So you found someone you love and who loves you back. Well played! Hopefully you like them enough to want to keep them around for a long time. Unfortunately, it can sometimes be a little too easy to fall into a rut, and to even mistake it for routine. Luckily, there are plenty of things you can do to show your love, keep the romance alive and make your beloved feel special.
1. Don’t be a cliché
Don’t do things you’re ‘supposed’ to because people say they are romantic. I realize that statement is a tad ironic considering that I’m writing an article on romance, but hear me out. If roses, chocolates and expensive dinners aren’t your thing, don’t do it! News flash, not every girl likes that stuff. I know I don’t. We’re not actually all the same. Take the time and effort to be romantic in a way the other person will appreciate. For the record, a game from my Steam wish list and some enchiladas will do nicely.
2. Do some chores
This may not sound particularly romantic, but saving your significant other from doing some of the domestic jobs they hate is damned sexy.
3. Cook their favourite meal
Food holds more power than people may think. Sure, we have to eat it to live, but it also has the ability to bring people together. Why else would most major holidays and festivities have a large food-related element? Nothing is better than coming home after a long day and finding someone has not only already taken care of dinner, but that the meal is one of your favorites.
4. Order in
No good at cooking? No problem, order in some delicious food from your partner’s favorite restaurant. I firmly believe that this is far more romantic than going out to eat. You’re in the comfort of your own home and can therefore relax. Plus, you don’t have to deal with any of the mouth breathers out there.
5. Go out for dinner
Maybe you two like going for dinner and would prefer that to eating in. Just make sure you take them somewhere they will love. Again, this doesn’t mean it has to be a cliché. If they prefer the Lebanese restaurant down the street to the French bistro, take them there. If this means they’ll be having garlic breath for the next three days, well then you’ve just proven your sacrificial love even more.
6. Spontaneous date!
Surprise your partner with a spontaneous, mostly unplanned date. Head somewhere and go with the flow, or perhaps take a random drive. Sometimes it’s nice just to break the routine of everyday life, just so long as you don’t end up in a House of Wax situation.
7. Talk to them
It can be easy to stop talking properly, especially in a long-term relationship. Maybe you’ve gotten too comfortable, or don’t feel like there’s much to say. Just try! You may find out something you never knew, which hopefully will be a positive thing, as opposed to finding out your first cousins or something.
8. Listen to them
It can be even easier to not listen properly when you have been with someone for a certain amount of time. You may not know it, but not listening properly can be really hurtful. Whether you think the topic isn’t that interesting or you feel like you’ve heard it all already, make the effort to listen. This is the person who is supposed to mean the most to you, why wouldn’t you care what they have to say?
9. Appreciate their advice
This can be anything from big life issues to smaller things, such a TV show recommendation. Trust me, it’s infuriating to recommend something to a partner, only to have them ignore or forget it and then come to you six months later with an “awesome show their friends recommended.” Don’t be that person. Appreciate the fact that they know you.
10. Engage in activities they like
Make the effort to at least try and appreciate some of the things they love, even if you’re not the biggest fan. It will show that you’re taking an interest, and sometimes you may even be pleasantly surprised. For example, I watch a whole lot more NBA than I ever expected to, but I’ve found myself actually liking it now. I’m not advocating that you should change who you are for someone, but trying new things isn’t bad.
Unless you partner is adverse to this, properly celebrate things like your anniversary. Again, maybe the urge to do this will diminish over time, but try igniting that flame again. If this person is the love of your life, shouldn’t you want to celebrate and make a big deal out of your relationship milestones? You can do this in any way that suits you both, the important thing is to show that other person how much having them in your life means to you.
12. Make their birthday special
Again, this is only recommended if they actually like birthdays. Make your partner feel like the most important person in the world on their birthday. Running down to the mall the day beforehand and picking up any old crud you can find and handing it to them in a plastic bag will not make them feel good about themselves. In fact, they may even question how much they truly mean to you. I’m not saying you need to spend a lot of (or even any) money, presents don’t have to be tangible. Just make sure that you show them that time, thought and love went into whatever you do.
13. Movie night
Have your very own movie marathon with some of your partner’s favorite flicks and snacks.
14. Just hang out
Does your partner have a boring day of errands to run? Go with them and rock it. You love each other, so surely you’ll be able to make it more enjoyable just by being together. Plus, saving them from a day of boring chores by themselves is pretty damn romantic in my book.
15. Put the devices down
This is particularly important if you’re out having dinner or doing a specific activity together. Not being able to get through a single evening without being glued to your iPhone not only kills the romance, it’s also quite insulting.
16. Make them breakfast
This is similar to the dinner idea, but coffee is involved, and caffeine makes everything better. If you can get away with it, surprise them with breakfast in bed. Sure, this is may be a cliché, but I prefer to think of it as a tried and true classic.
17. Discuss your fantasies
Show your partner you trust them by sharing your romantic and sexual fantasies with them, and let them do the same. Unless you’re a furry, they’re probably not going to get freaked out. It’s important to keep your sex life active and not let it get stale.
18. Act on the fantasies
I really hope this doesn’t need an explanation.
19. Kiss them
Just because you’ve been in a relationship for a long time doesn’t mean that kissing should go out the window. The sad fact is that fun make out sessions can diminish to quick, ‘see you later’ pecks. Make the effort to engage kisses with your partner, even on a daily basis. This will leave them feeling just as special and attractive as when you had your first kiss.
20. Have a bath together
This may not be doable for everyone, but if you have access to a bath, I highly recommend it. If you want to go for a more cuddly and romantic vibe than a sexy one, set up a laptop and watch a movie together in there. If you happen to have bathroom TV I only have this to say: What time can I come over?
21. Tell them that you love them
And I don’t mean in that mechanical, not thinking about it way.
22. Engage in inappropriate texting
Just because you’ve been together for awhile doesn’t mean you can’t have some fun and get excited by them. Make them look especially forward to coming home by sending some ‘not safe for work’ texts. It’s exciting and will make them feel attractive and desired. Hopefully the boss doesn’t see.
23. Look after each other during illness
If you’re partner is sick, do everything you can to make them comfortable. This shows how much you love and care about them, even when they look like death warmed up.
24. Buy a spontaneous gift
This can be anything from a video game to their favorite candy bar. The monetary value isn’t important, it’s the fact that you got them something “just because.”
25. Compliment them
Because it’s nice to be appreciated.
26. Don’t let the romance die
Getting comfortable with one another is fine, just don’t let the romance die off completely. You may not always be able to maintain the same butterflies you experienced on your first date, but you can sure as hell try to make your partner feel loved and special every day.