The keys to sustaining desire in a relationship
“Your greatest power in seduction is your ability to turn away, to make others come after you, delaying their satisfaction.” ― Robert Greene, The Art of Seduction
Desire, as Esther Perel emphasized in her famous TED talk, can never grow without space. This is why learning how to make your partner miss you is as vital as any other aspect of your relationship.
Left to your hormones, emotions, or instincts, you want to spend every single minute of the day with the person you love. But based on experience, you probably would have found out that’s a bad idea. Though you acted out of good intention, being too available and predictable just doesn’t increase desire.
Sustaining attraction in a relationship isn’t about the amount of time you spend together, it’s about the quality of the time you spend together. A couple who spend most of their day apart will have more space to miss and imagine how great it will be together again. Plus, they’ll have more to say when they are together. That said, here are practical tips from psychology to make someone miss you.
The Worst Thing You’ll Most Likely Do
Imagine the following:
You’re in a relationship with a woman and things appear to be going well. But gradually, you notice she doesn’t call or make plans as often as she used to. It’s natural to get worried and bring it up.
But after you bring it up she simply says she’s been having a busy time or even denies that she’s been distant. But instead of backing off on the conversation and focusing on things you can do about it, you press harder, asking her if he still finds you attractive. You get anxious and you begin to observe her more closely, looking for signs that something is wrong.
One of the things people do when they want their partner to miss them is that they complain about their partner not missing them. This however will most likely do more harm than good. It often comes off as naggy or needy. As psychologist Dr. Antonio Borello explained,
“Complaining about your partner not missing you has the opposite effect, things get more difficult between you two. If you continue to bring it up, you might sabotage your chances of turning things around.”
If the problem in the relationship is your partner not missing you as he or she used to, then there are better ways to go about it. Nagging or complaining is more likely to push them further away.
Be Someone Worth Missing
We only miss people who have a special place in our hearts. Whether that person is a romantic partner or not, if you share special, happy moments with someone, you’ll surely miss them when you’re apart.
Your partner cannot miss you if you don’t have anything special with him or her yet.
In psychology, there’s a phenomenon called the dopamine-seeking reward loop. And it explains that when we have great experiences, the type that triggers a rush of dopamine us, we attach that great feeling to the person we were with at that time.
Meaning, when you think of that person, you also get a rush of dopamine associated with the experiences you’ve had with them. This is one of the best ways to get someone to miss you.
Doing fun and adventurous things together won’t only trigger a dopamine rush, it will also help your bond stronger on an emotional level. When you’re not together, your partner will think of the good times and will not be able to wait to meet you again the next time.
One of the major things that can quickly make your partner want less of you is overcommunicating.
Indeed, when you love someone, you want to stay in touch with them as much as possible. Staying in touch through texting or phone calls when you’re not together is a good way to compensate for being apart.
However, some people get carried away and over-communicate. Over communicating is when you’re always the one initiating the contact.
Communication should be balanced. If you’re always the one texting first morning, afternoon, night, then you might come off as needy to some people. Someone who cares about you will deliberately want to also initiate things with you because he or she doesn’t want you to feel they don’t care.
The key to making someone miss you is simply making them want more of you. If you over-communicate, you reduce the chances of this ever happening.
As Robert Greene wrote in The Art of Seduction, “There is too little mystery in the world; too many people say exactly what they feel or want.”
One reason we find celebrities so amusing is because of how we’ll play the part of being this mysterious, elusive personality that no one can get a grasp of.
Whenever there’s a major event, like an award night, they dress up in unexpected and unconventional outfits. Sometimes they have the good girl look, other times it’s “the bad boy/bad girl all in black who doesn’t give a sh*t” look.
Sometimes they’ll look like angels, other times they look extremely seductive.
Whether these celebrities do it deliberately or not, the mystery these outfits create in people only adds to their allure. Not knowing what to expect from them, we are always eager to see what’s in store. The diverse fashion also makes them hard to figure out, all of which makes them more exciting to the public eye.
Learn to create a little mystery. This, of course, doesn’t mean you lie about the things you do. That’s deception.
For instance, if you’re going with your parents for dinner and you want to let a guy you just met know about it, you don’t need to let him know it’s with your parents unless he asks.
Unfold a bit more of yourself as you get more intimate with someone. Too much, too soon rarely does any good anyway.
When a guy or girl you’re attracted to is having fun with their lives, without you, it makes you want to be a part of it. This is partly because we all want to be a part of something positive. We want to be with people who are living fully and who love their lives.
If you’re active on social media, share fun moments with friends. Share photos of the dinner you had with your family on Sunday evening.
Showing that you have your life together without someone shows your level of self-reliance. You send the message that you’re not needy, and you’re not in a relationship with them out of desperation.
When it appears that the person we are in a relationship with doesn’t miss us, a lot of things run through our minds. “Is he losing affection for me?” “Has she found someone else?”
But a decrease in attention doesn’t necessarily mean the relationship has fallen apart. Sustaining the desire and the fire in a relationship always have to be worked on actively. It’s that important. It cannot be left to chance or emotions alone. No wonder Jordan Peterson wrote in Rule 10 of Beyond Order:
“Plan and work diligently to maintain the romance in your relationship.”