Tag Archives: How to Love

Love as Power Play

Part 3 of 5 How to Win At Love – in Five Easy Stages

STAGE  #3 POWER STRUGGLES ~ your “Perfect One’s” imperfect?

Well gol darn, who replaced your sweetie with this demanding, bossy, opinionated, selfish, hard fighting or painfully aloof creature who looks unnaturally like your beloved?

Not quite “buyers remorse” but akin to it, this next stage is the rude awakening that befalls all lovers as their self-inflicted chemical high wears off a bit and they begin to see one another without the rose-tinted specs.

You need this stage – you really do! The reason you and your sweetie have seemed like paragons to one another is probably because you were on your best behaviour, and the few little slip-ups were written off as exceptions to the my-partner-is-perfect myth you’ve been living with. But you’ll be hard pushed to be on your best behaviour for years. At some level your ego knows this too and pops out from behind the “best-behaviour” mask to seek an answer to the increasingly pressing question:

  • “Will you love me as I really am? Warts and all?”

Now is when compromises stop and you begin to fight for what you really want. She’ll stop cheering at the games she swore she loved attending; he’ll swing by the pub for a few with his mates on Friday evening; she’ll share her day first with her mum and social media “besties” and be on-line when he gets home; his “slight” interest in World of Warcraft will revert to the obsession it was; her adorable wardrobe which looked terrific on her won’t look so good covering the floor of their shared space; his inability to see a filthy floor won’t seem so cute either. And so on. This is the gloves-off stage when you start to hammer out what you each need and want on the home front.

What to do?

Speak up!

This phase lasts as long as it’s needed so the sooner you are willing to talk to one another right as issues present themselves, the more likely you are to move through this stage to the next – which feel less like a body-slam and more like a Reel.


TIP 1 ~ Speak up for what really matters to you. Seemingly little issues – how long to read in bed, tidiness preferences, food, money, hobbies, time with friends and relatives – are what make up your days. Can you talk to one another about what you want, even if you end up disagreeing about some of these?

TIP 2 ~ Unite Against Your Differences You’ll never agree on everything. Instead unite with one another against the impossibility of 100% agreement. “It’s a shame we can’t be with both families this Christmas isn’t it.”  (More about this in a future Blog).

TIP 3 ~ Notice What IS Working. For all you notice your differences, don’t forget to highlight what you love about one another. Remember – that which you focus upon expands.

Love as Romance

Part 2 of 5 How to Win At Love – in Five Easy Stages

STAGE  #2 ROMANTIC LOVE ~ you’ve found “The Perfect One”

Lust (Stage 1 – see yesterday’s post) has its place to get you up and out of your comfy zone and into the daunting domain of dating, but it can take you only so far – right?  A few too many maddening mismatches, beastly blind dates and embarrassing evenings and you’ll either give up dating for a while to lick your wounds, or you’ll fall madly for The One.

Finally you’ll meet someone who is utterly unlike all the others. Everything about this person is perfect. Her smile, his eyes; her moves, his laugh; her wit, his jokes. You’ve found your soul mate; the one whose existence makes the sun brighter and the moon more mysterious. Think Romeo to your Juliet (or visa versa).

As much as this feeling of love brings out your most noble self, it too is simply a function of our evolutionary journey, according to Dr. Helen Fisher.  While lust and attraction get you looking for sex with anyone remotely appropriate, fueled by androgens and estrogens, this second stage of Romantic Attraction washes you in a different chemical bath. Now you become drunk on a heady mix of dopamine, testosterone, norepinephrine  and endorphins. You become obsessed by an intense craving for your beloved and typically enjoy more energy, an upbeat mood, and a sense that you and your beloved can take on the world together.

What to do?

Enjoy it!

This phase only lasts from 2 to 24 months and is the shortest (and most intense) of the five stages of love. The goal of this stage of your love relationship is to build the fire so bright and so hot that it’s warmth will see you through the rougher stages to come.

How to win at ROMANTIC LOVE?

TIP 1 ~ Be romantic. Recognize this stage for what it is and give yourselves fully over to it. Take those adventures overseas together. Be a little bit wild and crazy. Open up to new ways of appreciating being alive. Read aloud, dance, play, skip, swim naked, cook together, visit the zoo, take risks. Listen – you are children in the garden of delight so please – go for it!

TIP 2 ~ Avoid responsibilities. In an ideal world, don’t take on a family or mortgage too soon – they can kill romantic love so fast. Sure, second marriages sort of “come with” the family and mortgage stage, so work hard to carve out some play time for yourselves before signing your beloved onto your mortgage papers or having your sweetie discipline your kids.

TIP 3 ~ Dream a little. Plant some seeds for the future. Set goals, create Bucket Lists. Discuss what excites you about tomorrow. When the chemicals wear off, you’ll be glad of some solid ground upon which to stand, together.