The Honeymoon Period
Who doesn’t love the honeymoon period of a relationship? If you haven’t heard this term before, the honeymoon period is an amazing phase that happens at the very beginning of a relationship and can last up to a year or so. This special time is filled with excitement, missed work days, sleepless nights, and unbounded happiness as the thought of another person loving us fills our minds 24/7.
We eat and breathe this other person, as we forego all other relationships and hyper-focus on the one. S/he’s perfect for us. It seems like bliss. Our behavior certainly supports the notion of bliss as we carefully watch our manners, dress just right, say the right things, and ignore the habits and beliefs of the other person that we would otherwise consider problematic. In this time period together, the passion is high and it feels as though it will never end. We are in love.
Over time, though, the relationship changes. It is, of course, a natural progression since we can hardly keep up the pace of this stage. Eventually, we have to start showing up to family dinners and going to the movies with our friends again. But, does it all have to change? Can we fall in love all over again and revisit even a little bit of the original excitement? I believe we can.
Old News, Old Views
Part of the reason our relationships change, besides out of sheer necessity, is because what’s new eventually becomes old to us. Let’s look at this more closely. Anytime we acquire anything, a car, a job, or a person, we are excited and amazed by it in the beginning. But over time, the thing or person loses their appeal, meaning they don’t provide us with the same hit they did in the beginning. This hit happens because, for many of us, the main motivation behind acquiring anything, including a relationship, is pain relief.
What do I mean by that? I mean that getting into a relationship can be a means to an end. That is, the end of the pain of believing we are not good enough. This belief is something we are taught about ourselves that isn’t true, but many of us don’t know this. So, we do what we can to hide it or overcome it. Finding someone to love us because we don’t, or can’t, love ourselves is one pain relief tactic. There are many others. That doesn’t mean, however, that true love wasn’t part of the original equation. It can be, and often is. This is what will bring us back to love.
What tends to happen in relationships is that cracks appear in the once carefully orchestrated connections. The not so cool stuff about ourselves, that we’ve kept hidden, begin to surface. It seems we actually do throw tantrums when we don’t get our way. Additionally, what we used to approve of, accept, or ignore about the other person is now the same stuff that drive us nuts about them. Arguments and misunderstandings become the norm as mudslinging replaces cuddles and compliments.
That mud seems to stick. The person we couldn’t live without is eventually lost under the sludge-covered stories we tell ourselves about them in our minds. They are old news to us and we have forgotten why we fell in love. Not to worry, though. With love, all things are possible.
Focus on Love
Love, not as pain relief, but as an experience of the authentic self, is what brings us joy, peace, and an understanding of presence. You might be saying this all sounds great, but how does that help us fall in love with our special person again? Isn’t there too much water under the bridge to bring this listless love back to life? Maybe, but maybe not. Sometimes, beneath the motivation of pain relief exists a profoundly divine love that will stand the test of time. If there is a true, shared love in there, deep within your hearts (and you will both know it if it’s there), then anything can be saved. If it is time for you to move on, you will also know this in your hearts. Be honest with yourselves and listen to your intuition. You can’t get it wrong.
Let’s say that, as a team, you have determined that you are truly in love and want to experience more of this part of your relationship—you both want to rekindle the fire. Falling in love all over again can be even better than it was the first time because of the experiences you have shared are added the true love that makes two hearts into one. It’s a more of a mature love. All that is needed is to focus on the true love that brought you together.
Below are some ways to jump start that flame again. Come up with your own, too.
- Let go of the stories, the labels, the roles, and the judgments that you have accumulated in the past. These only serve as barriers to true love. As the gentle guru, Mooji, says, “The past is a lesson, not a life sentence.” Forgive each other and forgive yourself. Start fresh with a clean slate and be willing to explore that person as you did early on. We think we know someone, and to some degree we do. But if we don’t push someone’s past on them, we will experience who they truly are now.
- Make time to love and make love. Life happens, but that doesn’t mean we have to let it get in the way of intimate time, fun time, or relaxing time with our loved one. Beware. Your mind might try to derail your true love efforts by telling you that in order to be meaningful, intimate time has to be spontaneous, or some other made up story. Don’t listen to your mind on this. Listen to your heart. By all means, set time aside for each other to reconnect, not through the stresses and demands of life, but through the peace and tranquility of an appointment with nothing else to do but love.
- Each time you think about, talk about, or talk with your loved one, lead with gentleness, kindness and love. You can do this because you’ve done it before, back in the beginning during the honeymoon period. Do it now and keep doing it. That doesn’t mean you won’t have a disagreement every so often, but what I’m talking about here are changes in behaviors and habits, a shift in perspective, and a willingness to do so.
- Shut off all electronics. Imagine the intimate connections you can share with each other on the weekend if you don’t spend the evenings sitting in front of the laptop or the TV. There is a lot of time available for us to do what is important to us. We just have to make a few adjustments here and there for it to happen.
- Hold hands as much as possible. This creates that fresh connection each time you do it. It’s not only romantic, it feels good all over.
How do you want your relationship to go from here on out? Each one of you has the power to make it amazing, full of excitement, and full of love again; and working together toward the same goal, your power has a synergistic effect. So, dress up, say nice things, and miss work because you were too busy enjoying each other. Go ahead, fall in love all over again!