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What Makes Love Last?

When singles dream about being in a relationship, they seldom
dream of getting together with a partner for a few months or
years, only to break up and go on to find another partner.
Most singles dream of meeting the one person with whom they
can be in a relationship for a lifetime.

Those of us in relationships, even in relationships that may be
experiencing turbulence, hope we can be in our relationship for
a lifetime as well. We hope we can find a way to work out our
difficulties and make our love last.

People want and crave lifetime partnerships, but with one
caveat -- they want to be happy with the relationship.

Yet many of us have the same images stuck in our heads of what
lifetime relationships are really like -- distant, passionless
couples who live separate lives under the same roof.

These two images are at odds -- what we think we can get and
yet what we hope for when we embark on the journey of love.
Could there be a way to have what we want, a lifetime of love?

I believe there is a way to have love and passion that lasts a
lifetime, but the road there is not easy and requires courage
and perseverance. Actually, the road to a lifetime of love
requires many things and many ways of being that are
extraordinary. Let me tell you about them.

In Order to Have Lasting Love You Must...

1. Reframe how you look at relationships

Most of us think a relationship is ok when it is working and we
are happy. Once the relationship encounters difficulties,
however, we think we are in the wrong relationship. The truth is
that sometimes insurmountable difficulties do mean we are in the
wrong relationship. But relationship difficulties are a normal
part of being in a relationship. In fact, when you begin to have
a hard time some of the time, you know your relationship is
reaching a deeper level.

2. Learn to speak up

We are not trained to speak up when our feelings are hurt,
when we are angry or when we don't like what's going on. We are
trained to look the other way, to suppress our feelings, to let
the situation blow over. Yet if we don't speak up when our
feelings arise, the feelings will fester inside and cause
resentments. These resentments in turn will cause us to distance
and shut out our partner. There is no way around this -- you
must deal with your feelings, no matter how subtle, or they will
eat away at the relationship.

3. Learn to be your own person

Many people surrender who they are when they enter a
relationship. They surrender their hobbies, friends, wants,
needs, sometimes thoughts, likes, and dislikes. The idea is that
the more like their partner they become, the more harmony there
will be in the relationship and this will make love last.
Nothing can be further from the truth. Either you maintain and
enhance who you are, or the relationship will get stale, boring,
and angry.

4. Learn to grow and develop willingly, even eagerly

A relationship must be a dynamic entity in order to stay
viable. This means the two partners need to grow and develop,
growing their capacity to deal with more emotions, to deal with
deeper conversations, to look inside themselves more
effectively, etc. This is the one key behavior, or set of
behaviors, that will absolutely keep your relationship alive and

5. Learn how to create good feelings

We often think that good feelings in the relationship are
something that happens naturally if the relationship is working.
This is true some of the time. At other times, the way to deal
with relationship difficulties is to bring generosity, love,
compassion, trust, and understanding to bare on what's happening
between the two people. This is not the same as swallowing your
feelings or pretending they are not there. The process is one of
feeling your feelings, then rising up above them to also feel
for your partner. This creates a connection instead of distance
and keeps the relationship growing, rather than falling apart.

6. Learn how to maintain and deepen passion

Passion is both a reflection of how well the relationship is
doing, as well as the glue that keeps the two people together.
Without passion, a relationship is guaranteed to disintegrate.
How do you deepen passion? Keeping things lively and interesting,
innovation is certainly one way. Romance is another. Generosity
toward your partner in all aspects of life is yet another. One
important way to keep passion alive is to reveal rather than
hide what is inside of you to your partner, both in
and out of the bedroom.

7. Learn to take care of your own needs

There will be times in any relationship when your partner will
either be unwilling or unable to take care of your needs --
emotional, physical, etc. Your choices will be:

* To suffer about it and make your partner suffer for that later
* To get your needs met in a way that causes damage to your
relationship, such as an affair
* To find a way to temporarily take care of your wants or
needs, and/or
* To ask others to help with your needs in a healthy way

I am sure you can tell which of the choices above will promote
the health and well being of your relationship, and which
choices will help it disintegrate.

8. Learn to deal with emotional pain and discomfort

Emotional pain and discomfort is par for the course of a
relationship. To identify whether the pain is good and
productive, simply ask yourself if it's a part of your growth.
For example, the pain felt from having to confront a part of
yourself you don't like is good. Pain from being beaten up by
your partner is bad. The first must be embraced and experienced.
The second must be handled and the situation remedied immediately.

9. Learn to share what's inside of you

Many of us hide what's inside of us for fear of becoming
vulnerable. But this is exactly the way to make love last -- to
become increasingly vulnerable with our partners, increasingly
seen by our partners. Isn't that what you really want -- to be
seen, truly seen and loved? This is not possible unless you
reveal yourself.

Even if you are not completely embraced and loved for what you
reveal, it is better to keep delving deeply into yourself and to
be known as much as possible. Depth guarantees connection and
longevity of the relationship.

10. Learn to be courageous

It takes courage to speak your mind. It takes courage to keep
revealing yourself. It takes courage to take risks and explore
new parts of yourself, not knowing how your partner will react.
It takes courage to keep looking inside and growing. It takes
courage to do every single thing listed above. These maybe the
most courageous acts you will be asked to take in your lifetime. Yet
each one is necessary if you are to have the love you desire.

Your Relationship Coach,
Rinatta Paries

(c) Rinatta Paries. Do you know how to attract your ideal mate? Do you know how to build a fulfilling relationship, or how to reinvent yours to meet your needs? Relationship Coach Rinatta Paries can teach you the skills and techniques to attract and sustain long-term, healthy partnerships. Visit where you'll find quizzes, classes, advice and a free weekly ezine. Become a "true love magnet(tm)!"

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