Romantic relationships can the most exhilarating experiences of your life, they can also be very dramatic. If you can make it through the 7 phases of love, you can have the breakthrough bliss of the expanded and evolved couple and share your love with the world.
Phase 1: Falling in Love
The first phase is what gets us into relationships in the first place. It’s that exciting time when this person makes your heart soar and you’re higher than a kite (actually you are because you’re overdosing on love hormones, like dopamine and oxytocin.
In your honeymoon daze, you see all your wants, needs, and desires fulfilled by this person, and you project your dreams upon your love interest, therefore he or she appears to be your dream come true.
Phase 2: Coupling
Following some time of falling in love with someone, the two of you agree that you are somehow meant to be with each other and you go about the business of building a relationship together.
In the coupling phase, you’re getting to know each other better and beginning to see what life would be like as a couple. You begin building real appreciation and a sense of secure bonding is taking place as your relationship moves beyond surface issues and begins to deepen.
Phase 3: Sober Up
One day you wake up and ask yourself, “Who is this?” man or woman whom I’ve aligned myself with? The love hormones are wearing thin, and you’re starting to see him or her as he or she really is, and you think this isn’t the person you fell in love with.
You’ve been together long enough to feel comfortable enough to speak your piece about how your partner is not what you thought he or she was, and your partner returns in kind, as the green grass on the other side of the fence seems so very attractive.
Phase three is the place where most relationships break down, as either one or both parties feel like living life, like this, would be unbearable, though some push-through to the next phase.
Phase 4: Deepening
In phase four, one or both parties feel as though the relationship is worth pursuing, instead of posturing for control or splitting up, they seek to find healthier, more mature ways to look at life shared by two individuals, working thorough problems and disagreements while finding effective solutions without compromising their connection.
This is the make it or break it phase as the partners are more transparent and open with each other, moving forward with increased vulnerability, so things can get a bit messy, but by supporting each other with openness and honesty, sharing and caring, real growth and maturity of each individual can be immense, and the surviving couple thrives as they grow and change both as individuals and as a unified force.
Phase 5: Genuine Bonding
This is when the age-old charge, “the two shall become one,” feels like real romantic love fulfilled. When you’ve reached phase five, your phase one expectations seem silly in comparison, because now you see your unique combination as an expanded entity, an extension of both you and your partner’s lives, with endless opportunities.
If you’ve been resistant to the idea of marriage before, once you’ve reached phase five, you start entertaining the thought of getting married, embracing the idea that you could, and would prefer to, live the rest of your life in a relationship, like this.
Phase 6: Comfort
Phase six is where it gets tricky because you’re comfortable. You’ve made it through phases one through five and living your life with this other person is good, pleasant, and good enough, but left on idle for awhile this comfort can lead to complacency.
Some time has passed and it looks as though you’ve fallen into an endless recurring routine and the relationship has lost its sheen. This is yet another phase where one of the parties might be looking for the exit sign leading to a little more excitement.
Not to worry, all advanced couples reach this stage (it is commonly referred to as the seven-year-itch, though it could come at any time) and you could also seek to rekindle the flame of true love and find yourself headed for the final phase of romantic love.
Phase 7: True and Enduring Love
You have weathered the storms of life in love together and hand-in-hand you have persevered, broken through barriers, shared epiphanies, expanded and ever-evolving as individuals and as a unified force in and for love.
You have established a meaningful relationship in perfect push/pull harmony which is a delicate balance to maintain but it is so worth it. You welcome the challenges, and when things get tough, you are more apt to lean in and trust your partner, who has been there for you as your love has withstood the test of time.
Openness, honesty, and trust are reciprocal and there is no greater sense of safety and security, and others look on with awe.
From this phase of love, the two of you combined can impact the world for the greater good, as your love inspires others, giving them hope as they aspire to build true and enduring love relationships.
The two of you are separately and “as one flesh” living your best life and making the world a better place.