Tired of the same old love advice you always hear? Why relationship clichés actually matter.
There are bits of love advice that we've heard thousands of times—so often that we stop taking them seriously. These sayings may be tired, but there's a reason things become clichéd—because they're often true! Here are seven pieces of boring-but-beneficial relationship advice, and what they might mean for you.
1. The way to a man's heart is through his stomach.
Translation: This advice may remind you of a 1950s housewife stirring a bowl of batter while wearing high heels and pearls. People still say it, though, because everyone loves to eat—and they're saying it to you because it's time to stop getting so much takeout and start learning to cook! Create a meal together, take a cooking class, at the very least you can snuggle on the couch and watch some cooking shows on TV. In all seriousness, though, if someone says this to you, they might mean that you're not putting enough effort into the relationship. Cooking someone a meal is a very simple way to show that you care.
2. Absence makes the heart grow fonder.
Translation: People use this line when they know you and your partner are going to be apart for a long time. Taken literally it means that the yearning you feel for your partner while you're away from each other can be incredibly romantic. If you're more worried about the pain or difficulty, use it as a reminder that there are benefits to being apart. You're forced to create a distinct identity, which in the end, is actually healthy; to stay in touch you have to make the relationship a priority, which helps you figure out if this relationship is really worth it; you'll finally use up all those anytime minutes on your phone. Want more? Start here: How To Make Long-Distance Love Work
3. He's just not that into you.
Translation: This popular bit of advice has a catchy ring to it. Alas, it's often true. If your most sensible friends are telling you this, try to look at your relationship as clearly as you can. Could you be imagining an interest that isn't really there?
4. Opposites attract.
Translation: This gem is a reminder that relationships are about more than shared interests. It's important to share or at least respect each other's basic values, but you don't need to share a love of water-skiing or wine bars to have a good relationship. In fact, differences are often the spice that keeps a relationship exciting and interesting. What Happy Couples Have In Common
5. Play hard to get.
Translation: It's difficult to maintain mystery in the age of Facebook. If your friends are telling you to play hard to get you may need to back off in your pursuit of your love object. It doesn't mean you have to be manipulative or follow "The Rules," it just means that you should start focusing on other areas of your life. Guys—and girls, for that matter—don’t like to be smothered, and are attracted to confidence. If you fill your life with activities and friends that don't involve your love-interest you will have created a fulfilling life for yourself and won't need a man to make you happy. That will, perversely, make men more likely to find you attractive.
6. Never go to bed angry.
Translation: If people are saying this to you, they might be trying to tell you to be more forgiving. Learning how to let go of resentments can do wonders for your relationship and your health. That said, it's OK to go to bed angry as long as you've agreed to address the problem later. Sometimes a cooling off period can actually help resolve conflict.
7. Two words: date night.
Translation: This bit of advice for couples in long-term relationships is a reminder to keep the romance alive, even when day-to-day responsibilities and routines loom large. If someone suggests that you need a date night, perhaps you need to spend some time rejuvenating your relationship. Need help? Here are some ideas: 101 Ways To Improve Your Relationship Right Now