The Secret To Getting Out Of A 'Relationship Rut' In Your Love Life

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Love

Everyone experiences a relationship rut now and then.

Nothing is wrong just because things feel a little dull. Feeling bored, stuck, or uninspired are just like little memos to yourself, calling you to pay attention. So, tune in to those feelings and see what beliefs are creating them.

How to get out of a relationship rut

According to Word Hippo, a rut is "a habit or pattern of behavior that has become dull and unproductive but is hard to change."

The reason couples stay in marital ruts is that they're repeating the same patterns. But, unfortunately, repeating the same actions gets them the same experience.

So why do you keep doing the same things in your relationship?

It's because of a sentence in your mind that creates a feeling, which fuels your actions.

RELATED: The #1 Thing To Do If Your Marriage Is Stuck In A Rut

A weekend routine for a stagnant relationship.

Every Friday night, you do the same thing, which you find boring.

Saturdays, you do the same thing and feel uninspired.

Sundays are the same and you feel like you're going through the motions.

You're unhappy and, yet, nothing changes.

Maybe you're thinking, "He needs to make a change," and so you feel passive and helpless.

Possibly, you may even be thinking about how to get out of the rut but don't know what to do first, so you feel totally hopeless.

Or, you could be thinking, "I'm so unhappy," which creates feelings of discouragement that only exacerbate the problem.

Feeling passive, confused, or discouraged are not situations that will stop you from feeling trapped in a relationship.

The most important thing to do is to consider what result you would like to have.

Don’t make it something that requires another person to change.

If you're feeling stuck in a relationship, then imagine what result you'd experience if it changed and own that result yourself.

Maybe the result you want is, "Weekends are refreshing." To create that ideal weekend, you would need brand new actions.

If you created a refreshing weekend, what would you be doing and not doing? That is something only you can answer.

For me, it's doing the following:

I would plan rather than fall into the weekend haphazardly.

I would create a balance of downtime, chore time, connecting time, and reflecting time.

I would explore new things to do with my partner that would be interesting.

I would open up to new ideas that I had not tried before.

I would invite my husband or family to participate in planning the weekend.

RELATED: 4 Fun Ways Couples Can Spice Things Up To Escape A Relationship Rut (And Fall In Love Again!)

When I think, "I can create a refreshing weekend," I feel inspired.

When I feel inspired, I do all those things I listed above, including daydreaming, inviting others, and thoughtful planning. 

If you're in a relationship rut and not taking new actions, it’s because of your current thought patterns.

Stop right now and find that thought pattern. What is it?

Now, what feeling is it triggering? 

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How you feel is ultimately determined by what you choose to think. So, how do you get unstuck and create new results?

You change your thoughts, which creates new feelings, fueling new actions that give you new results.

RELATED: 9 Proven Ways To Calm Your Anxious Thoughts And Finally Move On With Your Life

You cannot change your thoughts if you're not even aware of what you're thinking. And until you start paying attention, your thoughts will unintentionally run the show.

The landscape of your thoughts is very similar to that of a toddler. If you're not intentional in managing your mind, you can lose control. 

You would never give your toddler a knife and then leave him home alone while you head to work.

Yet, that's what you do with your thoughts when you don't manage them.

Unintentional thinking starts running the show and then you act like you have no choice but to feel the way you're feeling and do the things you're doing.

There are so many thoughts available to you. You get to manage the thoughts running around in your mind.

Find the thought that creates the feeling that leads to the desired action. Share those actions as inspiration to find new patterns with your partner.

That, my friend, is how you get out of a relationship rut.

RELATED: Yes, My Marriage Is Boring — But I Wouldn't Have It Any Other Way

Jill M. Lillard, MA LPC, is a Gottman Certified Couples Therapist and Life Coach who helps Christian women step into powerful and steady lives no matter what their circumstances. Jill has designed several online courses and coaching groups, including The Happiest Lives Academy, as a catalyst in healing emotions and relationships through interactive learning, feedback, and thought-provoking questions.