Ah, flirting. It was so fun back when you were dating...and it came so naturally. He'd whisper a little something in your ear, and you would immediately get butterflies in your stomach. Or she would tease you relentlessly and you would softly - note the word softly - smack her with a rolled up magazine. Ah, the good old days.
You and your spouse may be pro's at flirting (if so, keep it up!), but chances are that in your marriage flirting may have become a long-lost art. Sad day.
If you really want to nurture your marriage in big ways, then it is time to reintroduce flirting, because flirting works in marriage.
It really does.
I'm here to tell you, folks, that whatever level of flirting is currently going on in your relationship, it isn't enough. You can up your flirting game, and in return, enjoy a more connected - not to mention FUN - marriage relationship. Yes, you will be that couple, the one that everyone watches and admires and wishes they could be. No more wishing, time to learn everything you ever wanted to know about flirting in marriage. Dun dun dun...
What is flirting?
According to the Merriam Webster Dictionary, one of the definitions of flirting is:
"To behave in a way that shows a sexual attraction for someone but is not meant to be taken seriously." (here)
Now, while I don't LOVE that definition, it works.
The part I don't like is the "is not meant to be taken seriously," part because marriage is meant to be taken seriously. Very seriously. However, you don't have to take yourself, or your spouse, too seriously every second of every day.
So, I like to think of the "not meant to be taken seriously," part to mean being more playful with your spouse, instead. Oh, and the "shows a sexual attraction" part? Perfectly acceptable and encouraged in marriage. But you already knew that.
READ: HOW MUCH SEX DOES YOUR RELATIONSHIP NEED?
Your marriage needs more coyness and messing around. More laughter and touch.
Flirting will nurture your marriage because flirting means you and your spouse will start to pay more attention to each other and will start to give each other the time of day. Again.
Admit it, it's all too easy to live together as husband and wife without really acknowledging each other much, or connecting in meaningful ways.
You two need to have more FUN together.
Flirting will do the job. It will not only amuse both of you, but it will also reconfirm your attraction and adoration for each other.
Finally, flirting will help you and the love of your life to be more physically and emotionally close. And that is just what your marriage needs, and what both of you really long for, whether or not you are willing to admit it just now.
How often should you flirt with your spouse?
Alllll dayyyy evvvvery day, people. Do it.
Okay, you don't have to flirt all day, but you should flirt with your spouse at least once a day. Some days will just be more flirty days than others, and that is okay, but you should make an INTENTIONAL effort to flirt with your spouse daily - at least until it just becomes the norm.
Learning to nurture your marriage is all about intentionality - about choosing to do certain things, or to respond in certain ways, or to make certain choices that will invite more happiness into your life and into your marriage. And flirting is one of those intentional things. It just is. You've just got to be intentional about it.
Where and when should you flirt with your spouse?
In public and in private. Morning, noon and night.
You could even make a date out of it and pretend like you just met and flirt it up (all to the enjoyment of those around you at the baseball game, right?). There is just something about flirting with your spouse in front of her friends, or his family, or in front of the kids (they need to see their parents flirting!) that makes your relationship all the more solid, enjoyable, and fun.
Now don't forget that flirting in private is just as important, if not more important, than flirting in public because your sweet spouse needs to feel that affirmation of your love for him or her on the regular - in the privacy of your own home, just between the two of you.
READ: HOW TO CREATE BEDTIME RITUALS THAT WILL NURTURE YOUR MARRIAGE
How do you flirt with your spouse?
It may have been a while since you truly flirted with your spouse. You've still got it though. It may feel and look awkward at first, but with practice you and your spouse will be pros once again, and you will feel like the flame of your love has been rekindled in a whole new way.
Yes, you can learn to flirt. You can practice flirting. You can become a more flirtatious person (but only towards your spouse, of course!).
Flirting may take effort, in fact it should take effort, and some may call it work, but you can call it fun because the most important key to flirting is to have fun!
With all that said, here are five awesome tips to help you be more flirtatious and more fun in your marriage.
Touch, touch, touch! Touch his elbow, move her hair out of her eyes, smack his bum, wink at her from across the room, hold his hand, rub her leg. You get the picture. You are married people, so don't be shy! Run your fingers through his hair. Give him a quick shoulder rub and then start kissing him all over. Accidentally bump into her, and then use that bump as an excuse to hug or kiss her. Rub your finger up his forearm slowly, give him your best sultry glance, and ask him how his day was. Put your finger over her lips and just kiss her. Ah yes, you are starting to remember how much fun flirting with your spouse is...keep at it.
With all that touching, you are bound to start laughing out loud. Laugh at everything he says or does. He will think you are crazy, but it will lead to a lot of fun. Tease and taunt him or her in fun ways. If you are washing dishes, put soap bubbles on his face. Put an ice cube down the back of her shirt. Grab his phone, tell him if he wants it he has to catch you, and then run away! Have your chase lead to your bedroom, where you can fall on the bed exhausted, start a tickle fight, or just cuddle. Or suggest an arm wrestle and let it lead to a full-on flirt-fight. Don't feel embarrassed if you feel like a teenager again - all this flirting will keep you young, and it is healthy for your marriage! Water fights are always fun too...
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3. Give your spouse your complete attention.
Keep your eyes on him. Listen intently to everything she has to say. For a few minutes ignore the kids, the teenagers, or that text message - stare at him and bat your eyelashes. If he asks, "Do you want something?" reply dramatically, "Why yes, yes I do." Then wink. Give her your best eyebrow raise and then tell her what a babe she is. When you are out and about, look over at him and say, "I'm totally into you," and then grab his arm and squeeze it tight. Lean in close to her, practically fall into her, just so you can stare into her eyes and tell her she smells amazing. Admit it, you've forgotten how much fun flirting is (and how good a little silly is for the soul).
4. Go heavy on the compliments.
Just lay it out there - smooth like butter. Slip your arms around your husband's waist as he cooks dinner and say, "Babe, you are the most amazing cook in the world, and I'm madly in love with you." When you walk past your wife stop, walk back, do a double take and simply comment, "Dang, you are gorgeous! Just had to do a double-take." Then take her by the hand and twirl her around the kitchen floor. She will love it. Use pet names for each other when you need something, and always use your manners. Usually playing coy + being a bit dramatic = the perfect formula to add the flirtatious vibe to any compliment you pay your spouse. Try it. It works.
READ: HOW TO AVOID FALLING OUT OF LOVE - PART 1
5. Use technology.
So this obviously isn't nearly as fun as flirting in person, but it is a great way to prep each other for some flirtatious fun when you are together again. So, if you are apart, send a flirty text or Facebook message to your husband. Or send her an email during the day, reminding her about something hilarious that happened - an inside joke that only the two of you share. Use technology to your advantage when you aren't together.
See, it's not all that hard to get your flirt back on. Don't let your awkwardness in being coy, flirtatious and fun hold you back. Your marriage deserves the attention and excitement that flirting will bring. You may look a little pathetic at first, but your spouse is bound to see you as delightful and attractive for trying. So, commit now to never stop flirting your with your spouse. '
Photo Credit: Caitlinn Mahar-Daniels
“Love is the greatest gift when given. It is the highest honor when received.”
- Fawn Weaver
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