Can a Honeymoon Last Forever?
Remember what it felt like when you and your partner went on your honeymoon? The excitement and the sense of joy and connection? Remember wanting this feeling to last forever? That’s what a lifelong honeymoon is.
A lifelong honeymoon is the experience of continual fulfillment and connection created by doing the things every day that lets you and your partner know that you are affirmed, appreciated, and loved.
It is all about living and relating with your partner in a way that continually recreates, reinforces, and restimulates those cherished emotions over and over again, every day, every week, every month. It is living and connecting in a way that breeds sustainable emotional safety and security.
From thousands of hours working with couples in varying levels of crisis, I have developed the Porsha Principles. Webster’s defines a principle as a comprehensive and fundamental law, doctrine, or assumption. When I apply this definition to my work, I define the Porsha Principles as fundamental truths that serve as the foundation for successful relationships. These principles include key strategies that couples can use to create and sustain their lifelong honeymoon.
The eight Porsha Principles will guide you and your partner to having the kind of lifelong experiences that lead to hyper-fulfillment and highly sustained enjoyment of one another. The principles do three powerful things.
The principles provide proactive strategies that help you and your partner learn to contribute to the love pool.
They raise your awareness of behaviors that drain the love pool.
They provide intervention strategies for times when repair to the pool is needed.
Let me give you a very quick overview of the eight principles.
Principle 1: Let Them Know You … Not Your Representative.
You know how when you first meet someone, and they don’t necessarily show you their real self?
This can happen for many reasons. We all like to think that it’s an attempt to put our best foot forward, to be liked or accepted. But often it’s an attempt to hide our true self, our feelings, or even our current life situation.
This inauthentic representative of one’s self can show up regardless of whether you are in a short-term or long-term relationship.
In this principle we talk about why this happens, how to spot the representative, and how to peel back the layers—both yours and your partner’s—to reveal your authentic self.
Principle 2: Cultivate Intimacy … at Deeper Levels.
What do you think of when you think of intimacy?
Some people think of intimacy as spending time together. For others, intimacy is about communicating and sharing each other’s deepest feelings. For others, intimacy is all about the sexual relationship.
Within this principle, we discuss what intimacy really is, and the importance of cultivating it at deeper levels.
Principle 3: Lift Your Partner … Every Day.
Do you remember the first few months with your partner? The excitement you experienced, the way you felt every time you were with them, the way you spoke to them, the things you did for each other? It was so uplifting, wasn’t it?
Then: life happens. Whether it’s the work you do or the roles you play, other things may have gradually taken priority over lifting your partner up.
If you want a lifelong honeymoon, this has to change. You can’t let the urgency of life push aside the importance of creating magical moments every day with your partner.
Principle 4: Manage the Differences … with Care and Communication.
This is the first of four principles where our focus is on preventing the negative things that break down otherwise strong relationships.
While the statement “opposites attract” is often true when it comes to initial attraction, over time it’s typically those same opposites that can create conflict and stress in relationships.
From my work with hundreds of couples, I have found that there are three major differences that can cause significant challenges for couples: communication styles, love languages, and personality traits.
In this principle we provide specific strategies for dealing with these differences.
Principle 5: Avoid the Fire Starters … They Can Ignite a Blaze.
If you were creating a bonfire, you would want to have the right kindling to get the fire started. Unfortunately, emotional fire starters are just that, the kindling that can lead to burning down your relationship house!
We can think of these behaviors as ways people often express their real, valid thoughts and feelings about themselves and their partner, but in such negative ways that it can be destructive.
In this principle we identify specific behaviors (such as criticizing, blaming, shaming) that can be the start of serious breakdowns. If you want a lifelong honeymoon, you need to be diligent about avoiding these emotional fire starters.
Principle 6: Address Conflict … Resolve Disagreements.
Many of us grew up in families that didn’t teach how to address conflict in a healthy way. As a result, many couples are poorly equipped to handle disagreement and so respond with either fight (arguments that can cause significant attachment injuries), flight (avoiding the disagreement completely until it becomes an overwhelming crisis), or freeze (a reflex that renders one unresponsive or unable to move.
Surprisingly, there are only three reasons people disagree. And fortunately, there are specific strategies that can be applied for addressing each.
In this principle, we help you understand disagreements and give you the pathways to cleanly resolve them.
Principle 7: Repair the Ruptures … They Can Ruin You.
While managing the differences and avoiding the fire starters are proactive ways to create your lifelong honeymoon, inevitably ruptures or hurts will occur in the relationship. How you respond to them will make all the difference in sustaining your lifelong honeymoon.
Some ruptures will be scrapes or abrasions that occur as a result of two people who are different, and those differences rubbing against each other at no fault of either partner.
Other ruptures will be bruises; they hurt a little more and are a direct result of one partner’s action that causes a minor to moderate injury to the other.
And still others are deep cuts; like bruises, deep cuts occur when one of the partners is at fault and harm is caused to the other partner. However, the wound is deep and potentially fatal to the relationship.
Regardless of the type of rupture, care must be taken to repair them. In this principle we talk about the types of ruptures and how to repair each of them.
Principle 8: Profess, Protect, and Prioritize Your Relationship … with Your Thoughts, Words, and Actions..
You can think of this final principle as being all about preventive maintenance: the things you are going to do and not do on an ongoing basis to keep your lifelong honeymoon going!
Imagine your partner in a room filled with people they find highly attractive. What would you want your partner to do to protect your relationship?
What would you want your partner to profess about your relationship when talking to others?
And finally, what are the things you would want you and your partner to be doing on a regular basis to ensure that you are both prioritizing the relationship?
Your preventive maintenance steps are a vital key to living your lifelong honeymoon.
Understanding the Wheel
I want to point out several aspects of the wheel.
Each of the eight principles is vital to creating and sustaining a lifelong honeymoon. The wheel is intended to indicate that there is NOT a rank or order of importance. I use the numbers 1–8 purely for ease in discussion.
The colors have meaning and purpose. The first three principles are red because many couples experience these principles as the rosy, loving, fun stuff.
Principles 5, 6, and 7 are dark gray, implying that many couples experience fire starters, conflicts, and ruptures as the more challenging times in a relationship.
Principles 4 (Manage the differences) and 8 (Profess, protect, and prioritize) are white and help keep the peace by helping you to stay in the red zone and have more of those loving and positive experiences.