Humans tend to not excel and to improve something that they’re really not that “in” to!”
The same is true whether it is our hobby of golf or our “love” in the marriage. When it comes to being “In Love”, it’s just as important to focus on the “In” as it is the “love.”
I will be doing an entire Date Night devoted to this subject on February 13th ,2016.
Most people believe that love is the key to marriage; they ask themselves “Am I being loved the way I want to be loved?” We think the operative word for being “In love” is the word love instead of the word “In”. The reality however is that love will come pretty natural to most if we just could somehow manage to stay “IN” our marriages better. Stay in the room, in the commitment, in service to one another. Here are four “In” to make sure you’re “into” if you want to remain “In Love”.
Tune “In” To Your Partner
- You used to have to dial into the station on the radio you are listening to.
- When we’re tuned in, there is less static, less interference. You are on the same page as your partner and it is so much easier to hear, understand and communicate with your partner.
- Every interaction should be a new opportunity to know how to better tune-into your partner and their unique way of living and communicating.
- Technology is a major distraction that ends up creating a lot of interference in today’s marriage. Turn off the tech after 8pm.
- Solutions- Find ways to clarify more what your partner is saying instead of just assuming you know. Spend more time actually looking at your partner while they are talking so you have access to other pieces of important data.
Allow Your Partner “In”
- A common complaint that I hear a lot of is that a spouse doesn’t let their spouse “in” to their heart.
- Healthy marriages demand that we allow other people into our fears, beliefs and deepest concerns. Many times you can tell that something is wrong with your partner but when you ask, they say, “No, I’m fine.” In so doing, you never open the door to deeper understanding.
- This ability to be vulnerable with your spouse seems risky to some and yet is essential to creating true “In-timacy” in a marriage.
- Every person on earth needs someone close to them to be able to hear and understand what is really going on inside of themself.
- Solutions- Find a way to make your partnership safe enough to share. Commit to being more vulnerable and risk a bit by accepting and validating without judgement what your partner shares with you.
Stay More “In-volved” In Each Other’s Life.
- With our lives being torn in so many different directions, many couples fall out of love simply because they are no longer involved deeply with in their partner’s life. When first dating we spend hours listening to our partner’s share their stories about work, hobbies and goals and dreams. Eventually many couple’s begin to “run out of things to talk about” or feel like there is nothing really new to share.
- This decreased involvement also takes place when we try to balance, work, kids and marriage. To find this balance sometimes we institute the “divide and conquer” approach with one person taking the kids to their lessons while the other cares for the yard. Or one will go to work, while the other manages the home. This dividing principle, although beneficial to efficiency of life, may be harmful to the ability to be more involved in your spouse’s lives.
- A typical division of labor approach might be that the wife takes responsibility for the inside of the home and the husband owns the outside of the home. The problem with dividing up work loads like that is the fact that we usually don’t end up mowing the lawn at 9pm at night and yet we can end up doing laundry, dishes and putting the kids to bed up into the wee hours of the night.
- Lose technology that distracts us.
- Solutions- Stay involved in each other’s lives. Make time to share the details of each other’s days. Don’t allow a simple answer (“good”) be given from a simple question (“How was your day”.) Instead ask more detailed questions and expect more detailed answers. (Tell me about your day. Or what was the best part of your day?) Try as much as you can to not divide and conquer. Figure out ways of how to do errands together. Minimize some of your family activities so you’re not always driving carpools. Put a date night together for every week so you can go out and talk. Organize weekly, monthly and yearly rituals to do together to build a sense of unity.
Keep In-Touch With Each Other
- Most of us connect the feelings of being “In Love” with those chemicals that were flowing deep inside our bodies when we first touched or kissed our spouses.
- We actually fell in love by keeping in the process of touch.
- Research shows that touching can heal and help people to feel less threatened or afraid. It can also calm a baby, relax a heart rate of a hospital patient and help someone to know they’re loved.
- Chemistry and touch go hand in hand (pun intended) so one of the fastest ways to ensure that a couple can rekindle and spark the feelings of “being in love” is by re-engaging the chemistry of touch.
- Solutions- Set up rituals to hug and kiss when arriving and leaving home. Hold hands when you can, kiss more than you normally do. Think back together and make a list of everything and every type of touch that mattered to you back when you were dating. Try to recapture some of old “touching” moments by introducing them to your life today. Find ways to increase the touch outside of the bedroom, might make it safer to manage the touch inside the bedroom.