What Is New Relationship Energy? 7 Ways To Make It Last
It's commonly said that the early stages of a relationship are the best. In many cases, it's true. There really is nothing like new relationship energy. But the age-old question is, how do you make it last?
If you're not too familiar with it, the term "New Relationship Energy" is pretty self-explanatory. As Haylin Belay, sexuality expert and social-emotional skills educator, tells Bustle, it's actually a term that popped up in polyamorous communities to describe the "intoxicating feeling" of connecting with someone new. "In 'vanilla dating,' we generally refer to it as the honeymoon period," she says.
Like the honeymoon period, you typically have new relationship energy in those first few weeks or months of a relationship. "It's what Beyoncé means when she says 'drunk in love,'" relationship expert Dr. Megan Stubbs tells Bustle. "You are high on life and your partner. Everything you discover about them is exciting and you can't wait to discover more."
On a physiological level, new relationship energy comes from a "delicious cocktail of hormones" and brain signals that make us feel swept away by new love. "If you're daydreaming about their kisses and you're missing them after only a few hours apart, congratulations — you're feeling new relationship energy," Belay says.
So if you want to keep that new relationship energy going, here are some things you can do, according to experts.
1. Keep Doing New Things Together
"Because we are talking about the dopamine response to connecting with a new partner, one of the best ways to make 'NRE' last is to continue doing things that create that dopamine response," Kate L Stewart, counselor and dating coach, tells Bustle. Do things that are fun and create excitement for the two of you. It doesn't mean that you have to jump out of an airplane or go white water rafting. "Any new experiences for two people to have together can help," she says.
2. Live With The Four A's
To help extend that energy past the honeymoon stage, you’ll need to make the effort to keep the four A's part of your relationship: appreciate, admire, adore, and accept. According to dating coach Julie Spira, this is especially true during times when work and other responsibilities get in the way of closeness. When life gets rough and you forget about those four A's, Spira suggests taking a trip down memory lane. "Try to remember the feeling you got when you first met, and go back to that place in your head and in your heart," she says. "I believe in re-enacting first dates and celebrating the anniversary of a first date." All of these little types of loving gestures can help new relationship energy last.
3. Constantly Work On Your Communication Skills
"Communication is a habit that never goes out of style or need in a relationship," Dr. Stubbs says. "Unless you are a mentalist and can know what your partner is thinking, you need communication." The honeymoon phase may be a time to gloss over any issues. But adopting proper communication habits early on will put your relationship on a good path.
4. Allow Your Relationship To Unfold Organically
If you want that new relationship energy to last, don't be in a hurry to settle into a routine. "When new couples go from meeting to living together in three months, they short circuit NRE because they go into nesting mode early," Stewart says. But new relationship energy is created by the unknown. When a relationship goes into a comfortable place so soon, she says, most of those early unknown elements go away, resulting in less excitement. So don't be afraid to go slow. If it's mean to last, you don't need to rush into things right away.
5. Keep The Positivity In Your Relationship High
"Keep a positive energy in the relationship even if you've been together for a long time," Nia, Director of Miss Date Doctor and relationship expert, tells Bustle. It's important to spend time together and keep laughing. According to her, quality time and laughter will keep the passion and fire alive long after the honeymoon period ends.
6. Find Ways To Keep Dating Each Other
"To keep the NRE alive, never stop dating your partner," Dr. Stubbs says. This goes beyond going out to dinner every Friday night. Instead, it means continue to explore and make new memories with each other. "Try not to let complacency set in and dim your relationship's shine," she says. "That isn't to say that you have to be going on full throttle the entire time you are dating, but never take your partner for granted." Your relationship will eventually transition into one that's more comfortable, but you'll always have those shared memories to reminisce over.
The feelings you get from new relationship energy is the best. But it does take a little bit of effort to make that last. If you can make it a point to stay positive, communicate, and make working on your relationship a priority, then your new relationship energy can last.