Original Illustration by Stephanie DeAngels
No matter how strong your relationship is, every couple experiences ups and downs, especially when it comes to keeping the spark alive in the bedroom. Northwestern University psychology professor and author of The All-or-Nothing Marriage Eli Finkel believes that this is not just normal, but it's almost unavoidable.
Since we look to our spouses for emotional support as well as sexual passion, "there's this interesting juxtaposition … we want to have a respectful, loving, warm, nurturing sort of connection, but we also want a little bit of naughtiness and impropriety," he explains in a video for Business Insider. "And reconciling those two things is difficult."
Of course, it isn't impossible, especially in light of what he calls "excellent research" on the importance of engaging in exciting activities with your partner in order to keep learning and growing together. "A lot of us default to engaging in comfortable sorts of activities together—sitting on the couch and watching some nice television for example," he explains. "But it doesn't tend to increase how much fire and passion we have in the relationship. What does that is engaging in novel—that is new and exciting—sorts of activities that we haven't tried before."
He recommends trying out something new and different like ballroom dancing, hiking, shucking oysters—things that really "get you out of the mundane reality of everyday life," he specifies. "This is one of the most promising recipes for helping to sustain a sense of fire and passion for the partner."
Head over to Business Insider for more, and read how to keep the spark alive in a long-distance relationship next.