Valentine’s Day might be done and dusted, but for some of us, it seems to never end. We’re talking about the people who are still in the honeymoon phase of their relationship. Honeymooners feel like they’re on top of the world. They treasure the time they spend together, including all of the first memories they make: a first kiss, a first dance, a first declaration of love. They wish that they could freeze time, if only to spend eternity wrapped in each other’s arms. It’s only after many months together that they’ll start getting comfortable. There’s nothing wrong with being comfortable - in fact, in many ways, it is a good thing. But comfort can be dangerous once you start to forget how much you love someone. In order to help you survive the sometimes-rocky terrain of your own relationship, we’ve compiled a list of 5 things we can learn from those happy honeymooning couples.
1. Don’t sweat the small stuff
So your partner is late to an event? Instead of haranguing them, a honeymooner would try to empathise. They would understand the challenges their partner is facing at work, and would welcome them with open arms once they arrive, even if it’s an hour late. A honeymooner is able to differentiate between the big stuff and the small stuff. Not that they’d let their partner walk all over them, but they simply wouldn’t let a minor inconvenience jeopardise the strong connection that they enjoy in their relationship.
2. Hug it out
Honeymooners have a reputation for public displays of affection. They hug at the bus stop, they hold hands while walking down the street, and sometimes they even make out in the corner booth of the crowded restaurant. Their touches are not limited to the sexual; even something as simple as placing a hand on their partner’s knee communicates a great deal of trust and affection. Scientists have researched the power of physical touch, which seems to be linked to our inherently social nature and need for human connection.
The next time you have a disagreement with your partner, see how it feels to embrace them. Does it change your emotional dynamic? Do you feel more love and empathy for them? Are you more inclined to have a calm discussion?
This lesson is less about being a honeymooner and more about being a decent human being. Try to be in tune with how your partner is feeling, and make sure you don’t overstep their boundaries. When they appear uncomfortable in any way, stop what you’re doing and work with them to rectify the situation. This applies to everything, from sex to jokes, and even personal space. Anna Kendrick reportedly broke up with her partner because he continued to tickle her even after she asked him to stop.
Respect goes both ways, and if you find yourself in a position where your needs are not being met, you will need to assert yourself. First and foremost, you will need to treat yourself with love and respect in order to effectively communicate your boundaries to others.
4. Funny is sexy
According to scientific research, people who enjoy being teased in their relationship show greater appreciation and sexual satisfaction with their partners. Banter is the new foreplay, and many psychologists believe that the reason why so many of us are attracted to funny mates is because humour is an evolutionary sign of intelligence. Being hilarious is pretty much a reproductive mechanism! If that doesn’t get your engines revving, I don’t know what will.
Honeymooners intuitively understand how important it is to use humour to woo their partner. Because their relationship is fairly new, they consistently put their best foot forward, and try to laugh together as much as possible.
5. Just keep dating, dating, dating
Any honeymooner will tell you that spending quality time with their partner is the best part of their week. Even if you don’t have time to go on dates every second day, it’s important to set aside at least some time each month for deep conversations and memory-making. Little gestures can also be very significant, like preparing breakfast in bed, or making a playlist of favourite songs together. This can help you to sustain that magical sense of romance and connection that drew you to each other in the first place.