Passion can burn bright when you first start dating. But after some time attention often wanders, and attraction wanes.
What happens then?
The good news is that there’s no need to throw in the towel, not at all. In fact there are some tried and true ways to keep your guy in it for the long-term and make sure that he’s not headed for the exit before your love story’s even begun.
1) Make your relationship with yourself the best it can be
As the shaman Rudá Iandé teaches in the amazing Out of the Box workshop, integrating ourselves and loving ourselves is the first step to finding real love and purpose in life.
The course made an incredible difference for me in all areas of my life and understanding myself and I’m confident it can do the same for you.
We have to go deep and look at our ancestors, early experiences and inner perceptions in order to truly embrace self-love and own who we really are at the primal, existential level.
If you’re having trouble loving yourself it’s very hard for someone else to love you and if they do it’s often part of a toxic, codependent cycle.
Before this guy can be in it for the long-term with you, you need to be in it for the long-term with yourself. Did that sound corny? I know it can be a bit much, but honestly it’s true and it’s more than just words.
Traumatic experiences when we’re younger and as we grow and live and love can sever our connection to our true selves. They can make us run from our body and breathe shallowly and think in a needy, scared way as we try to cling for comfort and validation.
Loving yourself is about way more than positive affirmations or thinking positively. It’s about getting back in touch with our living, breathing essence and truly appreciating the miracle that we are.
Your man will respond with very strong emotions and love as he sees that you value yourself and accept yourself fully. There’s no need to be perfect or have no issues – it’s not about that at all – it’s only to be filled with deep honesty even in your struggles and a deep commitment to love and care for yourself through the ups and downs of life.
Sometimes you expect more from yourself and life pushes you to the limit. And that’s OK: accept the feelings of disappointment and pain.
But never believe the story that you’re not good enough or worthy for love from yourself.
You are worthy. Know and feel that on a deep level. Your guy will feel it too.
2) Trigger his hero instinct
As author James Bauer explains in his bestselling dating book His Secret Obsession, the hero instinct is a key piece of the love puzzle.
Many women haven’t heard of it or don’t yet know the crucial lesson it teaches about how men get attracted – and committed – in a romantic relationship.
The simple explanation of the hero instinct is that it’s the deep biological drive men have to be a hero and protector of their woman. What is this the Stone Age? I can hear you asking the question right now.
Maybe you’re also sighing in exasperation or dropped a few swear words.
“It’s 2020, I think we can agree gender equality is just basic damn common sense by now.”
Well, the thing is that having equal rights and respect is obviously a must. But saying men and women are “the same” is actually disrespectful to both. Of course men and women are different in various fundamental biological and psychological ways.
And that’s a good thing.
It’s not that you need to flatter your guy every time he carries the groceries inside or helps tinker with the car and get it in good shape. It’s just that you can show him you need and appreciate him in simple ways that will set off all the deeply embedded romance and commitment buzzers inside him.
He’ll be full of a warm glow and want to help you and stand beside you.
If you just make him feel like a co-equal partner whose help doesn’t mean that much to you there’s a good chance his hero instinct won’t be triggered and he’ll start to wander further afield in search of a woman who can make him feel that protective, strong instinct inside toward her.
A guy who’s “your hero” will go out of his way to help you no matter how hard the situation gets, but if he feels like he’s just in the background or not necessarily he’ll feel a deep void inside that no amount of sex or vacations together will help fix.
This free video explains what the hero instinct is and how you can trigger it in your man. It really works and I genuinely think you’ll be amazed at what you get out of watching it and absorbing the information.
3) Break that tired old routine
Having a dependable schedule and daily routine can be comforting, but it can also get old.
After enough time of cuddling up and watching “your show” after dinner and having date night on Friday you might just be reaching a point where things are getting a little bit stale.
The initial stages of your romance are over, but now things are settling into a worn groove and your guy is likely starting to feel like he could wake up in a week or two and have grey hair and a stress ulcer from work and hit the replay button on every conversation he’s had with you.
He’s trying to feel that old buzz in his heart but all he’s feeling is exhausted and bored.
It’s time to break that tired old routine: get out hiking in nature, go to an amazing concert, do some cooking classes together, go skydiving if that’s your thing. Whatever you do, shake things up a little.
If you’re past the stage of your first dates and things are getting more serious but they’re in danger of approaching Boringville then it’s time to brainstorm and come up with an exciting adventure.
Maybe you decide to go camping for the weekend and take a canoe trip out on the lake.
It’s romantic and a good workout. Why not try it out?
4) Be a bit badass
No guy wants to be in it long-term with a girl who treats him badly, that’s for sure. But he also won’t feel that hero instinct activate and his deeper love emerge for a girl who doesn’t no what she wants or acts needy and clingy.
You want to embrace your badass side a bit.
Now, this is a bit of a balancing act. You don’t want to be overly aggressive or indifferent like an action hero chick. You want to show him you need him and let your guy be the hero.
But you also want to be yourself and stick to your guns. Show him that you have certain expectations and comfort zones that are part of your rulebook and it’s up to him to get with the program.
A man will respond very positively and increased long-term commitment to a woman who holds him to a high standard and let’s him become his best self in relation to her and his relationship with her.
Don’t call him out publicly or go on a two-hour rant about unwashed dishes. But do be a little bit badass and show him you can hold him up to your ideals even if it means you aren’t always completely “nice.”
Sure, guys like to be treated well but they also like to earn respect and love, not just have it plopped down in their lap.
You don’t need to design a relationship obstacle course in order to just up your standards a bit and put your foot down when he screws up in a pleasant – but firm – way.
Showing your guy that you’re a woman who demands respect and has high standards will have him working to improve himself and thinking about committing to you long-term.
5) Mealtime is couple time
One mistake that a lot of couples make that’s actually very easy to make is they stop cooking and eating together.
Mealtimes become frantic TV dinners or takeout that you scarf down while waiting in traffic. Time together becomes half-dazed napping on the couch or a quick call before bed where one partner is trying their best to end the call so they can sleep without seeming rude.
Come on, guys.
If you want a guy to be in it for the long haul you’ve got to find the way to his heart (I hear it on good authority that it’s through his stomach, and a lot of empirical evidence bears this out, too).
So, cook together, cook for him, let him cook for you. Whatever: just do your best to eat together at least a couple of times a week and make it a nice occasion.
Light up a candle or two, maybe even put on a bit of light music. Create a chill atmosphere where love can flourish instead of a rushed task that you just want to get over and done with.
Consider taking some cooking classes together too. Nothing creates stronger bonding that mixing up a tray of cookies with a chocolate Hershey’s kiss on top and a kiss for your guy as well.
There’s no need to aim for perfection, either. Take some culinary trips to wine country or little cafes and restaurants you like. Sample new dishes and then try them out at home.
Make your mealtimes couple time. It will create a lifetime of special memories and you’ll get to savor incredible food, too.
6) Tickle his funny bone
Laughter can be a love activator. Think of the day-to-day grind like a dim room. Maybe grey. Low lighting. Maybe some abandoned construction material and garbage in the corner.
Suddenly someone turns on a light and you find yourself on the set of a musical with wild costumes and beautiful scenery.
That transformation is like what laughter and laughing together can do to a relationship.
Your attraction level can be off the charts. You can agree about every issue and share life goals. He can say he’s all in with you.
But if you’re not laughing together you’re missing out bigtime.
There’s nothing to worry about if it’s not happening randomly or out of the blue, though. Sometimes when attraction is high building up a humor connection can take time. It isn’t always instantaneous.
Even some very deep relationships that have long-term commitment take time to develop your rapport and shared sense of humor.
The more you do together and the more you share the ups and downs of life, the more you will laugh – and maybe cry – together.
If you’re lucky you’ll laugh so much together you’ll cry.
That’s the good stuff.
7) Be mature
Throughout your whole perception and approach to helping a guy stay invested long term, it’s very, very important to avoid “games.”
Here’s what I mean by games: anything other than actual games like board games or playing video games together or actual games.
This means avoiding mind games, jealousy games, not-answering-calls-and-texts games, and so on. You get the picture.
Don’t pay any attention to websites and gurus who tell you to act like a middle school drama queen. Any guy who is worth his salt will be heading for the hills when he senses that you are playing with his emotions or “trying” to get him to feel or react a certain way.
It just doesn’t work. And even if it temporarily causes a result you like the long-term will be a messy and awful breakup.
Believe me. I’ve been there.
The advice in this article is for really understanding and putting into action the positive steps that will deepen your connection with your guy. It’s not about games.
The difference is that there’s nothing wrong with understanding and modifying your approach to your relationship; but there is something wrong with abstractedly and cunningly trying “tactics” that will trick him or get him to react like a Pavlovian dog.
That ain’t love, sister.
It’s fine to tell yourself to be a bit more distant or stop being so emotionally vulnerable with him all the time (see badass tip) but that’s a lot different than intentionally pretending to be upset to get him to feel guilty, or letting him see that you’re flirting with another guy so you’ll spur his jealousy.
Keep things mature and love will grow, play games and you’ll be left feeling low.
You get the idea …
8) Let him help you
This is related to the hero instinct and everything it entails, but more on the slow, steady side and emotional side.
It’s great if you let him check up on your car or look after you when you’re sick. That hero instinct will be buzzing like a bee, guaranteed.
But you should also be developing that part of yourself that – while still strong and capable – appreciates and responds lovingly to his interest in your life and problems.
It’s not that your guy needs to fix everything that ever goes wrong at work or in your life, but he wants to feel essential and he needs that in order to have that part of him click that wants to be with you forever.
A guy can find you smoking hot, funny and even likeable and have some feelings for you, but that deeper part of him that wants to stick by you through thick and thin needs to be triggered by a connection built on trust and protection.
There’s no need to “play” the damsel in distress here. Just be open to his input and help in your life.
Even if he doesn’t solve your issues or set everything right, his presence and support is going to mean a lot to you and to him.
9) Live in the moment
When you’re starting to get serious with someone you come to a fork in the road.
Think of it as make or break crossroads.
Let’s assume you’re in it for the long run. You’re in love, you want a life together. But this guy is a wild horse. You don’t know which way he’s headed. He might be just about ready to turn left back to Casual Dating Crescent.
This is the time you may be tempted to grab his arm and “guide” him down the road to the serious relationship zone.
You can almost see the white picket fence and the happy family. Right?
Don’t do it! A little more subtlety is needed here.
Spontaneity. The irony is that in not pressuring or forcing your love with your man you will allow it to grow. Try having a slow dance at the fork in the road.
Or let him whip out a blanket and enjoy a delicious picnic. After a bottle of wine you should be loosened up and ready to let your love play out naturally.
The path to serious runs through spontaneity.
Truly enjoying each other’s company and soaking up the love and laughter. If you get stuck in a pattern, expectations, guilt and codependency then even if you do end up on a road to serious it’s eventually going to fall apart and become bitter.
Embrace spontaneity and genuine connection and let the commitment unfold naturally.
10) Stand up for yourself and help guide the relationship
Didn’t I just advise to try not to pressure and steer the relationship? Yes, I did. And that advice still stands.
This advice is different: it means to be a participating partner who helps guide the relationship.
Your guy doesn’t want to be told where to turn or when to get serious, but he’s also not going to respond well if you just ditch him at the crossroads and go frolicking on your own through a meadow.
If you want to be with him you have to be with him.
Talk over your relationship, be honest how you feel, help guide things forward from your side without pressure or obligation.
He will appreciate your honesty and sincerity and respond with feelings of attraction and interest when he sees that you have a vision of the future that you’re open to that includes him.
Make sure your vision isn’t dependent on him, but also show that it can include him if he also wants it.
Freedom with vision: the recipe for love.
11) Widen your friend circle
Part of getting serious and helping your guy take the long view of your relationship is widening your friend circle.
This means branching out to his friends. They don’t have to become your new best pals, but showing that you can trade some banter and appreciate their company sends a powerful signal to your guy that you’re the girl for him.
After all, no matter how different you and your guy are, showing appreciation and interest in each others’ social lives is important and means a lot.
Just make sure it’s genuine.
When the topic gets to cars or the latest action flick you don’t need to fake interest if you’re not into it. Just crack a joke about something and have a fun time. You’re not there to prove anything when you’re out with your guy and his friends.
You’re there to show you value time with him and you value the guys he counts as friends.
There’s no need to pretend to like his obnoxious friend Dave when he’s rude to you, or to pretend to play pool because the guys like to do that on the weeked.
Be yourself, but make an effort to appreciate and spend time with his friends now and then.
Just don’t flirt with them, like I said, games don’t work.
12) Show him your sexy side
Your guy is already attracted to you if he’s dating you, but you want to amp up the voltage a bit.
Show him your ultra-sexy side. The kind that makes guys groan with desire and their mouths hang open. You know what I’m talking about.
You want your sex life to be like a steaming sauna. Cute nicknames, favorite positions, you name it. Do it and let yourself go.
Develop a shared language of love between you and let your bodies do some talking.
Try scattering a trail of rose petals to the bed the next time you invite him over. If you’re into sexting then go for it …
You don’t want him to see you as just another booty call, but if your sexual connection becomes much more intense than just casual you’ll know and feel it throughout your whole body – and so will he.
13) Understand the psychology behind men and commitment
Does it feel like whatever you do, nothing will get through to your man?
If so, it signifies that whatever is holding your man back from fully committing to you is rooted deeply in his psyche.
Psychologists have studied the way men think for years, but only one truly hit the nail on the head – Sigmund Freud, the father of psychology.
To save you having to take a degree in psychology just to get through to your man, we’ve put together something much easier to help you in your relationship:
Our free commitment quiz, based on Freud’s most highly regarded theories.
You see, his issues with commitment have nothing to do with you. You could be the perfect woman for him but he still won’t see it.
So rather than let him slip away, be the one who finally understands what’s holding him back and learn how to unleash his commitment.
14) Gratitude attitude
Yes, yes, I know. It’s another cliche, right? But seriously: if you start focusing your mind on what you’re grateful for in your relationship good things happen.
Think of this as miracle spring water without any televangelist stealing your money in return for pouring some tap water on yourself.
Because the thing is: even if you don’t experience a “miracle” the process of gratitude is its own reward.
The next time your man cooks you a delicious meal or remembers to ask how your meeting went at work, give him a kiss and show that you’re truly thankful.
No matter how hard things are in the day-to-day, try to think at least once about something in your romantic life that is going well.
Maybe it’s just the way he looks at you.
But that can mean a helluva lot, right? So focus on it.
That energy of gratitude will spread like a radiating halo of love and the positive vibes will permeate into him as well.
Watch out or he might tell you something he loves about you, too, or even that he loves you. The circle of gratitude expands …
15) Embrace your inner Wonder Woman
You don’t need to be a superhero to embrace your inner Wonder Woman. You just need to get in touch with your core feminine essence.
Rediscover that part of yourself that’s confident, full of joy and in touch with inner and outer beauty.
Achieve a state where you walk in a room and you can feel your man’s eyes light up as he looks at you. Feel your energy cascade off you like a waterfall.
Then ask your man to join you in that waterfall.
Men tend to find a romantic commitment together with a sexual connection, and if your time in bed together is irresistible and spontaneous he will be drawn steadily closer to the point where he can’t even imagine being with another woman.
Because you satisfy all his desires and more.
Be confident about what you like in bed and guide your man. It’s good to be a generous lover and please him, but also let him feel the mutual connection you share and the special spark that only you and he can experience together.
When you wear that sexy lingerie he bought you he’s not just ogling your curves, he’s entranced by your energy and gaze and body as a whole.
Become wrapped up in your lovemaking and let your attraction reach heights you never even dreamed about before him.
He’ll keep coming back for more.
Keeping him invested …
Now that you’ve read this far you’ve likely picked up on the core messages in this article. Love yourself first, stand up for yourself but let him care for you, be part of his life and let him be part of yours.
It’s fairly simple, really, but it’s not necessarily easy.
Get in touch with your inner intuition and learn to trust yourself and how you feel with your man. Never be afraid to communicate or show who you really are: the relationship is only worth it if you feel like you can communicate on a deep level with your partner.
A relationship is not a zero-sum game, and all love connections are different, but with trust and a healthy, growing attraction you can set out together on the path to something serious and long-lasting.
Can a relationship coach help you too?
If you want specific advice on your situation, it can be very helpful to speak to a relationship coach.
I know this from personal experience…
A few months ago, I reached out to Relationship Hero when I was going through a tough patch in my relationship. After being lost in my thoughts for so long, they gave me a unique insight into the dynamics of my relationship and how to get it back on track.
If you haven’t heard of Relationship Hero before, it’s a site where highly trained relationship coaches help people through complicated and difficult love situations.
In just a few minutes you can connect with a certified relationship coach and get tailor-made advice for your situation.
I was blown away by how kind, empathetic, and genuinely helpful my coach was.