Anyone who has experienced a long-term relationship knows just how the comfortable, yet loving, routines we create together can sometimes put a pause on the romance. Throw other aspects of life into the equation and it becomes even harder to keep things lit – but this can easily be remedied.
Don’t get me wrong, I love having a routine, especially in my relationship. However, I’ve learned that it’s essential to keep things spicy and the romance alive. After awhile, it’s so easy to get lost in our daily habits and that reflecting in date nights.
If you’re anything like me, you may not hesitate to pay a visit to your favorite restaurant (time and time again), our top spots in the city, or even wear that cute, flirty outfit. But taking a chance and avoiding the usual can lead to a more connected, refreshing relationship. Here are a few interesting ideas to keep things exciting.
1. Try out a new restaurant.
This may sound like something pretty easy to do, but experiencing something new together is the perfect opportunity to throw a wrench into that regular routine. I enjoy going to sites like OpenTable for helpful restaurant recommendations, but the web is filled with endless tip lists and blogs that can provide you with the best place for your next food date. Simply make a reservation, add a bit of mystery by visiting a place in an area of your city you don’t frequent enough, sit back and let the rest of your night handle itself. This is definitely how I come across new eateries, bookstores, and coffee shops in Atlanta.
2. Plan a weekend getaway.
One of my absolute favorite things to do is go on weekend trips. I think we can all agree a little refresher is sometimes needed. I cannot say enough just how special and rejuvenating a weekend, long weekend, week, or any amount of time is as a couple – you truly need to experience it yourself to witness the electricity behind it and to toss up those everyday habits you and your partner might’ve fallen victim to.
3. Buy a small, thoughtful token.
If you’re familiar with The 5 Love Languages, then you know that gift giving doesn’t have to be some materialistic thing. In actuality, it’s supported by love, effort, and thoughtfulness. But a lot of times, it can be one of the hardest things to remember to do. While I’d like to think my memory is superb, it’s not. So nowadays, I like to keep a running list of gift ideas in my phone of things that my boyfriend casually mentions in conversation. You can keep track of what your partner wants, too – a particular book they’ve been wanting to read, the new pair of shoes they’ve been dying to have, or maybe they need a replacement to something, make note of it and surprise them.
4. Have a date night in.
Not every date has to take place outside of the four walls of your home. Knock out the chores, finish up work, and put away the phones. Devote all of your attention to each other and revel in the moment.
5. Write & leave sticky notes.
Life is a whirlwind, and it can be hard to connect with your partner throughout the day. A way we try to minimize these feelings when time is limited is by leaving one another handwritten notes. Place a note inside your partner’s clothing drawer, on the bathroom mirror, in their work bag, or on the fridge. While a text is convenient and fits today’s digital age, I think handwritten notes are timeless and the perfect touch of romance. Might I add that this is aligned with another 1 of the 5 love languages – words of affirmation!
6. Test out a new recipe together.
Similar to the restaurant thing, I am certainly a creature of habit when it comes to making the same dishes over and over again. After a long day at work, it’s so easy to just put something that you’re familiar with on the stove. I mean, you’ve probably mastered quite a few dishes at this point, right? But if you love food (like me and many others), it could be worth your while to try something new and delicious. I’ve dedicated an entire Pinterest board to meal ideas and it’s constantly growing. If you’re in need of a new recipe, there are plenty of food blogs on the web that provide thorough step-by-step details and result in masterpieces.