Keeping Love Alive in the Time of Pandemic – Dr. Liza Leal
For many of us, 2020 was the year from hell and 2021 is the year that hell froze over.
The terrible impacts of this record-setting winter are coinciding with the peak of the coronavirus pandemic to produce more pain in more people across the nation than anything is recent memory. Who among us doesn’t need a reliable way to improve the love and warmth in our lives and get some badly needed help to relieve the stress and pain and isolation we are all feeling from covid.
Do you want more love in your life? Dr. Liza Leal author of the new book titled Cupid’s Challenge - Embracing, Restoring Love, Affection, Intimacy and Respect Through the Challenges of Chronic Pain, has some advice that can be used effectively anytime all year long.
Write a love letter
Research proves that writing to someone we love and telling them that we love them and appreciate them releases dopamine in the brain and makes you feel happier. Receiving a letter from someone you love that expresses gratitude not only increases the desire for closeness and intimacy, but can also trigger renewed interest and commitment to the relationship.
It is telling sign that therapists are busier than ever and getting an appointment to speak to one is harder than ever, even with digital technology and telehealth. The pandemic is making it harder for many couples to find private moments while working from home in tight quarters, especially if they have children.
And it’s proven that one of the best and simplest ways to help create a deeper connection in a romantic relationship is to write and deliver a love letter to the person you desire.
Even though you may be alone when you write a love letter, you will feel like you are in the company of the one you are writing to. The same warm feeling occurs in the person who receives this letter.
It’s not hard at all to take a pen to paper, or to sit down at a keyboard and get the ideas down and ready top be delivered.
You can write a short Love Letter in seven short easy steps.
Get out a blank sheet of paper or open a computer screen and write down one or more sentences for each of the following seven elements.
- Describe to them they ways you love them that makes you feel cherished.
- Tell them the specific things you like hearing them say and do, especially when they talk about you to other people.
- Tell them how they made you feel when they provided you with emotional support during a tough time, a recent crisis or a difficult experience you went through recently.
- Tell them that how you respect and admire how they are different (and better) than you in one or more ways. Recognize and praise them for these differences.
- Tell them where and how you appreciate the way they communicate well with you. Recognize them for the things they have said and tell them how they made you feel.
- Tell them how much you love to spend time with them doing the things you enjoy to do together. Tell them how you cherish those certain moments that you share together pursuing a common interest.
- Tell them how you are attracted to them physically, and how much you are interested in and wanting to be physically intimate with them.
If you can be specific and sincere when you write these ideas down, you are well on your way to sharing a lifetime of love with your partner.
Now sign the letter and send it.
Follow Up and Take Action
You will dramatically improve the love you receive in return by taking additional action to reinforce the feelings you just identified.
Raise the heat by taking action. Think about the seven things your partner likes the most that you do and take actions to deliver more of it in spades.
And if instead of doing this just once a year at Valentine’s Day, decide to make this a regular feature of your life. Pay more attention to the key areas that influence the state of your relationship and jumpstart your romance to achieve greater intimacy.
Practice makes perfect.
Ask your partner what you can do to make their day better or easier. Say these three powerful words to your partner more often: “I love you”. Show affection to your partner on a regular basis.
Two people may love each other, yet not like or accept everything about each other as they are. Think about going to town and focusing on the positive things you do like about your partner. Stop yourself when you start to criticize or complain. Force yourself to say something positive instead. Compliment them. Commend their strength, their action, their self-control, whatever it is that they do.
Tell them, “I am here for you. I will stand by you” Encourage them to develop their full potential.
Feed them what they love. Create new habits and expand the activities they enjoy the most. Form new habits to help you both get by in hard times. If restrictions keep you from going out, have a weekly date at home. Turn on the music and be silly, or dance with your partner in the kitchen, or make brunch on the weekend if your partner usually cooks. Enjoy a change of scenery by taking a walk in a new location or a park, taking a drive together, and going for a hike. To a new location or destination.
Indulge them in what they love.
Learn about your partner’s favorite hobbies and support them in their enjoyment of the topic. Figure out a way to spend time with them both of you doing what the other loves. .
Listen More to Achieve Greater Understanding
Ask how they feel about something and then keep your mouth shut. Listen and learn. Let them rant and rave all they want. No talking at all. Don’t say anything except “uh huh”. Just shut up and listen and learn what your partner believes, desires, feels, and hopes. The more you listen, the more you will know and the better you will really understand, and the more you will truly be able to experience true love.
These seven elements are the foundations of emotional intimacy. They are crucial for all couples, especially those affected by chronic pain and other ongoing health issues.
Together, they form a solid roadmap for greater love – a solid path on which you and your partner can walk together hand in hand through the current pandemic and beyond.
Cupid’s Challenge, Embracing, Restoring Love, Affection, Intimacy and Respect Through the Challenges of Chronic Pain,
Liza Leal, M.D.
113 pages paperback
First Printing, 2021 ISBN-13: 978-1-951805-62-3 print edition ISBN-13: 978-1-951805-63-0 ebook edition Published by Waterside Productions
For more information visit www.everydayhealthhacker.com and www.meridianhealthinstitute
Dr. Liza Leal is board certified in Family Medicine from the American Board of Family Medicine, and lives and practices in Sugarland, Texas. She is the Chief Medical Officer of Meridian Medical Dental Healthcare and Meridian Health Institute. She received her medical degree from the University of Texas Medical School and completed her internship and residency at the Christus St Joseph Hospital in Houston. She is an active blogger and podcaster on integrated and functional approaches to health. She is also the author of the book Living Well with Chronic Pain (2015) and coauthor of the book Stem Cells Made Simple (2018) with Dr. Duncan Foulds.
Dr. Leal, knows first hand the devastation of living in chronic pain, she was diagnosed at the age of 23, her third year in medical school and was in a wheel chair the next few years. During her final year in residency, she learned to thrive again, giving up her yellow canary scooter for a pair of high heels, going from 204 lbs to 130 lbs, like many suffering from chronic illness and stress she had to change her habits to learn to live and thrive which is why she chose a path of integrated and functional medicine to help her patients get their life back too.
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