Many relationships end in complete chaos, but why do some just fizzle out? Long-term relationships are hard work. In the beginning, there’s a clear excitement that makes it easy for you to put a lot of energy into it. However, as years pass, some relationships become boring, unenjoyable, and overly predictable. This is complacency.
With the amount of entertainment that we’re surrounded with, complacency is easy to fall into. This is because we have so many numbing agents available to us. Television, social media, and the internet in general make it very easy to shut off and even stay turned off. This isn’t to demonize those things, because they certainly are useful as well. However, in your relationship, you want to make sure that these forms of entertainment haven’t taken the place of conversation with your partner.
In long-term relationships, we tend to take for granted that we know all we need to know about the other person, but there is always more to the mystery. The mystery is both exciting and intimidating. It’s vulnerable. Yet some research suggests it’s the very thing that keeps a spark alive in our relationships.
There is only one way to tap into the mystery and this is to “show up”. This means, rather than dissociate and stay in silence, it’s important to say something and inquire. It’s also important to listen and stay present. Your partner will be more willing to let you in on the mystery if you show interest. If you don’t, it could be so invalidating that your partner will stay out of that territory altogether. Thus, only telling you the things that you already know, and that don’t go into the mystery at all.
A little mystery can help to create excite in a relationship that has lost its spark. Pay attention to your opportunities to step into that space, notice what you can learn about your partner, and your relationship can be well on its way back to building life dreams together.