a man throwing a boomerang

The Relationship Boomerang: How Giving Comes Back to You

We've all been there—wishing for more affection, more touch, or simply to be seen and valued more by our partner. It's a common sentiment that many of us can relate to. But what if the secret to receiving these things lies in giving them first? Seem simple? It is! But it's also incredibly easy to get caught up in seeing all the things we're not getting, rather than what we're not GIVING. This simple yet transformative idea can be a game-changer in any relationship, and in this blog post, we'll explore why.

The Cycle of Wanting

It's a familiar pattern: we yearn for something from our partner, whether it's more attention, more affection, or more understanding. When we don't get it, disappointment sets in, often leading to resentment or emotional distance. The irony is that our partners may be going through the same cycle, leading to a stalemate where both parties are wanting but neither is giving. Flipping this script can be liberating. Instead of waiting for your partner to make the first move, why not take the initiative? You might find that giving freely can create an atmosphere where both partners feel more comfortable reciprocating.

It might be a silly example, but it reminds me of this story my mom told me years ago about her relationship with my stepdad. She was always so frustrated that he never took an interest in anything she liked to do. And then one day, like a smack to the head, she realized that she also didn’t take an interest in one of his favorite pastimes: watching basketball. As an experiment, she began watching in earnest, learning the names of the players and low and behold, found herself enjoying watching and becoming an avid fan. Not only that, her experiment worked! All of a sudden he started to say “yes” to her - to yoga classes even, much to her surprise.

The Importance of Touch

Touch is a fundamental human need. It's one of the first senses we develop and remains a crucial part of our emotional and physical well-being throughout our lives. Yet, as adults, especially in romantic relationships, the significance of NON-SEXUAL touch often gets overlooked. Yes, I put that in caps! If you crave more physical connection, take the lead. But make this no-strings-attached non-sexual touch. If your only desire is to have more sexual intimacy, but you’re not willing to put in the work around ALL the other forms of intimacy, this isn’t going to work, so make sure your intentions are genuine here.
An important part of giving is to let go of expectations around what you will in turn receive. Read that sentence one more time. Aim for authentic connection with your partner and they will feel your heart. A spontaneous hug, a gentle caress, or even a playful nudge can go a long way in breaking down emotional barriers. When you initiate touch, you're not just fulfilling your own needs; you're also creating a space where your partner may feel more comfortable doing the same. But make it a safe, no pressure space.

Being Seen and Valued

In the hustle and bustle of daily life, it's easy to feel like you're just going through the motions, even with the person you love the most. Feeling seen goes beyond mere acknowledgment; it's about being understood, appreciated, and valued for who you are, quirks and all. If you want to feel more seen in your relationship, start by witnessing your partner. Listen actively when they talk. Validate their feelings without judgment. Show genuine interest in their day, their dreams, and their fears. By creating a space where your partner feels seen, you're more likely to create an environment where you both feel valued and understood.

Finding Your "Yes"

Here at Lit, we talk about “finding your yes” a lot (and when we’re feeling cheeky, it’s your f*ck yes). The concept of finding your "Yes" is about aligning with what you most deeply desire—in your relationship, in love, and in life. When you give what you wish to receive, you're essentially saying "Yes" to your partner and to the relationship as a whole. It is easier to want the other person to go first, to find their “yes” first, but what if we put our ego aside and just show up as who we are or even better, who we want to be. It’s the Golden Rule, and probably one of the first rules our parents taught us when we were little. And yet sometimes it’s the hardest to put into practice.
This mutual "Yes" can be the foundation for a deeper, more fulfilling connection. It's a commitment to the well-being of not just one partner, but the relationship itself. And in that commitment lies the potential for endless growth and happiness.
The idea of giving what you wish to receive is simple but incredibly powerful. It flips the script on the cycle of wanting and disappointment, turning it into a cycle of giving and fulfillment. By practicing this principle, you not only enrich your own experience but also contribute to a deeper, more meaningful connection in your relationship.
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