Love happens in four stages. And at each stage, couples get to learn a lot of things about themselves, their partner, and relationships in general. Additionally, they get to decide whether to move forward or put an end to their relationship.
Are you wondering which they are? If so, continue reading to find that out …
1. Mate selection.
This phase starts in your childhood and continues until you choose a partner and fall in love with them. During this stage, you create the person of your dreams in your head. You imagine their physical appearance, their character, and their behavior. You also think about what habits or traits you wouldn’t like them to have.
2. Falling in love.
This is the romantic stage. You know the feeling: your heart beats like crazy, your palms sweat, and you feel like your entire body melts when you’re around your beloved.
All these physical symptoms are a result of the four chemicals in the brain: dopamine, serotonin, epinephrine, and norepinephrine. So, when you feel tension in every nerve in your body and intense passion when your partner is around, you know what is to blame.
During this stage, you and your partner focus on each other’s qualities and the things you like about each other. Your different priorities, goals, and desires, as well as a difference of opinion, are either unnoticed or dismissed.
3. Falling out of love.
The brain chemicals, mentioned previously, start functioning normally after approximately two years after you fall in love with someone. During this stage, you start seeing your beloved for who they really are. You begin to notice their annoying habits, quirks, and whims. You start to notice their insecurities and fears.
If the love you feel for your partner is, well, not as strong as you think it is, you can easily become judgmental and start criticizing them for every mistake or bad decision they make.
Fortunately, this stage is temporary. That’s the reason why when it is finished, many couples decide to end their relationship and only a few couples move to the fourth, final phase.
4. True love.
This is the stage when both partners gain stability and control over their emotions. Couples that have managed to stay together during the previous three stages finally know and accept each other for who they truly are. They appreciate the qualities of their partner but they also embrace each other’s flaws.
During this stage, the connection between partners gets deeper and stronger as they show mutual trust and respect and take care of the relationship.
If you’ve already reached the fourth stage of love, know that there are many ways to enhance it, and here are some of them:
Introspection is the ability to recognize your own thoughts, ideas, and feelings, and to see yourself objectively. If you possess this ability, it’ll help you realize both the things you’ve done right and your mistakes so that you can correct the latter and repeat the former.
If you want to enjoy a healthy, deep, happy relationship, both you and your partner need to have absolute trust in each other. In this way, your love will grow and you’ll be less afraid that your partner might lie to or cheat on you.
You can never strengthen the connection between you and your partner and keep the passion between you always alive if you don’t ensure that there’s always both physical and emotional intimacy in your relationship.