I think that this is a nearly universally accepted truth (at least in Hollywood). But no one ever talks about the process of falling out of love. Is it easy? What do I need to do? How long does it take?
The answers are: kind of; follow the steps below; it varies.
Falling out of love takes some unconscious effort. To help you here are 13 ways to fall out of love. CAUTION: by reading this list you risk bringing the effort into your consciousness and thereby undoing what your unconscious has been working on. Reader beware.
- Stop talking to each other. Don't talk about what happened during your day or who told you what. If you have a thought or a dream don't share it with your spouse. Keep your thoughts to yourself.
- Spend less time together. If you have a choice between playing a game with your husband and looking at your Facebook do the latter. On date night go out with your friends instead. Try to wake up before your wife does and go to bed after she's asleep.
- Say "I love you" less and less often. When you think it, don't say it. After a while you will think it less often and the temptation to say "I love you" will diminish. If you mess up and it accidentally slips out forgive yourself and remember that you can do better next time.
- Forget special dates. Take special dates like anniversaries, birthdays, and holidays such as Valentine's Day off of your work calendar and the calendar on your phone. When you receive a Facebook notification that it's your wife's birthday, delete it.
- Expect less. Stop anticipating those kind things that your husband often does like bringing you flowers. Dinner isn't going to be ready when you get home so don't even think about. You aren't going to really enjoy being with him so don't be disappointed when you don't.
- Stop saying thank you. When he takes out the trash don't thank him. When she makes the bed make a point to pretend like it didn't happen. When he asks if you liked that he helped with the laundry say you don't really care. This will help you be less grateful for your spouse.
- Dial back your physical intimacy. While this does include less sex hopefully you had figured that one out already. More specifically touch the small of her back less often, no more back rubs, don't put your head on his shoulder, and absolutely avoid holding hands.
- Tone down your displays of affection. If you feel obligated to get flowers don't get roses, instead pick out something cheap like daisies or maybe you can pick some dandelions. Pick plutonic, boring greeting cards for special dates (if you forget and accidentally remember one). Don't open the door for her and instead go through first yourself. You get the idea. Don't be rude but don't be so affectionate.
- Stop sleeping in the same room. Sleep in the guest room or on the couch. This will keep you from unintentionally being intimate and also helps you avoid the temptation to have a conversation late at night when you're tired and more vulnerable.
- Don't eat meals together. Come home from work late or grab a bite to eat on the way home. Then go straight to the den or living room to watch the game. For those who typically make dinner just don't make it. That way there's nothing to eat together. Or finish eating before your spouse gets home. For an extra touch you could even clean up the food before they arrive.
- Question your feelings for your spouse. Do you really still love her? Is he as attractive as I once thought? Are we meant for each other? Is this relationship a mistake?
- Focus on other people. Go out of your way to help those around you especially if it means you won't be around to help your spouse. Put their needs ahead of his.
- Be selfish. Buy that gadget you've always wanted. You deserve it because of all that you do and how difficult it is being you. Besides if she wants something she can get it herself. You deserve to take care of your wants first.
Often it requires unconscious effort to fall out of love but if we simply don't pay attention to it we will be successful.
Now on the other hand, falling more deeply into love takes conscious effort. The cool thing is that I don't need to make another list. Just do the opposite of the things above and you are well on your way!
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