48 Ways to Make Your Long-Term Relationship Feel Like the Honeymoon Phase Again
There are so many beautiful things about being in a long-term relationship with someone you love, who loves you. Hitting meaningful relationship milestones together, learning more about yourself, from your attachment style to your love language, watching each other grow — there are many experiences you just won't want to miss. But there are also times you may find yourself asking how to spice up a long-term relationship.
Feeling a little stagnant in a long-term relationship is totally normal, and could be a result of an event — like having kids or moving in together — or just something that happens from time to time. In some cases, it can even be a symptom that you're entering a healthy new stage of your relationship — like moving out of the "honeymoon" phase and into something more stable and committed. The good news is, stable doesn't have to mean boring, and there are plenty of answers to the question of how to spice up a relationship you love being in.
The key is being open to rediscovering new things about yourself or your partner. So, here are some tips on how to spice things up in a relationship, in order to keep the romance alive and strong for many more years to come.
— Additional reporting by Michele Bird, Taylor Andrews, and Mirel Zaman
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Plan a Date Night
But make it a special one. Oftentimes, long-term relationship couples get so lost in their routines, they forget to make time for each other. Prioritize a night out by doing your favorite things, or, stick to the 2-2-2- rule: go on a date every two weeks, go out for a weekend away every two months, and go out on a vacation for a week every two years.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Take a Trip Together
Visiting a city together you've never been to before will bring a newness to your relationship — you'll have more things to talk about, more memories to make, and more places to see.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Try a New Hobby
Really, it can be anything, but try to do something that gets you two working together in a productive capacity. This will build your communication skills and maybe even problem-solving skills, too, depending on the hobby.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Go on a Double Date
Friends make everything better. If you're finding it hard to make friends as an adult (honestly, same) check out these apps designed to help you make friends and connect with people with similar interests as you.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Surprise Your Significant Other
Whether it's giving them an unexpected gift that made you think of them or taking them to their favorite sports team's game on a surprise date, surprises bring novelty to a relationship and keep them exciting.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Prioritize Your "Me" Time
Learning to make time for yourself can help you become a better partner for your significant other and help you both avoid codependency. Don't be afraid to give yourself space to recenter yourself and the relationship.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Take Time to Communicate Your Feelings
The key to a lasting relationship is being open and honest about your feelings. Learning how to communicate effectively with your partner will make a long-term relationship easier to navigate. If this is something you and your partner struggle with, booking a couple's therapy appointment may be useful.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Have Fun Discussing the Future
Making sure your futures align is a great way to ensure your relationship will last. Plus, you can have fun with it, too, by imagining what your futures would like if you won the lottery or lived in a different decade.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Support Each Other's Dreams
It proves that they can count on you through thick and thin, and though it's important to maintain your own boundaries and have your own goals, supporting your partner's is a surefire way to have a loving relationship.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Make a Bucket List Together
Maybe it's a sex bucket list of things you've wanted to try but haven't gotten around to. Maybe it's a bucket list of things you'd like to accomplish before reaching a certain age. Whatever it is, spending quality time checking off each other's bucket lists is an easy way to bring the two of your closer together.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Try Something New in the Bedroom
Not sure where to start? Try a "yes, no, maybe" list, like this one here. Of the sexual activities you're interested in, write "yes," of the sexual activities you're not interested in, write "no," and of the sexual activities you want to talk more about, write "maybe." Then, talk it out with your partner and compare your chart. When you're done, you'll have a new list of "yes" activities to try out together.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Get a Couple's Massage
Ultimate relaxation will help alleviate unnecessary stress and anxiety in your relationship.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Team Up in the Kitchen and Cook a New Recipe
Novelty is great for couples in long-term relationships, so doing something as simple as cooking a meal you always order for take-out can add some spice to your routine.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Do Something to Show You Care
Use their love language to come up with something thoughtful you can do for them. If their love language is physical touch, maybe you can plan an at-home massage. If theirs is gifts, maybe you can pick up a pair of socks with their favorite dog breed on them.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Remind Them That They're Beautiful
Looking at all of you who have a partner that loves words of affirmation. Making someone's day could be as simple as a compliment.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Have a Deep Conversation About a Hot-Button Topic
Healthy debate is good for the soul. Just remember that the key word here is "healthy," in that, regardless of your opposing views, you remain respectful of your partner's opinion.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Respect Each Other's Boundaries
This seems simple, but it's a big one because respect goes a long way in a relationship. As for what it looks like? It's up to you and your partner, so definitely open up the conversation on this one, folks.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Sign Up For a Class Together
Learning to do something new together will help you two find focus in other areas of your life. Plus, it will be a new activity to try together. You can bond over the challenge.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Let Go of Grudges
This builds resentment in a relationship. Of course, it's healthy to bring up issues with your partner, but if there is something you're still processing or you have lingering feelings about after a previous fight, seeking a therapist may be a helpful option.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Still Make Time For Your Friends and Family
Having a life outside the your relationship allows you to be a better partner. When you don't have your own circle of support, the partnership can begin to feel suffocating for both parties.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Do an Activity You've Never Done Together
Being spontaneous is highly encouraged, as it keeps things fun and interesting.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Take a Breather After a Fight
This goes back to the whole "respect your partner" thing. Some people need time to process a fight so that they don't act impulsively.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Joke Around With Each Other
Laughing is good for the soul. Maintaining a relationship that is equal parts serious with equal parts fun is vital.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Put Effort Into the Relationship
No one likes one-sided relationships. Though you can't always expect relationships to be 50/50 all the time, since some people may need more effort at certain points in their life, make sure you're putting in the work to keep your relationship from feeling neglected.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Play a Board Game
Sometimes a little healthy competition is just what you need.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Recreate Your First Date
This will put you in your feels and remind you what made you fall in love with your partner in the first place.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Have More Sex
Why? Because not only can sex feel really, really good, but having an orgasm releases endorphins that will quite literally put you in a better mood.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Talk About an Issue You've Been Sweeping Under the Rug
Open and honest communication is the best type of communication. If something has been bothering you, schedule a time to check-in with your partner about it and discuss.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Designate Time to Listen to Your Partner
Offering your ear when your partner had a rough day at work can make all the difference between a bad day and a bad-but-getting-better day.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Be Patient With Each Other
Try to understand where your partner is coming from when you're feeling frustrated — even if they're running 15 minutes late because they had to put eyeliner on.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Plan a Spontaneous Getaway
Everyone looks forward to a vacation — whether it's an island getaway or some time out in the woods. This will feel like a healthy reset for your relationship.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Write a Romantic Letter or Note
Because communication nowadays is done mainly through texting, put in some effort by writing your partner a love note. Tell them how much you appreciate them and what you love most about them.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Make Them Breakfast in Bed
Cooking is the way to anyone's heart, but cooking breakfast for them while they're still in bed? Yeah, that just may be the way to keep someone's heart.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Plan a Date Night From Home
Date night doesn't have to be anything extravagant or super expensive. Making time for each other and your relationship is what matters.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Plan Something Special For Your Anniversary
You could revisit the place your first met, or plan a beach picnic. Either way, going all out for your anniversary will remind you that your relationship is worth celebrating.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Say "I Love You" More
When you're in a long-term relationship, the words "I love you" might feel like something you only say in passing or right before you leave each other. So instead of making this your routine, to which the words feel like they have no sentimental value, take some time out of your day to hug your partner, look them in the eyes, and tell them you love them. It will make all the difference.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Clean the House Together
Not only is cleaning extremely therapeutic, but it also allows you to connect with your partner. Turn on some music or a podcast, start in the bathroom, and spend some quality time together while simultaneously marking "clean the toilet" off your to-do list.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Flirt With Each Other
In the beginning stages of dating, flirting is essential. But as time goes on and you become more comfortable with each other, the flirting begins to decrease. However, making an active effort to flirt with your partner again can add some much-needed spice to your relationship.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Focus on the Positives of Your Relationship
Remember why you love and chose to be with your partner. Though you may have hit the "we're fighting like an old married couple" phase of the relationship, focus on the good parts of it instead of dwelling on the negative.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Unplug For a Night
No TVs, no phones, no computers. This is the perfect and most efficient way to spend quality time with your partner. Use the time to check-in with each other and make sure all your needs and wants are being met.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Brush Off the Small Stuff
When you spend a lot of time with someone, it can be easy to feel annoyed more easily by their behavior. Though it's important to openly communicate about things that bother you, it could be a good idea to ignore the fact that they didn't fold a towel the way that you would've liked them to fold a towel.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Do Something You're Scared of Together
This is a great way to experience an adrenaline rush together, and honestly, all that excitement sounds like an amazing precursor to sex later in the evening.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Show Some PDA
If both partners are comfortable, loving on your partner while out in public can make them feel wanted and appreciated.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Encourage Each Other to Take on New Challenges
Long-term relationships can sometimes feel "comfortable," and while there's nothing wrong with comfortability, it's important that you encourage each other to take on new goals.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Take a Bubble Bath Together
There's something extremely intimate about being in water together with your significant other. So sit back, turn on some music, and enjoy some time in the bath with your boo.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Dress Up For Date Night
Or better yet, have fun with it and encourage your partner to pick out an outfit for you. This will feel ~spicy~ and add an element to date night that may have you both itching to take off the clothes you originally picked out.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Read a Book Together and Talk About It
Reading a book together is a great way to learn new perspectives and find new content to discuss with each other.
How to Spice Up a Relationship: Never Forget Why You Fell in Love
Appreciate the amount of time you've spent with your partner. After all, it's likely they're your person and you don't want to loose sight of why you love them.