Eight years of on and off dating. Public scrutiny at every step that would be enough to drive anyone batty. The daunting prospect of negotiating both a public and personal life together. And yet Kate Middleton hung in there with her real life prince. Finally, while the couple is on vacay in Kenya, Prince William pops the question. One wonders, what were the inner workings of the relationship that made it all work out? Just how did the couple go from casual to committed?
Here are four relationship tips that Kate may have used to snag one of the most sought-after bachelors in the world. They are based on my experience with helping thousands of couples come together to find lasting love. If you want to deepen your relationship and move forward to living together or getting engaged, give these strategies a try.
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First consider this, all of my strategies are based on one cardinal rule: Avoid Seriousness and Drama. When things drag on in an uncommitted state it is easy to get frustrated, depressed and hopeless about coming together in a shared future. And then you might become serious, distant, whining, or bitching out in the relationship. Which only serves to push him farther away. Avoid this process like the plague. Instead get back to what brought you together in the first place: FUN.
Four kinds of fun are important in kindling and reigniting commitment: quiet enjoyment, humor, excitement and novel activities.
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First, create situations and interactions where you are happy, content, enjoying yourself, and having fun, and he is, too. We’ve all seen Kate and William share activities like museum exhibits, plays, movies, parks, picnics, day trips or long walks. Think about setting up activities of quiet enjoyment that you can share. They could include cooking a new dish, preparing a feast for friends or family, playing card games, hanging out at a community pool, or lounging in front of the TV and watching an entire season of that sci-fi or comedy series you both love. These activities lead to holding hands, touching, looking at and appreciating each other, which in turn produce the hormone oxytocin—the bonding and attachment hormone.
Quieter activities for your downtime together are perfect for couples who lead stressed lives. If you want to really connect with a highly stressed guy, try not to run him around too much, and make gentle physical contact with him that tends to slow his motor down—rub his back, lie with your feet touching, or whatever works for him. When I interview these guys about their mates and why they chose them, they nearly always point to how they felt at peace around them. I’m not saying you should never go to a club and stay out all night or go bungee jumping. There’s a place for that as well. But for bonding, there’s nothing like being alone and hanging out doing something you both really enjoy.