How deep is your love?

Aloha Cary,

My husband and I will be retiring in a few years. Our kids are busy raising their kids, and even though life overall is good, I feel we’re missing that spark we used to have. We are in need of a relationship “pick me up.” Any suggestions?

Return to Love, Poipu

Aloha Return to Love,

The good news is a relationship tune up is easy to incorporate. As long as you and your partner desire and choose to take action, the juiciness will return. The situation you speak of happens to most couples in a long-term relationship, so thank you for being transparent. You are not alone.

If today was your last day to live with your husband, what would you do? What would you say? Would you want to share quiet moments together? Maybe hugging, caressing, kissing, massaging, dancing cheek to cheek, holding each other’s hands while you walk in your favorite place? Would you look deeply into each other’s eyes and tell each other how much you love one another and are grateful for their friendship, kindness, thoughtfulness and the joy of being their lover? Would you call friends and family and tell them how much you love them? If so, great. Do this. Every day.

When it comes down to the things that matter most in a relationship, it’s usually these relatively simple things. Tell your man how much he means to you from your heart. Invite him to do the same.

When you touch each other and express your feelings of love, oxytocin, a naturally occurring chemical gets released in your brain and you feel a warm, blissful joy run throughout your body.

Neuroscience has confirmed that our brain will release oxytocin whether we are doing these loving actions or just thinking about them. So sending your partner a cute text is keeping you both in a yummy vibe. This action will assist in moving you both out of complacency and into reawakening the sweet feelings you experienced when you first met, making it easier to transform any undesirable patterns and being more alive and vibrant.

Here are some ideas to consider:

1) Look deeply in each other’s eyes when going to sleep or waking up and say, “I love you.”

2) Take time to vision and write down your dreams, goals and passions you want to explore individually and together. Then share them.

3) Deepen your spirituality with yoga, meditation or going to places of worship.

4) Discuss openly your fears, insecurities, worries and support each other on transforming these issues, which will create more intimacy (into-me-you-see) and joyous moments. Seek out professional assistance if needed.

5) Create a travel bucket list. Places you both would like to see and experience, like a culinary class in Venice, Italy, flamenco classes in Granada, Spain, or go on a humpback whale cruise in Antarctica.

6) Have an evening ritual you both enjoy: Play games, discuss a new book, take a class, learn a language, go out with friends, volunteer at different organizations, massage each other, or take up a new sport.

7) Leave funny, zany, rhyming voicemails for each other. Mail him a greeting card from a secret admirer, requesting to meet him at a romantic restaurant. Look for the “lady in red.” Leave a note on the dashboard saying, “Thanks for making my days more enjoyable, I can’t wait to wag my tail with excitement when I see you later.”

8) Bring out the laughter. As kids, most of our time was spent playing and having fun. Why not as adults? Give yourself the permission to play. Make forts out of cushions or sheets, camp out, or on a rainy day, set up the tent in your living room, use flashlights to make shadow puppets or cook dinner by candlelight. Have a water balloon catch at the beach. Continue to discover new joys about each other.

9) Listen to songs like Ryan Hiraoka’s “Live Everyday” or the Bee Gee’s “How Deep Is Your Love?” for daily inspiration. Have fun making your own playlist together.

There’s enough serious adult decisions and concerns we all deal with on a day-to-day basis. By incorporating some of these ideas into your life, you’re bound to deepen your love.

Good luck having the best time of your life every day.

Malama Pono,

Cary

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Cary Valentine, CRC, is author of “In Love Forever – 7 Secrets to a Joyous, Juicy Relationship,” relationship expert & wedding officiant. He can be reached at Facebook.com/InLoveForeverCaryValentine, youtube.com/watch?v=iWE_1ma8dvM and (808) 346-6652

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