Long-term committed couples frequently claim that love is a choice. Every day, you get to choose whether or not you want to foster love in your relationship.
Great love can be felt in many different ways, including romantically, platonically, and companionably, but it almost never comes from an outside force. At some point, falling in love requires a lot of effort and a decision. Is it a feeling or a decision to be in love? Discover the solutions by continuing to read.
Is Love a Choice Or a Feeling?
Love is a choice and a decision because what you do determines whether it endures or dies. You are in charge of how you conduct yourself in your interpersonal interactions and how far you are willing to go to overcome obstacles.
Love is what you choose when you decide to work on intimacy, communication, trust, or emotional stability. What about hormones? If hormones play a role in love, it may seem like an uncontrollable, unending force of nature.
But Elizabeth Earnshaw, a licensed marriage and family therapist from Philadelphia, says that while hormones can make you feel infatuated in the early stages of love, lasting love necessitates making deliberate choices.
For example, hormones might keep you attracted to your partner sexually, but that’s not the same as being in love.
“As your relationship grows, your hormones will no longer be the driver of the feelings,” she says. “You must therefore control your feelings, as a result. You achieve this by consciously deciding to be a loving partner.”
At first, falling in love might seem simple because your hormones are directing you in that direction. It may take work and action to develop love, which denotes emotional closeness.
If you feel you love your partner despite the absence of loving gestures and actions from them, you may be dealing with an anxious attachment style or a personality disorder, among others.
What is Love?
When the initial emotions and symptoms of love pass, people frequently think they made a mistake. They might think they weren’t really in love after all.
However, in romantic relationships, this eventual change is frequently typical. It occurs because the brain adjusts gradually over time rather than continuing to produce the same high levels of feel-good chemicals like dopamine.
It might be simple to mistake comfort for a breakup. But the inverse might also be accurate. Long-term lovers might sense a sense of security and comfort in their partner because of this.
How to Make Love Last Long?
Many times, infatuated couples want to make sure their relationship endures. All relationships may face challenges and demand work. Love can be expressed in actions as well as words. Here are some suggestions for maintaining a healthy love life over time.
Take Care of Yourself
You may have heard the expression, “you can’t pour from an empty cup.” This idiom frequently refers to the idea that helping someone else should come after taking care of your own needs for happiness, health, and safety.
Although having a partner can be a source of happiness and positivity in your life (and in theirs), you might also find it beneficial to pursue other interests. You might be a better partner if you take care of yourself. According to studies, practicing optimism while taking care of oneself can increase marital satisfaction.
Learn Your Partner’s Love Language
The Five Love Languages is a well-known book by Gary Chapman. He discusses the various ways that people can experience and express love in this book. The five “languages” include:
- Physical touch
- Acts of service
- Gift-giving and receiving
- Words of affirmation
- Quality time
It might be easier for you to express your love to your partner in a way that they can relate to.
Focus on the Positive
People frequently place more emphasis on their shortcomings than on their accomplishments. However, doing so might make you neglect the positive aspects of your relationship. You’ll be surprised at how much more grateful you’ll become for your partner if you practice gratitude.
Spend Time Together
Spending time with one another may be prioritized by couples in contented and wholesome relationships. The basis of many relationships is that both people enjoy each other’s company, even though everyone has different needs in terms of personal time and space.
Whether you choose to do something or for how long may not matter as much as whether you both find enjoyment in one another’s company. Even though it can be very labor-intensive, many couples find that their efforts are well worth it.
Things That Can Make Love Die
Making decisions that are inconsistent with the principles of love could harm your relationship because love is a choice.
Things that undermine attraction, a strong connection, trust, or respect may be included in these love-harming behaviors and attitudes.
These are some signs that love isn’t a choice for you or your partner:
- Ignoring or dismissing your partner’s needs and concerns
- Not communicating
- Emotionally abandoning your partner
- Taking your partner for granted
- Being critical and judgmental
- Keeping secrets
- Revealing things your partner has confided in you
- Pushing someone to change the way they are to please your preferences
- Belittling your partner in private or in front of others
- No longer demonstrating affection
Conclusion: Love is a Choice
While falling in love can be a hormone-fueled whirlwind of happiness and excitement, maintaining a relationship over time requires making a conscious decision to do so.
This doesn’t mean that falling in love has to be a grueling race, but it does mean that you need to make conscious choices about how to constantly foster and safeguard intimacy, trust, and affection.
Outside of emotion, love may require work. This endeavor might entail counseling, open communication, a determination to constantly get to know your partner, and more.