There are two very different dynamics in the new stage when you’re just getting to know somebody. When you’re flirting with them they might like you or they might not like you, or you might like them or you may not like them.
The relationship phase is the stable phase where you guys have fallen into a rhythm and you know you like each other and you can depend on each other. The advantage of the first stage is that it’s unpredictable. Unpredictability is excitement, it’s adventure, and it’s suspense. The advantage of the secondstage is that you have constancy, you have harmony, and you can count on this, but you don’t have the adventure, you don’t have the suspense, and you don’t have the pins and needles of what’s going to happen next. Over time that can kill a relationship because it becomes drudgery, it becomes routine, and it becomes boring.
So how do you find the balance? Well I’ll tell you. The way that you find the balance is that you intentionally maintain and bring into the relationship those aspects of spontaneity, unpredictability, surprise, and suspense that are healthy and they are welcome, and you take away all of the unpredictability that’s toxic or that’s harmful. You want to be dependable, but unpredictable. How do you achieve that?
The way that you achieve that is you find those things which are needs, those things which are requirements on the part of your mate, and you respect those and you fulfil those. If your mate expects you to obviously never cheat on them, absolutely you have to be predictable in that regard.
To pick less coarse an example, if your mate expects you to pick them up at a certain time after work then you’re there for them and you pick them up at a certain time. That’s the predictability that’s healthy, that’s the constancy, and the dependability that you want. At the same time there are things that they would not expect. They would not expect a sudden unexpected date, where you pick them up and instead of going home you go to restaurant where you have some special event already planned. Maybe it’s a mystery dinner or it’s a movie or something like that and it’s not routine. You have to maintain those and it becomes planned spontaneity, but it’s worth it.
Ultimately everything is scripted and everything you do in life follows a certain consumption, implementation, and executive stage; you think about it in your head and you do it. The spontaneity part it comes in the fact that it doesn’t require a lot coordination between two people and because of that to the other person it’s spontaneous. You could plan these months in advance, but the whole idea is you are core-dependable in those things which are needful to your partner. Then you add a layer, a frosting if you will, of spontaneity to those things which are on the romance, on the entertainment, and on the adventurous side. You have to maintain both in order to make a healthy relationship last.
If you don’t maintain the spontaneity it will become routine, and if you don’t maintain the constancy it will become distressful. Find that balance.