Have you ever felt like your relationship has hit a consistent rut? Maybe you’ve been together for years, and feel like you’re doing the same thing over and over again?
Research suggests that sharing new and exciting experiences significantly improves one’s connection to his or her significant other. The reason behind that is simple. When one identifies an experience as pleasurable, neurotransmitters dopamine and norepinephrine are released, and bonding occurs.
That's partially why a common suggestion to “just go out,” to dinner or to the movies sometimes doesn’t cut it to re-make or continue growing a strong bond. To truly fall in love all over again, a couple needs to create adventures that are truly novel and exciting.
So with that said, each week I will give you a deliberate plan to refuel your romantic connection with your partner:
Week 1 | Identify what you both find exhilarating in your personal life.
Is it experiencing new food flavors, or is it going for a jog? Take an inventory of the top five things that you find most exciting. Ask your partner to do the same. Share these together, and try and find ways to include him/her in it.
Konstantin Lukin, Ph.D., is a licensed clinical psychologist in Ridgewood and Hoboken, NJ. He has extensive clinical and research experience spanning individuals of all ages, in both inpatient and outpatient settings. He specializes in men’s issues, couple’s counseling, and relationship problems. His therapeutic approach focuses on providing support and practical feedback to help patients effectively address personal challenges. He integrates complementary modalities and techniques to offer a personalized approach tailored to each patient. He has been trained in cognitive-behavioral, dialectical behavior, schema-focused, and emotionally focused therapy, and has also been involved with research projects throughout his career, including two National Institute of Mental Health-funded studies. He is a member of the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies, New Jersey Psychological Association, Northeast Counties Association of Psychologists, New York State Psychological Association, The International Centre for Excellence in Emotionally Focused Therapy, The New York Center for Emotionally Focused Therapy, the International OCD Foundation, the Association for Contextual Behavioral Science (ACSB) and a regular contributor to Psychology Today.