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How to keep the passion alive

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In the romantic comedy, “Hope Springs, Tommy Lee Jones and Meryl Streep play a couple seeking to spark passion in a stale relationship. Steve Carell stars as the couples’ therapist.

While this movie portrays a middle-aged marriage, every relationship goes through stages that challenge romance. While the sexes differ in what romance means, the key is in knowing your partner.

If you want to bring more romance to your love relationship, do your homework. Observe your partner, experiment, ask leading questions.

Here are five simple things men can do to romance the woman they love, followed by five things women can do to romance the man they love. Try a few and see where they lead.

How to Romance the Woman You Love
1. Tell her how wonderful her clean hair smells.
2. Give her a long massage, and don’t expect anything in return.
3. Call her mid-morning and ask her on a lunch date. Don’t pout if she can’t go. Instead, be open to setting a date for the future.
4. Leave a love note where she’ll find it—on her pillow, on the dashboard of her car, in the refrigerator—wherever she’s sure to look. It could be as simple as “Dave loves Paula,” or perhaps an invitation to a special event or trip or hike in the park. Whatever SHE likes to do.
5. On a Saturday morning, tell her you are available for the day to do chores, including babysitting.

How to Romance the Man You Love
1. Give him a compliment he hasn’t heard before. Something about his brains or brawn.
2. Wear something he gave you (jewelry, clothing, perfume) and let him know how much you enjoy it.
3. Spend an evening focused on him. Don’t mention any of your problems or concerns. Let him talk if he wishes. If he doesn’t start a conversation, give him lots of time and space, then let him know how you appreciate him.
4. Create a special evening at home. Cook his favorite meal. If you’re not a chef, get the makings at your local deli. Or if you can afford it, hire a caterer. Send the children to your neighbors for the night. Let him know in advance and be open to rescheduling to accommodate his schedule.
5. Invite him to a game of strip poker, just the two of you.

Most importantly, have fun!