Things going stale? 6 proven ways to keep the fire burning

Krista Garcia
Research group Nielsen recently conducted a survey on the state of love in Metro Manila. Is romance still alive in our culture, or is it becoming a thing of the past?

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE. Pull your partner close, hold tight

MANILA, Philippines — Is romance still alive in our culture? Or is it becoming a thing of the past?

Research agency Nielsen recently conducted a survey on the state of love in Metro Manila. They polled couples from two different age groups who have been dating for more than 6 months or married for more than 5 years.

Based on the results from the study, here are some tips on how to keep the love alive and burning:

1. If you feel that you arent on the same page, say so. Talking, discussing expectations – it might not sound romantic, but it’s critical.

For your partner for example, doing little things for you may be his way of showing love or affection. But you wouldn’t get that if your idea of romance is rooted in grand, over-the-top gestures, right?

The research showed that younger men saw themselves as more romantic compared to how their partners perceived them. When asked to rate their romance factor on a scale of 1-10, 32% of single males aged 18-25 rated Filipino men as a perfect 10, but only 15% of their female counterparts gave the same score. 

The survey results also said that women expect to be on the “receiving end” of romance more frequently than men expect to give it.

Moreover, when it comes to romance, there appears to be a higher level of satisfaction among older or married couples. 47% of married couples said that they were perfectly satisfied with the level of romance in their relationship, while only 33% of dating couples said the same.

This may be due to the time spent together – couples who have been together longer may be more attuned to what the other is looking for in a relationship. Work to learn your partner’s motivations and habits, especially when it comes to navigating relationships. 

2. Digital ligawan is okay these days. When asked about courtship methods, the single guys and girls cited texting as a key component, with many relationships blossoming through SMS, calls, and social media.

A note on digital flirting or courtship: it’s alright to carry out entire conversations through stickers or emojis, but if you really want to show that you care, go out of your way to ask your SS (that’s special someone) how their day went, how they’re feeling, or whether they prefer their pizza cut into 6 or 8 slices. Then ask them out if they’re free next Friday. Chances are if you do with the right sincerity and attention, you’ll get a “Sure :)” along with a small caricature of a girl munching on some pepperoni. 

(READ: 4 Money mistakes couples shouldn’t make on Valentine’s Day)

3. Kiss them passionately. Never underestimate the power of puckering up! Sometimes, a simple kiss is all it takes to bring out your partner’s romantic mood.

Most male and female respondents agreed that the most romantic gesture is a passionate kiss, over other chaste gestures such as treating a woman like a queen or cooking for them.

More than 40% of respondents also believe that romance is defined by physical touch over other factors. Sex and kissing top their list of definitive romantic moves, followed by affectionate acts like showing tenderness and sweetness.

Close your eyes, pull him or her close, and just go for it.

4. Agree to (a little) PDA. Certain types of public displays of affection (PDA) aren’t appropriate. But most of the younger respondents ranked hand-holding in public as the sweetest physical gesture their partner could do for them, and that should be acceptable.

It’s not hard to understand why. Imagine this scene: it’s a warm, windy afternoon, and you’re hanging with someone you’ve known for a while. You’re walking, laughing, and completely at ease with each other. You really like this person, and you think he/she likes you too. You’re not sure. But you’re dying to find out.

Mid-conversation, your hands touch. This person grabs your fingers. And. Doesn’t. Let. Go. Suddenly, you know. And now, everyone walking and talking around you knows as well.

5. Surprise them with a hug. Most younger men said that they also love it when their partners give them an unexpected hug.

Girls, don’t worry about making the first move — guys are thrilled when the girl takes the initiative to show affection.

Another thing the guys said they like is when women smell really good. Take note — it’s not about smelling like a million bucks. Most guys really just love that fresh, clean smell over heavy scents.

(Read: [Woman Up!] Make a move, ask him out!)

6. Make them feel like royalty even at home. In the end, it’s not about the grand expressions of undying devotion. The simplest acts still make the most impact. 

Apparently, the way to a man’s heart is still through his stomach. Most married men said that they feel most romantic after their wife cooks their favorite meal for them.

Conversely, most married women said that being treated to dinner is one of their favorite deeds from their husbands.

Both single and married women also agreed that being treated like a queen for a day, and being taken care of at home, can improve levels of romance in their relationships.

They even ranked it higher than being treated to a surprise getaway or being brought flowers and chocolates at work.

Do you agree with the survey results? How do you define and show romance in your own relationship? Let us know! —

* Survey on The State of Romance in the PH, conducted by Nielsen in Metro Manila among 400 adults last August 2013

Photo of couple holding hands from Shutterstock

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