Have you ever given up the things you love—a passion for travel or sushi because your partner didn’t love doing those things too? Do you worry about loving someone else and leaving yourself, as a result? Here’s the thing about good, true love: it never requires you to leave, YOU.

The right partner in your life—someone who loves you for you (instead of the person he’s hoping you will become) doesn’t want you to give up a thing. In fact, he wants to be brought into your world. Maybe he won’t want to watch chick flicks with you every night of the week (especially when the game is on) but he will want you to continue doing the things you love.  The happier you are, the happier he will be. The more personally satisfied you are, the happier he will be!

When your goal is creating a future with the one you love, staying connecting is key. It’s not just doing things together (a dinner out here, going to a party together there…) but every single day. There’s no one way to do this. There’s no one pathway to increasing that emotional bond with the one you love, but here are some ways to heighten the connection:

  • Don’t respond, but react. When he feels appreciated, the bond will grow. No matter whether you are female or male, everyone has the same basic needs. Everyone needs affection, love, and appreciation. Everyone wants to feel needed. Make your partner instantly feel closer to you through communication. All it takes is responding—instead of reacting. Responding is achieved through the art of active listening, asking questions and offering input through kindness and understanding. Reacting is often based off of your own attitudes or judgments, and often has nothing to do with them. Respond more, increase the bond, and skyrocket your relationship to a whole new level.
  • Show support for the things he loves (it’ll mean the world to him.) There’s two people in this relationship—and it most certainly takes two to tango. Make big plans for the upcoming weekend, but make it about him. What does he love to do? Is it ball games? Playing sports? Is he into music festivals or crawfish boils? Make plans to do something he loves, and be genuine about it. With just a little effort, it will amount to huge payback!
  • Apply the ‘five minute curiosity’ strategy to your relationship. This is one of the best tricks for boosting an ‘instant’ connection with your mate. Expecting when the two of you are both home from work to instantly become drawn to one another and spend every second together? The reality is, his work life (as well as yours) is a day packed to the brim with responsibility and stress. Give him time to relax, and then get ‘curious’ about what his day was filled with. Sit down and listen to him. How did his morning start off? How did his presentation go?

When you’re in the right relationship for you, love never comes with a price.  Enjoy each moment with your ‘plus one’ by merging your lives together, day by day. It’s worth the payoff-which is everlasting love, passion, intimacy and partnership.

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