VisitEngland has teamed up with relationship coach Sarah Abell to recommend some great romantic getaways designed to help get your love lives back on track.
Sarah is the author of Inside Out - How to Have Authentic Relationships with Everyone in Your Life, former Agony Aunt for the Daily Telegraph and regular love columnist for Psychologies magazine.
In her fourth and final column, Sarah suggests an exploratory romantic break in in the North East's twin cities of NewcastleGateshead to help new couples test their compatibility.
I have recently started dating someone. She seems lovely so far but I am really paranoid about turning into one of those couples that go out to dinner and don’t have anything to say to each other. How do I know if she is right for me and how do I make sure that we don’t turn into one of those boring couples?
I have absolutely no idea whether in twenty years time you and your girlfriend will be boring the pants off each other or hanging on each other’s words. But if you are up for a challenge I think we might be able to find out. I’m going to recommend that you try my three tips for a successful relationship during a romantic weekend break to NewcastleGateshead. By the end of the experience you should have a better idea of whether this relationship is on or off track.
My first tip is to cultivate curiosity. Whether it is the early stages of a relationship or fifty years in – it helps to be curious. What makes your loved one tick? What do they enjoy doing? What are their values?
Start by giving your girlfriend a choice of accommodation in NewcastleGateshead. Would she prefer a) the city boutique hotel Malmaison b) a cosy night in the West Wood Yurts or c) the Jesmond Dene country house hotel?
Getting to know someone’s preferences helps you evaluate your compatibility. You won’t necessarily want to be with someone who is the same as you but it helps to think about how you’ll navigate any differences if and when they arise.
My second tip is to cultivate playfulness. Having shared interests and a sense of fun can go a long way in a relationship. Why not create a list of five things to do in NewcastleGateshead and then each of you pick one to try together? For example you might put: go for an evening walk by the Quayside, leave a lovelock on the High Level Bridge, see a film at the restored art deco Tyneside Cinema, or go watch a match at St James’ Park.
My third and final tip is to cultivate kindness. Kindness is a great quality to have in a relationship and going away together can be a good test of whether you both have it. What happens when one of you is tired or doesn’t fancy doing what the other wants? Pick the restaurant that suits you best. Will it be a) The Monastery – apparently the oldest restaurant in England, b) Hanahana for Japanese Teppan-yaki, or c) Dabbawal for spiced curries? Keep an eye out for how your girlfriend treats the waiting staff and also how she reacts if she doesn’t like your choice. Often the clues to how kind someone is are in the small stuff!
After a few days away trying these tips, you will hopefully have more of an idea as to whether this relationship has the potential to go the distance. Good luck!
Need some more K.I.S.S.I.N.G. in your life? Plan your own romantic getaway at VisitEngland.com/moreromance
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