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8 Ways To Cultivate More Love in Life

8 Ways To Cultivate More Love in Life

As we grow more connected to the outside world, we also paradoxically distance ourselves from the “real” people right in front of us. Between Twitter, Facebook, email, and the ever-increasing prevalence of the computer in our lives, it’s becoming increasingly rare to have a face-to-face conversation about anything at all, let alone anything of real substantive value to ourselves and our loved ones.

I advocate a “back to basics” approach that cuts off the ongoing encroachment of technology and reminds us that we’re not cyborgs, but fully functioning human beings. Here are 8 ways to cultivate more love in life that will help you “ground” yourself and interact more completely with your life, instead of just reporting on it on social media.

1) Take a technology detox.

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technology

    You mean…

    Yes. I mean.

    Take a full day. That’s 24 hours. From the time you get up to the time you go to bed, no computer, cell phone, email, or “just popping on to check out what Miley Cyrus did today.” None. Zip. Zero. Nada. Instead of watching TV, radio (music’s still okay, but try to steer clear of the computer to get at it, hmm?), or playing on the computer, take a walk, call some friends, or do something‒ANYTHING!‒but avoid messing around with social media or anything that might somehow tempt you to do so. Post a sign if you have to, so all your friends will know that NO, you haven’t seen Charlene’s latest Facebook update about her breakup with her boyfriend. You can catch up tomorrow. Promise.

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    2) Read a good book.

    This is perhaps one of the most overlooked “simple pleasures” we have. A Kindle’s great, a PDF will do in a pinch, but there is just no substitute for the feel and smell of wood pulp in your hands and actually, physically turning the pages of a book. Many people say that, although e-reading is great, there’s just something about being able to physically touch a book that gives a deeper connection to it. I don’t know how it works, since I’m a writer and not a psychologist, but I can tell you with absolute, 100% certainty that it does. Make today the day you rediscover an old favorite, or support your local independent bookstore and see about scoring some new ones!

    3) Meditate on who you are.

    meditate

      It’s almost a cliche that although we can look back through Facebook and tell you what we ate for breakfast three years, two months, sixteen days and ten hours ago, we have no idea who we really are today. You can counter this tendency by taking a little time to quietly ponder who you are and who you’ve become. Do you like what you see? Are some changes in order? This is a great way to inject some love into your life, because if you don’t like who you are, now is the time to change it. Not on New Year’s Eve, not next week. If you really want to change, the time is now.

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      4) Remind yourself that you, and others, are worthy of love and attention.

      If you feel like you’re being ignored a lot, ask yourself if you’re giving what you’d like to receive. If you are, then it’s time to seek out a new social circle, because the people you’re hanging out with are clearly too self-absorbed. If you’re not, then this is a good time to start giving out what you want to receive. You’ll be liked a lot more, and people will be more likely to pay attention to you when you need them as well.

      5) Ask, “How was your day?”and LISTEN to the answer.

      How To Be A Good Listener That Others Want To Talk To

        “How was your day?” is almost a pro forma question these days. We hear the answer, but don’t really listen because we just can’t wait to get on to the really important topic of OUR day. if you’re not willing to listen to the answer, don’t ask the question; conversely, if you’re going to ask, you owe it to yourself and the other person to listen. Otherwise you’re just wasting your breath asking, and they’re wasting their breath telling you. You can tell if this is happening in your life because when you ask, the other person is reluctant to say anything at all. The more love, attention, and respect you give, the more compassion you’ll receive.

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        6) Touch.

        beach_kiss_250x167.jpg

          This is such a simple thing, but too often it goes ignored. The act of touching conveys much more than simple physical contact. It is a sign that you care about someone enough to get in their space, and to allow them into yours as well. Human beings need touch in order to feel secure and comfortable; it is a social and spiritual act. This can be a friendly or amorous touch, familial or comradely, but everything from a high-five to sex with your lover shows that you care. If you feel lonely, isolated, or unloved, try touching someone you care about. You may be surprised where it leads.

          7) Schedule a game night.

          No, I don’t mean watching football, hockey, or soccer. I mean an old-fashioned table game. Whether you like to play dice, cards, Monopoly, or even beer pong, a game night is a good way to break up the routine and allow some real socialization with friends or family (Sorry, online versions don’t count here). This is an excellent way to reconnect with others and disconnect from the Internet for a night. You’ll be surprised at how much warmer and more cared-for you’ll feel at the end of the evening, too!

          8) Watch the sunset.

          20090107-sunset1

            There are just some things that cannot be simulated or duplicated. Why not take your lover out around sunset and watch the sun go down? Not only is it a great, intimate way to spend a little time, but it will also help you think about some of life’s bigger questions, like why the things we place such a premium on really don’t matter much in the end. This is a perfect time to tell your partner, “I love you and I’m so thankful that you’re in my life.” You’ll also feel more at peace, which is always a worthy outcome!

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            Last Updated on October 17, 2019

            How to Spend More Quality Time with Your Partner

            How to Spend More Quality Time with Your Partner

            You see your partner every single day. They are the first person you talk to in the morning and the last person you kiss goodnight.

            But does seeing each other day in and day out equal a healthy relationship? Not necessarily.

            Spending quality time with your partner is the best way to ensure your relationship stays healthy and strong. This means going above and beyond sitting together while you watch Netflix or going out for the occasional dinner. You deserve more from your relationship – and so does your spouse!

            What does quality time mean? It means spending time with your spouse without interruption. It’s a chance for you to come together and talk. Communication will build emotional intimacy and trust.

            Quality time is also about expressing love in a physical way. Not sex, necessarily (but that’s great, too!) but through hand-holding, cuddling, caressing, and tickling. Studies show that these displays of affection will boost partner satisfaction.[1]

            So how do you spend quality time with your partner? Here are 13 relationship tips on making the most out of your time with your partner.

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            1. Recognize the Signs

            If you want a healthy relationship, you have to learn how to recognize the signs that you need to spend more quality time together.

            Some telltale signs include:

            • You’re always on your phones.
            • You value friendships or hobbies over quality time with your spouse.
            • You aren’t together during important events.
            • You are arguing more often or lack connection.
            • You don’t make plans or date nights.
            • You’re not happy.

            If you are experiencing any of these relationship symptoms, know that quality time together can reverse the negative effects of the signs above.

            2. Try New Things Together

            Have you ever wanted to learn how to play an instrument or speak another language? How about skydive or ballroom dance?

            Instead of viewing these as solo hobbies and interests, why not involve your partner?

            Trying new activities together builds healthy relationships because it encourages spouses to rely on one another for emotional and physical support.

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            Shared hobbies also promote marital friendship, and the Journal of Happiness Studies found that marital satisfaction was twice as high for couples who viewed each other as best friends.[2]

            3. Schedule in Tech-Free Time

            Your phone is a great way to listen to music, watch videos, and keep up-to-date with friends and family. But is your phone good for your relationship?

            Many couples phone snub, or ‘phub’, one another. Studies show that phubbing can lower relationship satisfaction and increase one’s chances of depression.[3]

            Reduce those chances by removing distractions when spending quality time together and showing your partner they have your full attention.

            4. Hit the Gym as a Couple

            One way you can spend more time together as a couple is by becoming workout partners. Studies show that couples are more likely to stay with their exercise routine if they work out together.[4] Couples also work out harder than they would solo. One study found that 95 percent of couples who work out together maintained weight loss compares to the 66 percent of singles who did.[5]

            Join a gym, do at-home couples’ workouts, try couples yoga, hit the hiking trails, or get your bikes out. No matter which way you choose to exercise, these healthy activities can promote a healthy relationship.

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            5. Cook Meals Together

            Pop open a bottle of wine or put some romantic music on while you get busy – in the kitchen, of course!

            One of the best relationship tips for spending quality time together when you both have busy schedules is to cook meals together.[6]

            Spice things up and try and prepare a four-course meal or a fancy French dish together. Not only is this a fun way to spend your time together, but it also promotes teamwork.

            If all goes well, you’ll have a romantic date night meal at home that you prepared with your four hands. And if the food didn’t turn out the way you’d hoped, you are guaranteed to have a laugh and create new memories together.

            6. Have a Regular Date Night

            Couples experience a greater sense of happiness and less stress when they are spending quality time together.[7] One of the biggest relationship tips for a healthy partnership is to include a date night in your weekly routine.

            The National Marriage Project found that having a weekly date night can make your relationship seem more exciting and helps prevent relationship boredom.[8] It also lowers the probability of divorce, improves your sex life, and increases healthy communication.

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            Some great ideas for what to do on your date night include:

            • Have a movie marathon – Gather up your favorite flicks and cuddle up on the couch.
            • Play games together – Cards, board games, video games, and other creative outlets are a fun way to spend quality time together.
            • Recreate your first date – Go back to that restaurant and order the same meal you did when you first got together. You can spice up your evening by pretending you’re strangers meeting for the first time and see how sexy the night gets.
            • Plan a weekend getaway – There’s nothing better than traveling with the one you love.
            • Dinner and a movie – A classic!
            • Try a new restaurant – Make it your mission to rate and try all of the Mexican restaurants/Irish pubs/Italian trattorias in your area.
            • Have a long sex session – Intimacy promotes the release of the oxytocin hormone which is responsible for a myriad of great feelings.[9]

            Here’re even more date night ideas for your reference: 50 Unique and Really Fun Date Ideas for Couples

            Final Thoughts

            The benefits of spending quality time together are endless. Here are just some of the ways it can contribute to a healthy relationship:

            • Improves emotional and physical intimacy
            • Lowers divorce rates
            • Improves communication
            • Reduces marital boredom
            • Bonds couples closer
            • Improves friendship
            • Boosts health
            • Reduces stress

            These are all excellent reasons to start making date night a regular part of your week.

            It’s easy to have a healthy relationship when you set aside dedicated time to share with your spouse. Try new things together, make your spouse your workout buddy, and look for innovative ways to be close and connected.

            These relationship tips will bring great benefits to your marriage.

            Featured photo credit: Allen Taylor via unsplash.com

            Reference

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