Many people dread birthdays, anniversaries and romantic holidays because they are sure they are going to blow it.
A lot of people would just like Valentine’s Day to just go away. It never seems to live up to their hopes and dreams.
As Julie put it about her five-year relationship, Valentine’s Day was always a disappointment. Instead of being a romantic high point, “It always turns out to be a testimony to what’s not right in my life.”
We had one question for her: “Have you ever just told Mark exactly what you would love for Valentine’s Day?” She was floored by this question.
“But if I told him exactly what I wanted, it wouldn’t be a surprise.” I pointed out that she wasn’t getting any surprises as it was, since she could practically guarantee she would be getting disappointed.
Her boyfriend was clearly trying, sending flowers when he was out of town, buying a heart-shaped box of chocolates when he was in town, taking her out to the latest crowded hot spot with all the other Valentine’s couples.
She wanted to let him make the plans, and had never told him that what she would have loved was a candlelit dinner at home.
This was her idea of a perfect Valentine’s evening, but by not telling him this important piece of information, she was forcing him to be a mind reader, and guaranteeing that he would fail at the task of making her happy!
Not a very good strategy, if you ask me. The bottom line is that we have to tell our sweethearts what it is that makes our heart sing. We need to give them a fighting chance of success by giving them the tools to please us.
Romance need is real. It is not easy to get it right, but if you understand what your partner’s romance need is, you have a much greater chance of getting it right.
We suggested that Julie plan the perfect romantic evening and invite Mark to enjoy it with her, rather than hoping, expecting, and being disappointed by his plans that didn’t really nourish her romantic needs. When she told Mark about this, not only was he greatly relieved by not having to guess what she really wanted, he was incredibly moved.
No one had ever prepared the perfect romantic evening for him. He admitted that this was a much better way to spend a romantic night together than scrambling through crowded clubs. This met his romance need also!
Why waste time hoping that someone else will do unto you as you wish to be done unto?
Ask yourself: What can I do that would make me feel really loved? Instead of waiting for your partner to fill the hole in your romantic picture, why not be the perfect romantic partner yourself? Plan, do and be the one you want to be. If you take charge of making it happen instead of hoping that someone else will, you can have it your way.
Whether we’re talking about Valentine’s Day, or any special day, the principle is the same. If you articulate what it is you want, you have at least some chance of getting it. If you say what you want and your partner has no desire to make you happy, then you have just learned something very important about this relationship.
But the real lesson here is to “be the lover you want” rather than waiting for someone else to fill unspoken needs. Discuss your romance need with your partner. You can design romance into every day of your life if you are willing to live life filled with the things that make you happy. When was the last time you did something for someone else that was incredibly romantic? Romance is a need we all share, we just need to learn what specifically works for our partner.
No partner? That is no excuse to not do nice things for yourself.
What is one thing you could do today that would really make you feel happy and loved?
I wonder what the world would be like if everyone had “doing love” as a top priority. Can you imagine a world where people were committed to doing at least one thing every day that made them feel loved? I can. That’s just the kind of romance need we can all honor.
"I love you!"
Those are the three words we most want to hear.
Yet for some people saying those words is daunting. They'd rather skip barefoot through a hornet's nest. The good news is saying "I love you!" is a learnable skill.
Our FREE e-book is a love story in four acts that shows how two shy people found creative ways to express their most tender feelings for each other.
You can borrow these words or use them to inspire you to create your own linguistic art of romance.
Go ahead, be brave. Let Cupid speak in your life.
To get a copy, go to the page bottom and tell us your name and email.