I'm reminded of a blog I read awhile back; actually had to go dig it up this evening. Since I often write about dating & the relationships that accompany it? I've always kept up with other blogs that write about relationships, sex, and dating. This particular blog is written by Patty Brisben, the Founder/CEO of Pure Romance. In it, she talks about 10 ways you can experience romance in a relationship. When I first read it, I wondered how many people did these things (or things like them) on a regular, reoccuring basis. I compared the list to my prior relationships and thought about whether or not I had done these things... or had they... ?
The results weren't really stellar. I had a habit of picking out the "grand gesture" guy and then when that rubber band would snap; settling back into a relationship with a guy that was allergic to romance. (1) Not because I didn't like romantic gestures... who doesn't like little things that show the person that you're with thinks you're special or cares?? (2) No, I think I did it because over time, I developed a fear of what those romantic gestures meant: they only came on the other side of something disasterous. Over time, I learned to equate romance to equal an aspect of an apology. And when that's the only time it happens? It makes it not cool. So, over the years, I think I developed my own 'allergy' to romance. I lent a leary eye to people who wanted to hold my hand, didn't really flirt much, and developed a disdain for watching romantic movies. (3)
The problem, is, though? That's not really fair to the people I date. It's bringing old baggage into new relationships - which, while to an extent is unavoidable? Never a good idea to have steamer-trunk sized baggage you've yet to deal with. You both end up paying for that and it's an expensive baggage bill. Not to mention the fact that there's some serious life benefits to daily (or close to it) dosages of romance... check this out (4):
- Did you know that kissing is healthier than shaking hands? You're less likely to get a cold from the guy/gal you're with if you kiss them hello or goodbye than by shaking their hand. Yeah, I know, sounds wrong but it's true.
- Kissing your partner goodbye each morning might increase your income. The Pollsters contend that their studies show that the man who kisses his wife goodbye before he leaves for work each morning averages a higher income than the guy that doesn't. This is attributed more to the character behind the man than the act of the ritual - more painstaking, more methodical, more stable ; but still, might be worth making a habit of! ;)
- Your guy will live longer just by smooching you each morning. Another reason for men to kiss their women-folk before they leave each morning is that there is documented evidence that they'll live 5 years longer than those that don't, on average.
- It's good for the economy. All that kissing helps contribute to the wearing off of women's lipstick... which is partly responsible for this quasi-gross stat: A woman will use up approximately her height in lipstick every five years. While this makes me shudder a bit; it's keeping Estee Lauder in business... so, kiss me already!!
- It's not a bad way to burn some carbs. A fairly passionate kiss will burn approximately 9 calories. When you consider the average kiss is less than 60 seconds; if you make out for 20 minutes? You've burned off that coke you snuck in during the afternoon-duldrums.
- It could lead to sex... which supports patriotism... kinda. Well, maybe that wasn't worded well, but America is ahead the global average of annual sexual experiences. Greece wins out at 138 times a year; we come in at 113, Canadians are sporting 108 sexual experiences on a PPA each year... global is 103. So, when you get romantic, it could lead to sex, which helps boost our ratings... maybe? Stretch?? :p Either way, next time you hear "Honey, I'm not in the mood tonight" I vote you try, "But Baby, do it for America!!" ha.haha.hahaha
- Phone Romance could lead to a Proposal. Approximately 6% of men who propose each year do so over the phone. Now, what percentage of that 6% got a "yes?" Might be an entirely different statistic.
- Hand-Holding Reduces Stress. While it may increase your chances of getting a cold, it helps your brain to keep from working overtime to handle stress. University of Virgina put out a study that shows when you're holding the hands of your significant other, it literally soothes the brain, creating a calming effect; making it easier to deal with tough situations and decreasing overall stress levels.
- The Jones' Do It. The number one "romantic activity" rated by couples is one area that you probably won't mind keeping up with the Jones' on... and surprisingly, it's not sex (that's the 8th highest rated). It's actually snuggling on the couch watching TV/a movie. I don't mind going on record saying that's a regular occurance with my boyfriend and it's pretty relaxing (5).
- It's Cheaper than Cocaine; and healthier, too! It's commonly believed that cocaine addicts are addicted due to the dopamine release that comes after a hit (6). It makes you feel elated, estatic, and even turned on. Guess what? So does looking at your partner - especially in the early days of a relationship... and it won't fry your body/brain or kill you. Well, unless you're doing it while crossing a street and therefore not looking both ways first. :p Other health benefits are as a result of more frequent sex; which comes on the other side of upping the romance factor in your relationship... but they are a better sense of smell, lower rate of heart disease, lower body rate, increased physical fitness, and higher levels of pyschological self-satisfaction.
(1) This new introspective kick that I'm on? Bites. Sometimes self-awareness is not fun.
(2) And I think I'm fairly good at doing those things, even if I'm leary of receiving them. Yes, I get that's a double-standard. Again, introspection is a work-in-progress so back off. :p
(3) Still do, unless it's more comedy than romance and dear God, please don't make me watch a sex scene in a movie theatre full of strangers. Awkward! I'm also oddly proud that I've managed to never be sucked into seeing "Dear John" by my gal pals or daughter.
(4) Facts obtained from Romancepedia. Also some news article and Romance Unlimited.
(5) One of my fav. activities; though I'm not sure how much it counts for a 'romantic activity' when we're both asleep 15 minutes in. :p
(6) I "just say 'no' to drugs" so I have zero first-hand knowledge of this.