The Sum of Small Things

by Jacqueline Hellyer - 09 May 2011 - No comments yet
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Article originally posted on The Love Life Blog

I’m sitting in bed writing this, having just had breakfast in bed brought to me by my wonderful partner. It was just a cup of tea and toast, nothing flash, but what a difference it’s making to my day! It’s a small thing, but it’s a significant thing.

It’s the sum of these small things that set the quality of your relationship. Equally, it’s the sum of small neglects that stultify a relationship, flat-lining it. When a relationship flat-lines, there’s generally not a lot of sexual desire.

I’ve talked before about the concept of be-foreplay, all the things you do before you even get to the bedroom that put you in the mood for a bit of lovin’. It’s the beforeplay that gets you in the mood for foreplay and from there, sex (which I define as all things genital, not just intercourse).

This is particularly the case for women. The feminine sexual energy is like water, it takes a while to heat up. A woman who has a high sexual desire is one who is keeping her waters simmering, so to speak. That is in large part a reflection on how the two of you are relating, the beforeplay, all the small things you do to each other to feel good about each other, to appreciate each other, to enjoy each others company and from that to want to enjoy each others bodies in delicious sexual play. By which point her sexual water energy has come to a boil and then will boil and boil and boil and boil and…

A couple I’ve been working with for a while announced at a recent workshop that the thing that had made the biggest difference to their sexual relationship is that every day once the kids are in bed they spend ten minutes or so just chatting over a cup of tea or glass of wine. That’s all. Yet that small amount of time every day is enough to connect them and easily lead them on to love-making, when the mood takes them.

Another couple this week told me how focusing on small things, like taking the garbage out together, adds to their connection (and makes a mundane task more fun).

For me, a cup of tea and toast every morning during the baby and toddler years meant that I started the day slowly and happily, so I felt good about myself and good about my husband, which meant that the likelihood of nooky was much greater. (That relationship of 16 years came to an end when we realised it had done its time, and we’ve moved on amicably to follow our now separate life paths).

I stress the breakfast in bed thing because that’s one example of what works for me. My parents told me many years ago that their secret to a long and happy marriage was that my father has brought my mother breakfast in bed virtually every day of their married life. I’ve inherited my mother’s appallingly bad ability to function in the morning, so my partners have realised that this small token of affection makes for a happy sexed-up Jacqueline!

The question is, what are the small things that mean a lot to you, and which mean a lot to your partner? How can you keep the connection strong through small and frequent acts of kindness and affection? It can be words, it can be touch, it can be actions, it can be gifts and it can simply be spending time together. It’s easy in the early days, before the risk of complacency sets in. Over the longer term you need to take up the challenge of keeping it going.

Just like everything else good in life, such as health and wealth, it’s the small constant positives that lead to on-going success, just as much as the small constant negatives lead to failure. Frittering away money and leading a slothful life will affect the quality of your wealth and health in the same way that neglect of your partner will affect your love life. Constant regular savings and an active life with a nutritious diet will enhance your wealth and health in the same way that regular expressions and tokens of affection will fill up your love bank.

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