No offense to Gary Chapman or the important book he penned, but he might have dropped the ball by stopping at five love languages.
In our adult world filled with deadlines, stress and responsibility, it's so important to find the time to play, and when you can bring this into relationship, you become irresistible.
In the world of dating, it can be so easy to get wrapped up in this idea of finding the “one”—making sure your partner is checking all the boxes, that your values align, that you're compatible —that you forget that having fun together is just as important. If you’re all business, all the time, you might be great at running a Fortune 500 Company, but you run the risk of being a dud outside of work.
We are all attracted to people who are fun. Everyone wants to laugh and have a good time — it's what makes life enjoyable! But actually acting on this and bringing lighthearted and playful into your life and relationship can be elusive.
You might want to start looking at the places where you are robbing yourself of fun and playfulness. Where do you have too much stress in your life? Where are you not making time to connect and find those places, that territory, where you can actually enjoy life like a kid again?
Are you constantly thinking about work? Are you constantly checking things off some ambitious list that will never be complete? Are you bogged down with “what ifs”? Is there a place where you can make space in your life to connect with who you are and enjoy the ride?
Because if you're not able to do this on your own, it’s that much harder to do it with another person.
What’s great about the above is that having fun doesn’t need to be complicated. You don’t need to plan an exotic trip or find an all-night rave to experience the thrill of existence. Instead, try the following:
Get Curious: Bring curiosity into your life in a way that frees you from making assumptions about the world around you and, instead, look through the world with the eyes of a child. Embrace wonder. One way to do this might be to go out into nature and climb on some rocks. Get into your body. Or choose a common object in your environment and pretend you're an alien and invent a different use for it. Make up a story and stretch your imagination to get out of the rut of adult thinking. Utilize your right brain.
Be Present: Children are always present because they can have fun anywhere. A library? A bus station? An insurance convention? It doesn’t matter – they’re omni-present. Strive to be omni-present, too. Move through the world as though everything is there to entertain you. Look for the fun.
Improvise: Improvisation becomes necessary as you start to date somebody. You find yourself getting to know them and you begin to question how to keep things fun and how to bring a flirtatious vibe into the relationship. To explore this, let’s look at a concept called “Deaf Monkey Dating.” What this basically means is this: Could you go on a date with a deaf monkey and still have a great time?
A few things you can employ in order to assure that you can answer yes to the above question are innuendo and tension. Innuendo spices things up and adds a playfulness. Tension, while we often think of it as a bad thing, is also playful. And filled with invite and intrigue.
What all the above comes down to is that relationships shouldn’t feel like work. If they do, they won’t work (see? Puns are playful!). The best relationships are those where you allow one another to come alive.
And this applies with everyone, from relationships that are just beginning to those that have gone on for decades.
Luckily, play is very versatile—you can create it anywhere. From a sexy joke to wrestling, from tickling to pranks, from a jokey text to making faces, there are so many things you can do to cultivate the fresh and fun.
Even if you’re expressing a need—like a need for attention, for instance—insulating it with humor will present it to your partner in a disarming way. And that’s how you know you’re flirting right. It’s light and playful but still very potent.
Remember, as cliché as it is, the couples who play together are the ones who stay together.
If you’d like more information on this topic, check out the guide on Seven Secrets to Master Modern Dating in this link.
Clayton has been empowering individuals and couples from around the world to find harmony and authenticity in their relationships. With a background in Professional Coaching and Neuro Linguistic Programming, Clayton takes a holistic approach to carefully reconstructing what is truly possible for his clients. Through his work he has revitalized relationships, brought together lost loves, and witnessed clients find their soul mates. Clayton's content has been seen on Fox news magazine, Huffington post, the Goodmen project and he's even had an article featured on The View.