The 1 Sweet Habit That Will Change Your Marriage Completely

man kissing woman on the headRemember how frustrating flirting was as a teen? There you were, smiling at your crush, giggling like a hyena at everything he said, and blushing furiously, only to have him still completely ignore you. Thankfully, now, we're older, wiser, and we know why! Men and women flirt differently, according to new research from Bucknell University.

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Turns out, guys are super in-tune to physical touch. Makes sense: Evolutionarily speaking, their goal is to procreate, so they're going to pick up ANY hint you're on board.

That also explains why men have a much less guarded approach to flirting. They think, "Hell, you never know until you try!" We women, on the other hand, are hardwired to look for security and commitment. We dig when a guy shows some gallantry, asks us out, or holds our hand.

Fortunately, flirting gets less mysterious/stress-inducing as we get older, but just because you're married doesn't mean you should stop altogether. In fact, you should still be flirting with your husband.

"It's fun and keeps the energy up in your relationship," says Tina B. Tessina, PhD, a.k.a. "Dr. Romance," a psychotherapist and author of Love Styles: How to Celebrate Your Differences. "It lets your partner know you're interested and that you still care."

More from The Stir: Cheeky List of Flirting Rules From 1920s Still Rings True Today

So, how to do that? Fortunately, no need to fall into a shelf of expensive china, like so many bumblingly sweet rom-com heroines.

If he moves closer to you on the couch or touches your arm, "don't flinch, move away, or start talking about bills or something unrelated," advises Tessina. "Relax, focus on him, and maybe touch back."

To get his attention by flirting, Tessina advises approaching your man from behind, putting your arms around him, then backing away.

"The backing away is what makes it flirting," she explains. "It's an invitation for him to come after you."

Other ways to get your flirt on:

Look into his eyes and smile. "He'll automatically feel more understood and cared about," Tessina says.

Ramp up the sweetness. "Thoughtfulness, thank yous, and gestures of politeness and affection are the WD-40 of your marriage."

Refresh his memory. "It creates so much good feeling to remember how you were when you were dating..." says Tessina. "Reminding yourself of your solid history together is a way to increase your bond."

If only our 15-year-old selves had these unbeatable tips!

How do you and your husband flirt with each other?

 

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