Life can get really busy and, before we know it, we’ve let our relationship fall into a rut. Your partner is meant to be your companion through life which means that it’s incredibly important to nurture your bond. One of the best times of year to reignite your passion is over the summer months. Here are some suggestions for recapturing that flame.

Get Outside

Summer is a fantastic time to feel carefree and there’s something about getting outside that can feel incredibly energizing and youthful. Whether you enjoy hiking, biking, relaxing at the beach or just a stroll around the block, make some time to enjoy the fresh air together.

Bring Sexy Back

Remember how flirtatious you were when you first met your significant other? Remember how much you agonized over finding an outfit that would make a good impression? Try going back to putting in that sort of effort and see how good and fresh things feel (hopefully, they will reciprocate!). Send your partner some suggestive texts or emails and you might be counting the minutes until you get some alone time.

Plan Dates

One of the things that most of us enjoyed before our life with kids was spontaneity. You could decide to go out for pizza and a movie on a whim and not have to think twice. Now, going out on a date may take a bit more planning but that quality time is important and worth it. Take turns choosing an activity and restaurant and then commit to giving each other that attention. When the kids (eventually) leave home and you are left in your empty nest together, you will be glad you put in the effort.

Actively Listen

When your partner is speaking to you, give them your undivided attention. Of course, this isn’t always practical but if they are sharing something about their day or some concern they are having, don’t fidget, don’t turn away and definitely don’t check some device. Look them in the eyes, use non-verbal cues (such as nodding) to let them know you are paying attention and be the soundboard they need in that moment. You would want them to do the same for you.

Turn Off Technology

Commit to spending some time together (even if it’s just 10 minutes) every day without the intrusion of technology. Put the phones, laptops and tablets away, turn off the television and actually be present with each other. You might be amazed to see how many of these moments lead to incredible conversations, closeness and bonding.

Every relationship has its ups and downs but that doesn’t mean that we should be passive about our happiness. If you want to increase the satisfaction in your relationship, put in the effort. A little loving and tenderness can go a long way!