A primer for how to become more romantic

heartIn “What’s your definition of romance?” we talked about specific activities that most women consider romantic. However, I’ve been thinking more about what comprises romance. Then I got this question from a male reader in response to the posting “The Valentine’s angst is upon us“:

I have some angst about Valentine’s Day. It is a form of performance anxiety. I confess that I never prepare sufficiently, and it is always in the final hours that I find myself attempting to justify not having done anything creative or romantic. But at the last minute I am in the realization that something must be done. And so something is, but rarely is it a detailed and well-executed plan, more like heartfelt appreciation expressed with sincerity but insufficient investment to establish deep proof. And so there is anxiety about my performance. Will it pass cupid’s muster?

What is the practical way to become more romantic?

My response:

What a great question!

Romance is all about showing someone you’ve put some thought and effort into something you think would make her happy. So while your last-minute efforts show her you care, for the next event start thinking about it a month or so in advance. Put it on your calendar to just notice her and what she likes.

Take note if she says she likes a certain flower, smell, movie, food, book, color, etc. Or listen as she tells you about a friend’s vacation or gift and says something like, “That sounds so wonderful.”

Romance is about noticing, then doing something to give her what you think she’d like. If she adores Italian food but a trip to Assisi isn’t in the near future, how about giving her a big basket with favorite Italian food that you cook for her? Or a trip to a favorite, but not often frequented, Italian restaurant? It really doesn’t have to be a big deal — the big deal is that you paid attention and made some true effort to please her.

He responded:

Yes, somehow I knew that more preparation would be the answer. In fact the prize usually goes to the one with the most preparation, especially when preparation is the primary evidence of consideration. I think many relationships wither because of one or the other being “inconsiderate.” Just considering the other’s wishes and pleasures is a great start toward mutual appreciation.

What do you think is the foundation of romance?

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