How Feeling Bored In Your Relationship Can Actually Be A Good Thing
While nobody wants to feel long-lasting and painful boredom in their relationship, it is perfectly fine — and even beneficial — to experience the occasional lull. This is a natural part of any long-term relationship, and something that will wax and wane at different stages. You may have periods where you and your partner feel fun and fresh, and other times when you feel a little bit over it. And that's OK.
"Feeling bored in a relationship is normal," Jonathan Bennett, relationship and dating expert at Double Trust Dating, tells Bustle. "No relationship, whether romantic or otherwise, is going to be exciting and stimulating all of the time. Being able to accept and love your partner in the midst of more boring moments shows maturity and strength."
These moments can also teach you something not only about each other, but about the relationship as a whole. So the next time you feel a bit dull or disinterested — or if you're wondering what happened to your initial spark — let it be the moment you try something new, get to know each other better, or address any underlying issues in the relationship. Here are a few benefits of feeling bored with your partner, and what it all might mean, according to experts.
1. It Shows The Strength Of Your Relationship
While comforting and secure relationships can still be exciting, experiencing the occasional dull moment — and deciding to stay together — means your connection is built on more than just "in the moment" fun.
As Bennett says, "If you can both have moments of boredom and still love and accept each other, it proves that your relationship is strong. It doesn’t require constant stimulation."
Sure, you should still make an effort to try new things, plan fun dates, and so on. But if you're both OK with the occasional sleepy night in, then you know you've got something special.
2. It's A Great Time To Ask Questions
It's fine if you experience occasional flashes of boredom in your relationship, or have a day where you aren't necessarily getting along. But if this problem is ongoing, it may be time to ask yourselves a few questions about how things are going.
Are you both happy with the relationship? Is there anything you can do to make it healthier? "All strong relationships require this kind of honest questioning," Bennett says. "Being bored is a good motivator to ask these questions."
3. It Can Inspire You To Be Creative
Once the honeymoon phase simmers down, things might not be as thrilling. But instead of worrying about why you're bored, you can use this lull to inspire the relationship.
"If you’re bored, it doesn’t have to be a bad thing," Bennett says. "It can motivate you to find more creative methods to connect with your partner and spice up the relationship in ways you never thought possible. View boredom as an opportunity to make the relationship better!"
What have you always wanted to do together? Where have you never gone? What don't you know about each other? Now's the time to find out.
4. It's A Signal To Reconnect
Believe it or not, boredom can be a good thing, in that it serves as a little warning sign that the relationship may be going off track.
"Boredom may actually show up as a protector of the relationship because it may be the like the smoke detector going off to alert you that you need to prioritize time together and reconnect," therapist Virginia Williamson, LMFT, tells Bustle. "It's challenging for couples to feel excited and engaged in the long-term if you have slipped into living side by side, if your schedules don't allow for much time for one another, or if you have not broken out of your routine in a while."
Instead of assuming things are going south, take the time to figure out what's wrong. As Williamson says, "Make time to shake things up a bit!" And come back together as a couple.
5. It Means You Need To Work On Yourselves
An ongoing sense of boredom may have nothing to do with your partner or the health of your relationship, but instead how you're feeling about yourself.
As Williamson says, "We assign boredom onto the relationship when it may not even belong there. Boredom could be a sign that one or both partners have become stagnant in another area of their life, and it's easy to believe that our relationships are at the heart of every feeling that we experience."
In reality, it might actually be that you're not into your job, or that you need a vacation, or that you've lost touch with a hobby you used to really enjoy.
"Check in with yourself about whether you are seizing opportunities to do things that you are passionate about outside of the relationship, getting together with friends and family as often as you'd like, and are generally satisfied professionally," Williamson says. "It may be that making changes in other areas of your life that benefit you will cast a positive glow on the relationship as well."
6. It's A Sign Of Safety & Security
If you view boredom in the relationship as a bad thing, it may be time to get a change of perspective.
"It is important to, at times, welcome boredom in your relationship and have gratitude for it instead of seeing it as a deficit," therapist Carrie Krawiec, LMFT, tells Bustle. "With familiarity comes the safety of consistency and dependability." And that can be a really good thing.
7. It Means You're Ready For The Next Stage
If you're both feeling like things have ground to a halt, why not see if it means you're ready for the next stage of your relationship?
"Boredom can be a message you are ready to apply some change or challenge yourselves in a new way," Krawiec says. "It can let you know you have achieved comfort where you are, so you are ready for something slightly more difficult."
Maybe that means moving in together, renting in a new city, adopting a pet, or even getting married — the possibilities are endless.
You shouldn't do these things because you're bored, but because the boredom has made you realize you're ready. As Krawiec says, "Boredom can signify a healthy calmness or a time to push for more." It's up to you and your partner to pay attention to these feelings, talk about them, and figure out what's next in your lives together. And, of course, being OK with occasionally feeling bored.