How to Keep the Relationship Interesting After the First Year

Enjoying new activities together can keep things fresh after a year-long relationship.
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During your first year together, you'll likely spend many hours talking and getting to know one another. The novelty and thrill may wear off as your relationship becomes long-term. Though your relationship will change as time goes on, there are plenty of ways to keep your relationship interesting after the first year.

1 Time - Together and Apart

Maybe you no longer spend as much time together as you once did - or every spare moment is devoted to your relationship and partner. Learning how to balance your relationship with other parts of your life can actually help keep your relationship interesting. Spending time with friends, pursuing an old hobby or going on a vacation by yourself can help you unwind and meet needs outside of your relationship. While your partner can meet many needs, it is wise to remember that your boyfriend cannot meet all of your needs.

2 New Experiences

Early on, you may have dated frequently and the two of you may have had many new experiences together. Couples may struggle with doing the same things repeatedly in long-term relationships, according to clinical psychologist Lisa Firestone, in "Psychology Today." Volunteering in your community together, visiting a new restaurant or taking a recreational course together can keep the spark alive after a year together.

3 Working Out Problems

As time wears on, partners may forget how to communicate frequently and openly. Disagreements may go without resolution and arguments may threaten to tear your relationship apart, according to the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh article "Handling Disagreements." Avoid bringing up your partner's past mistakes, assuming you know what she is thinking or feeling or blaming and calling names during disagreements. Instead, go into the conversation calmly and keep the focus on reaching a solution, not on getting revenge. You might tell your partner, "I feel hurt when you don't call on the days we don't see each other, because I don't understand why we can't have a five-minute conversation."

4 Keep on Giving

Remember how you used to leave love notes at your girlfriend's front doorstep? Maybe you would leave your boyfriend's favorite candy resting on the hood of his car. Thoughtful gestures, surprises and gifts can go a long way in keeping a relationship exciting after the first year, according to clinical psychologist Lisa Firestone. When you are on the receiving end of your partner's kind words or gestures, it is also important to show plenty of appreciation and gratitude.

Candice Coleman worked in the public school system as a middle school and high school substitute teacher. In addition to teaching, she is also a tutor for high school and college students.