Whether your relationship started with passion and fireworks, or it warmed slowly from a friendship, you both initially felt a strong connection. Over time, though, you may have run out of things to say. And now you may be wondering whether it’s time to acknowledge that the relationship is over. Before you give up on it, you may want to try to revive it.
When you find yourself hearing, “Blah, blah, blah” as your partner talks, it may be a sign that you and your partner are on autopilot. At that point, choose to get curious. By engaging in curious behaviors – such as asking questions and wondering about a situation – you may awaken your feelings of curiosity about your partner. That is, you may feel motivated to get to know them better. And this can lead you out of the current apathetic relationship and back into an actively caring one.
One way to engage your curiosity is by exploring a tired, old topic in a new way. Ask about an aspect of your partner’s experience that they are not talking about. For instance, if they discuss the details of an incident, you might ask about their understanding of it and what they think others in the situation thought. You can also ask about how the situation is affecting them and how they would want things to work out. As you explore these areas, try to see the world through your partner’s eyes. If you feel you are missing something or don’t really get it, simply ask more questions. This can increase your empathy and interest in your partner.
Another way to engage your curiosity is to search out new experiences, encourage your partner to do this, or to do it together. If one or both of you pursue separate personal interests, those experiences can help to infuse your relationship with new energy. Similarly, if you explore new experiences together, you may find that you have more to talk about – more to learn about each other, as well as the particular activity.
Although it’s not the only important factor in successful relationships, curiosity about each other’s experiences is essential to remaining emotionally connected and close. When you realize there is more to learn about your partner, your curiosity may lure you in to wanting to know more about, and share more with, this person you love.