Most relationships go through phases. But that doesn't mean that, after the initial honeymoon phase where we're riding that biochemical high of love, relationships are supposed to become boring or passionless. If your relationship has lost its spark, that's something to take an honest look at and see if something needs to shift. Here are just a few reasons some relationships lose their spark after a while and how to get the spark back:
1. You're not sharing your whole self.
True intimacy is all about letting someone penetrate you (emotionally!), and you penetrate them right back. If you hold things back from your partner and spare them your deepest truth by telling white lies—or outright lies, even with the best intentions—that dishonesty mars your connection.
Radical honesty is bold. You throw your cards on the table to honor who you are and ask for what you really want.
Ever notice how after a deep, raw, honest conversation with your partner, you can't keep your hands off each other? Let your partner see you. All of you. Tell the truth, even if it scares you.
2. You don't prioritize sex.
Sexual energy is an immense power source that you can tap into to boost your physical, emotional, and spiritual vitality as a couple. If one or both partners isn't happy with their shared sex life—whether it's not enough sex, too much pressure, or just not the type of sex that you each really want—your connection will likely suffer. Having a mutually satisfying sexual life together, whatever that means to each of you, is important to creating warmth, spark, and aliveness in the relationship.
Think of your bedroom as your sanctuary to reconnect and rejuvenate. Commit to working on your sex life the way you do any other area of your growth, such as nutrition, health, or fitness. If sex isn't something you two tend to do spontaneously, schedule it in. If the sex you're having isn't great for one or both people, see how you can explore what turns you on as individuals and how to strengthen your sexual connection with each other.
3. You don't have enough quality time apart.
Even though you're a couple, you still need time and space to pursue those things that feed you as an individual. If you aren't being true to yourself, you are less attractive to your partner.
It can be easy to sacrifice your deeper needs for the sake of your relationship, but your soul food and the things that make your heart sing bring you deep fulfillment. When you are revitalized, you bring that juiciness back into your relationship.
It's the careful balance of closeness and distance that creates erotic tension. Play with it.
4. You buy into the idea that after two years, it's all downhill.
There's a misconception that after a few months or a few years, there's a romantic drop-off where you stop being sexually or romantically interested in each other. But research shows that the relationships where passion fades away after a while are the ones where the couple initially held the belief that passion tends to fade away after a while. The truth is, typically the only thing that changes after a few years is the amount of effort being put into the relationship.
In the first few years, we put our new relationship at the top of our priority list. We nurture it. We make time for it.
Once that feels secured, we pay less attention. We drift.
But you can maintain that passion and intensity simply by deciding to do it.
5. You've stopped growing.
People often say that they can't imagine being married to the same person for the rest of their lives, but if you and your partner are constantly growing and learning, you are different people all the time. So you aren't married to the same person for 30 years.
However, if you're committed to stagnation and no evolution in your life, then you'll definitely be married to the same person.
You can recreate the thrill of the new all the time. As you both grow and unfold, learning new things about yourselves, you're getting to know your partner on new levels too. This keeps you endlessly fascinated with the ever-evolving person in front of you.
How do you know when it's time to end the relationship?
Some clear signs you're falling out of love include being less interested in spending time with them in general, getting easily annoyed by them, and no longer having meaningful relationships. That said, if you and your partner are both willing to put the effort in, it's possible to stop falling out of love with someone and get the relationship back on track.
The bottom line is that you get to design your relationship. It's entirely possible to be with someone for decades and still have smoldering passion. How do you want your relationship to look? What are you willing to do to get it there?
Kim Anami is a holistic sex and relationships coach based in Los Angeles and Bali. Her work has been featured at CNN, NPR, Glamour, Elle, Cosmopolitan, Playboy, Marie Claire, The Huffington Post, and many other places. Over the last two decades she's taught thousands of clients about sexuality, orgasms, and sex techniques, incorporating Tantra, Taoism, Osho, Transpersonal psychology, and other modalities.