense love with their partner.

Couples that remained positive were also far more likely to feel intense love for each other. Some couples take each other for granted or the elements in their partner that they love, appreciate or admire fade from constantly seeing them. But those who showed more appreciation were far more likely to be intensely in love. Another aspect was sharing in interesting, unique and exhilarating experiences together. Exercising, cooking, reading and discussing the same book or article, learning something new that was exciting like surfing, traveling, exploring spirituality or going on adventures all helped couples maintain intense, long lasting love. Personal happiness was the last quality that couples that love intensely share. Personal happiness was especially important for women in these relationships. But does being intensely in love also infuse a person with happiness, or does personal happiness bring an extra spark to the relationship? This is a chicken and egg scenario, a Mobius strip without end. See if you can infuse some of these characteristics in your relationship. Practice appreciating your partner. Go on adventures and explore together. Invest in some quality time. Make sure to show physical affection toward one another. Your love will grow and blossom if you cultivate it in the right way. For more advice read, Lasting Love: How to Avoid Marital Failure by Alistair Begg.

Love Speaks Many Languages

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Love Speaks Many Languages

We often hear that love is the universal language. But is it just one?  According to author and Christian counselor Dr. Gary Chapman, love is in fact multilingual. Dr. Chapman’s book The Five Love Languages talks about how we receive, experience and project intimacy with our partner.  Each person, it states, experiences love best in a different manner. There are five ways in which love is communicated according to this view: words of affirmation, quality time, gifts, acts of service and physical touch.

The first, words of affirmation, are compliments we give our partner in order to thank them, show appreciation and also build their self-esteem. If you tell them how nice the meal they cooked was or how good they look, you are expressing this kind of love. The second one is quality time. This is spending time with your significant other, doing things together, talking together and enjoying one another’s company. Couples who explore interests together have a stronger relationship. Exciting experiences together can also keep the spark alive.

The third kind is gifts. Gift giving is found in every culture on earth. Lovers have and always will express how they feel about each other by bestowing little tokens. Remember that it doesn’t have to have a weighty price tag to make a big impression. Oftentimes, it’s the small things that count. And they build up over time. A little gesture or unique gift tailored exactly to what your lover’s interests are will make a big impact no matter what you budget. An act of service can be doing something for your spouse like cooking for them, helping them with something, and physical acts that can be performed with love.

The last one is physical touch; kissing, hugging, hand holding, cuddling, putting your arms around each other and being physically intimate are all ways that we touch to express love.  According to Dr. Chapman, it’s best to communicate your love in the way that your romantic partner accepts love. Their job is to do the same for you. To help your partner you should find out what your love language is. Ask yourself these questions to find out: How do you give love? What do you often complain about? What do you ask for from your lover? Knowing your lover’s language isn’t natural. Of this Dr. Chapman says, “We’re not talking comfort. We’re talking love. Love is something we do for someone else. So often couples love one another but they aren’t connecting. They are sincere, but sincerity isn’t enough.” Find out how your lover expresses love best and how you receive it best. Then open those channels and let the love rush in.

Things Men do that Don’t Impress

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Things Men do that Don’t Impress

It isn’t easy finding someone to date around here. The prospect can be at times glorifying, terrifying and downright dull. It surely isn’t easy to catch the attention of the right person either. But sometimes guys go about it all wrong. They try to impress but end up turning her off. Alexander Dumass recently approached AskWomen forum on Reddit and asked what the worst ways to pick up women were. The results are as follows. Pay careful attention gentleman; here are the things men say or do that do not impress. Some guys trash talk women. But if you are trying to impress her why would you insult her whole sex? Follow up question, how is that supposed to make you look good?

Guys, if you’ve been having trouble with the ladies, think about why that is. Was it the girls you were dating? If so, it may be your selection process that was off. And just as men hate it when women put us in an entire category, so too do they. Don’t be so negative, and if you feel that way perhaps couch those feelings until later, or don’t approach her at all. Don’t insult your current flame. If you are saying negative things about her what makes you think she’s going to want to date you? You see, if you are saying these things about your current girl, it makes logical sense that if this new girl starts dating you she’ll sooner or later be the one being insulted. So again keep the negativity to a minimum.

Showing off how much money you make is a turnoff. As one Redditor wrote, “It’s not douchey to have money or to spend money on nice things. It is douchey to brag about how much money you make and the nice things you own, to make a big show of spending your money so everyone can see how rich you are, or to act as though being wealthy somehow makes you better than those around you.” If you get her number do not send her a photo of your member. Men may be visual creatures but women are turned on mentally and emotionally. If she does enjoy that sort of thing, and ask her first before doing it, make sure you are deeply involved in a relationship.

If you really want to turn her on and make her like you, talk to her, find out what she likes, what she’s into and find out all you can about it. Don’t go down a checklist of why you are the best guy to be her man. This isn’t an interview and you aren’t filling a position. These are women, beautiful, mysterious creatures. Appeal to her on a fun, interesting, human level. It’s more about making an emotional bond than fulfilling the duties of the position. Do not tell her or even brag about how many women you’ve been with. Don’t lie and say you are really into something that you aren’t into just to get close to her. Be honest with her. If you say it’s your favorite film, make sure it is. Women have incredible B.S. meters. Lastly, find out about her. Don’t just go on and on about yourself, or you might turn around and find she’s slipped off. For more advice read, How to Be a Chick Magnet: Learn Exactly How to Attract and Impress a Girl, and Master the Art of Talking to Women by Calvin Biggs.

Gender Difference Myths Affect Dating and Relationships

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Gender Difference Myths Affect Dating and Relationships

It seems that everyone knows someone who has it all figured out. They have an opinion on everything; men and women, how the sexes operate, dating and relationships. You would think they would all be in the throes of some powerful romantic relationship. But the best armchair philosophers often dine alone. Some people operate on the myths our culture perpetuates and get tripped up by them. A lot of these hangers on are not the individual’s fault. They are passed down by word of mouth for generations.

Other misconceptions that cause slipups happen due to an individual’s own past experiences. But experience is myopic. Cultural myths may be wrong, and personal experience, though valuable, is also shortsighted. One person’s experience does not necessarily mean it is everyone’s. In fact that situation, though real to them, may have been an anomaly. So does research support commonly understood beliefs about the sexes? Or are these myths just standing in the way of our happiness? Psychologists tell us that presumed gender differences and the myths that surround them actually affect dating and relationships. Men and women think they are supposed to act a certain way, or their partner feels a certain way due to their gender, and these expectations get in the way of reality, and make us less flexible in mitigating it.

One of the first such myths we come across is that men tend to be straightforward and pragmatic, while women are mysterious and romantic. Although with some couples this is true, psychologists say there are many men who are more romantic than the women they are with. There is a metric used to measure romantic sentiment called the Romantic Beliefs Scale. Men generally outscore women in this. Statements on the scale include: “If I love someone, I know I can make the relationship work, despite any obstacles” and “There will only be one real love for me”. Men also believe in love at first sight far more often than women do. Another commonly quoted myth is that men and women approach conflict differently. Actually, research suggests the opposite. Men and women generally approach conflict in a similar way. There are some couples however who engage in what is called the “demand/withdraw” style of argument. Here one person makes demands while the other avoids the subject being discussed. Here the demander makes more and more demands, while the withdrawer finds more and more ways to elude them. Both end up being angry and perplexed. In this scenario, the woman is often the one communicating demands. But of course, not always.

Some psychologists say power dynamics have more to do with an irreconcilable conflict pattern than anything else. In studies it is the role rather than the gender which is important. For instance, whoever wants change in the relationship, be they man or woman, becomes the demander in the demand/withdraw pattern. Researchers have found that both men and women can play both roles. Then there is the common myth that men only care about looks, while women care about who the person is on the inside. A study wanted to test this myth. In it researchers had both men and women rate the qualities they most desired in a mate. Both sexes put appearance on the list. Men rated it fourth most important, women sixth. So looks are important to both men and women. They are more important to men, but not significantly more.

Although men and woman are portrayed completely differently in the media, psychologists say the real life differences are relatively slight. If you want a physical metaphor to illustrate the point, women are generally shorter than men. But there are some women who are taller than some men, and that doesn’t surprise us. Personality differences are even less pronounced, psychologists say. In this case, it’s really up to the individual you are dating or are with. Find out what they are like, what you are like and how you can resolve your differences without worrying about preconceived notions of gender. If you want to strip away the myths and really communicate with your partner read the scholarly work, Close Encounters: Communication in Relationships by Laura K. Guerrero.

Getting Over someone You Adored

HEARTBROKEN

Getting Over someone You Adored

Sometimes you just can’t wait to get rid of someone and move on with your life. Then there are those relationships you regret ever getting into. There are the ones who sting and the ones that cut deep. But the worst of all is getting over someone you adored, someone you feel that you just can’t live without. You’d rather go without limbs, eyes and vital organs than your lover and can’t believe they’d even think of leaving you. Perhaps it’s just a passing phase, or they’ve suddenly become mentally ill. How will you go on living? The end of a relationship can consume your entire life. Some have even contemplated suicide. Whether it’s feelings of abandonment, inadequacy, guilt, misplaced anger or rejection just know that you are going to be okay. You’ll get through this. Someday you’ll wonder what is was that you saw in this person. First, it may be cliché but with time it will hurt less and less until one day you’ll be free and feeling great. Allow yourself the proper time to get over it. Don’t obsess over your ex. Instead, focus on you, how you are feeling and your healing. When you’re ready get back into the swing of things. Even if you don’t feel like it, fake it until you make it. Be social and engage with others. Start to reconnect with your own past. Find out what you want to do with your life. When you get to make decisions like that, single life can start to feel quite liberating.

Try different projects, volunteer, reconnect with your faith or explore a path you’ve always wanted to try. Lots of people find comfort in writing. Why not start a journal or even a blog? If you are into the arts take a local class. Spend some time thinking about improving yourself. What patterns do you see creeping up in your own life that are destructive? What can you do that’s a healthy alternative? Go on a road trip with a friend, visit a country you’ve always wanted to see, volunteer at your local homeless or animal shelter, tutor a child and feel what it’s like from other people’s point of view, in order to gain some perspective. Take up some new activities. Visit new places. Explore your interests, yourself and your world. When you are ready consider dating again. What would you be looking for? What did you learn works for you in past relationships and what hasn’t worked? Why not reconnect with past loves and see what they think of you and your relationship now in hindsight? What were the lessons that they learned? What did they learn about you? What really happens when you lose a major love is you find yourself, the love of your life. Once you reemerge a stronger person you will seek and find the person you’re meant to be with. So enjoy the journey inward that will lead to a quest to find love in the time to come. To explore this topic further pick up a copy of, Getting Past Your Breakup: How to Turn a Devastating Loss into the Best Thing That Ever Happened to You by Susan J. Elliott.