How to Keep A Relationship Alive

I was listening to a David DeAngelo interview with a guy named Gay Hendricks about what makes a successful relationship.

Gay & Kathlyn Hendricks

Gay Hendricks is a psychologist with a PhD from Standford. He’s written a lot of books on the subject of relationships and the mind-body connection. 25 of those books were written with his wife, who’s also a psychologist. They got some acclaim when Oprah featured them together on her show. And ever heard of the underground classic “Radical Honesty”? He helped Brad Blanton publish that book. But his best credential is probably that he’s been married for like 30 years and he and his wife are still in love.

His take was it takes 3 things to keep a relationship alive.

1. Complete and total honesty. Most of us humans walk around the world deceiving others and deceiving ourselves. If you’re completely honest with her, and she’s honest with you, neither of you hide. Instead, you allow yourself to be seen completely. Transparent. That’s how you get intimacy. And that’s how you get communication.

2. Take responsibility for your own actions. We humans are also quick to criticize, point the finger and find fault with each other. We do all that before we look at ourselves and see our part in things. It always takes two to tango. If something goes awry, it’s not that she’s a bitch. You had your part to play in things. Before blaming or criticizing, look to yourself first and learn what you could have done better. She must do the same. This creates a positive environment, not a negative one. Who wants to be in a negative environment? Create a positive environment. Don’t criticize. Rather, see her good, and take responsibility for yourself.

3. Have your own life, and always seek to grow. A good relationship is one where both people can develop as human beings. Seek to grow continuously, and find a woman who wants to grow and develop herself continuously, too. Otherwise the relationship will become co-dependent and will choke you and her. Love your woman, but love her second. Don’t make your relationship #1. She’ll feel smothered. Make your deepest purpose in life #1.

4. I’d add a fourth thing: sex. Woody Allen said it best: “once the sex goes, the whole relationship goes.” Without sex, what do you have? Exactly. A friendship. Sex is a super-glue. It keeps a couple together, and it keeps the passion alive. Sex is communication. It creates physical intimacy and unity that words alone can never accomplish.

A lot of people when they get into a relationship, think all the work’s been done. Why put the effort in anymore? They stop stop looking or being their best, most attractive selves. Everything you did to win your woman by putting your best foot forward, NEVER STOP DOING.

Keep creating sexual tension, keep being interesting and being the man, have a life outside the relationship, and don’t ever stop being that obnoxious couple. Once you stop, that’s when the relationship goes south. Keep creating those wonderful feelings you felt at the beginning of a relationship. And keep seeing the best in her.

The poet-artist Kahlil Gibran

Kahlil Gibran, Lebonese Poet & Artist, 1883 – 1931

talks about relationship and space in the chapter “On Marriage” in his book “The Prophet.” Here marriage refers to relationships, too:

Ay, you shall be together even in the silent memory of God.

But let there be spaces in your togetherness,

And let the winds of the heavens dance between you.

Love one another, but make not a bond of love:

Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.

Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup.

Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf.

Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone,

Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music.

Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.

For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.

And stand together yet not too near together:

For the pillar of the temple stand apart,

And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadows.

Painting by Kahlil Gibran

4 thoughts on “How to Keep A Relationship Alive

  1. blue

    hi Renaissan,

    first up love the articles, very well written and full of good info.

    i need some help with something. i am kind of getting alright at picking up now, i can go out and almost any time i do i get a girl back to my place and sleep with her. but i want a girl that i can keep, not just one nightstands. i have been finding that lots of the girls flake on meeting up again, if i try to arrange another meet that is. With some i dont care, but in the last month or two i picked up three absolute 10’s, no joke easily the best if have ever got, and not just physically but the emotional connection too. one in particular i didnt sleep with because to didnt want her to get buyers remorse. we met up for a few dates and she said they were the best dates ever, for some stupid reason i didnt have a condom so we didnt sleep together but instead i got a hand job and went down on her for ages, which she said was amazing. i thought it was all looking good but then just found out she has started seeing another guy and has been for the past 2 weeks, and that they met after we last hooked up. and similar things happened with the other 2

    what is happening? i get them, think im looking at a new girl then they start seeing other guys like a few days later

    help me out so it doesnt keep happening.please!

    and info on how to get the last one back would be great, even though i know i shouldnt bother, i have a bit of one-itis with this one

    thanks in advance and keep up the amazing work


  2. renaissan

    Hey Blue,

    First off, thanks for your kind words. Those kinds of words are always encouraging.

    Second off, you sound really advanced. AWESOME on picking up three 10’s! You obviously have game. So I just wanted to give you a nod of respect there.

    Third off, let’s dig into your question. To be honest, I don’t have a clearcut answer, because I wasn’t there. By everything you’ve told me it sounds like you did great. Without having seen the pickup in person it’s tough to give you a feedback outside of what you’ve told me. Still, here are some thoughts:

    a) So what if she’s seeing other guys? Sounds like you’re seeing other girls. When I was going through my polyamory stage it was totally cool for one of my girls to see another guy, because I was seeing other girls. That was the agreement. Just because she’s seeing another guy, does it mean it’s over between you two? I mean, there’s no ring on her finger, right?

    b) If you have oneitis with this one girl, like you said, the best solution is to see other girls. Otherwise, the girl might become the #1 thing in your life. That usually translates as “he wants me too much.” We pursue that which retreats. We flee from that which chases. When you see other girls, it translates as “he has value for other women, hm, let me take another look.” When you don’t need her, that’s when she wants you. Another way to deal with oneitis is by putting your energies into your passions or your mission in life, rather than trying to “get” her back. I have a feeling you know this already. I know it’s easier to talk about it. It’s harder when you’re in that situation.

    c) When something goes wrong in the game, it’s usually a breakdown in something that happened earlier. For example, if a girl refuses to give her number it wasn’t because the guy’s number-closing technique was bad, it was a breakdown in something earlier. If you have three 10’s that are flaking on you, something might have broken down earlier in your game. For example, let me ask you some questions:

    1. How long was your pickup? Did it last between 4-10 hours? If you skipped comfort and went for the sex too quickly, sometimes girls flake later. You had mentioned trying to avoid buyer’s remorse so this might not have been a problem, but I wanted to make sure.

    2. Did you share laughs, tease her, create sexual tension with play-fighting and banter? You know how much girls hate to laugh.

    3. Did you qualify? This makes her chase you and value your interest in her even more.

    4. Did you spend time creating an emotional connection with her?

    5. Did you take her to multiple venues before inviting her back to your place? This makes it seem like she’s known you longer than she really has, and creates even more of a bond.

    6. When she was back at your place did you spend some more time building comfort and a connection before seducing her, or did you pounce?

    7. What was the sex like?

    If you did all these things, and you may have, I know you’d be a guy she’d want to see over and over again. You’d be very different than most guys a girl might come across. Again, I know you’ve got game but there may be just some minor tweak you need to avoid this flaking from happening again.

    Let me know. I’d love to hear back from you.

  3. blue

    hi Renaissan

    before you continue reading i apologise for the long response

    great response! you definitely have a way with words and have inspired me to be a better writer and the answer was very well constructed too.
    i agree with point A, i’m not worried if she sees other people, i’m not trying to own her, i just want to be able to take her on a nice date like once a week or so and spend the night with her but when she said she was seeing someone i didn’t really know how to respond best so never articulated those thoughts.
    all the pick ups i do typically fit into the time frame you mention, i work hard to create good tension through banter, play fighting etc and then work on forming a strong emotional connection too. i try to jump venues to at least 3 different spots and make sure i build a state where we become an ‘us’ as opposed to ‘you and i’ then i always spend time before seduction building more comfort and tension. since my pick ups are getting better i have been doing a lot to improve my sexual performance too and without sounding like a douche i am fairly certain i leave the girls with a good experience and satisfied.
    i’m wondering if maybe i’m making the girls feel under pressure, like i give them such a good night or day etc that they build things up too much and back out in future, or maybe they feel like i am ready to marry them after a night and get scared off? perhaps stating at the start of the interaction that i’m not interested in anything heavy could help? or maybe i don’t get them to qualify themselves to me enough or i’m not enough of a challenge after we have spent a night together. i refrain from compliments generally but in bed i try to use them a bit to make the girls feel special and like they matter, which they are and do at that time. so i’m thinking i may need more of a badboy type edge to my game (not my strong point)?
    i know i shouldn’t chase as well because it conveys neediness but i figure girls of a high standard are approached every day, so if i play it cool and act more aloof and another guy comes along in the meantime i will lose my window of opportunity. i also understand i should just go out and get more girls to cure the one-itis, but i recently had a bike accident and have been forced to rest in bed and hospital following surgeries so its making that part a little hard hahaha

    again great work and any further help would be much appreciated


    1. renaissan

      Hey Blue,

      That biking accident with the following surgeries doesn’t sound fun. I hope you recover as soon as possible.

      Your analysis is fantastic.

      Again, it sounds like you’ve got great game. In fact, I wonder if you’re the Don Juan kind of seducer, someone who’s romantic and a killer in bed. If so, AWESOME. Don’t lose that. However, if you feel like being a challenge might not be your strong point, strengthening that will make you unstoppable.

      If that’s your strength and weakness, we have something in common. My strength was being romantic, too. How to have that “bad boy edge” mystified me for the longest time.

      What transformed my game was learning how to banter. What’s cool about banter is you get to challenge her and have that bad boy edge without being a prick. You don’t even have to play “aloof” and risk losing your target. You just playfully push her away. She’s laughing and chasing you at the same time. How cool is that?

      Now, you said earlier in your response that you “try” to banter and play-fight. When you say “try,” that sounds like it might be a red flag. What kind of stuff do you do when you banter? And how late or early in your game do you do this?


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