The longer you are in a relationship, the more you should theoretically be close to your partner and the more steps you should take towards a common future. Of course, there are no rigid norms anywhere that say that after 2 years you have to live together and after 17 years you have to get married. A lot depends on your situation, your values and plans for the future - a lot also depends on your age because the relationships develop differently when the partners are 20 years old than when they are after 30. However, if you feel that your relationship hasn't been developing for a long time despite the fact that you would like it very much and there are no prospects for you to move forward soon, it will definitely be worth doing something about it.
To start with, it is helpful to look at what is happening from the perspective of your partner. If s/he doesn't want to go any further, it probably means that they are not emotionally involved enough in your relationship - and it's not their fault. If only he could, he would fall in love with you with pleasure - he would enjoy your meetings much more and develop your relationship happily - the problem is that he cannot because he has very limited power over what he feels. And if he hasn't been feeling anything for a long time, he can be simply tired and frustrated.
Many people, who have been with each other for a long time more out of habit rather than out of happiness, fall into such a trap. The relationship hasn't fallen apart yet because after all, there is no catastrophe, there's not so much arguing, and there's no time or chance to meet someone else. So the relationship continues as it is. But it's not good either, and the thought of spending the rest of your life with this person is not satisfying, hence the following words spring to mind: "I don't think that I am ready to move now".
I say this a little bit jokingly, but in the long run, the situation may be very serious because a relationship that is not developing sooner or later breaks up. It is very easy in such a situation to start showing your demands towards your partner. For example: "we've been together for so many years, and everyone around us is getting married and has children, while we're not even engaged. You don't love me!” If you tried such an approach, you probably already know that not only does it not work, but it even worsens the situation.
Continuously returning to the subject of planning a common future, insisting on a wedding or children, can be overwhelming for the other side in the long run and thus break the balance of engagement between you. If you feel that you are obviously trying harder in your relationship, this is the first thing to change. So paradoxically, the key to moving one step forward can be to take a step backwards and give more space to your partner. I have already talked extensively about how to restore the balance of involvement in the relationship in my course: "How to build and repair a relationship" - click here
Only when you are confident that the balance in your relationship is at the right level you can focus on raising its quality to the highest level. Make sure you have a friendly relationship with your partner and work hard on effective communication, especially if you have regular quarrels.
But if you've been stagnating for a long time and the situation is very bad, you may need to use the most powerful weapon in your entire arsenal, even if it's kind of risky.
I observe the power of this weapon especially when I have consultations with people who were once in your partner's position. They used to be the ones who put much less effort and neglected their partner, sometimes even for years, until finally something happened that suddenly they pay for consultations with me and they want to fight for getting back their ex partner.
This thing is usually a breakup. This is definitely one of the strongest stimuli that can awaken the feelings of your partner, because he or she suddenly can feel that at some point in their life, they can lose you forever.
This is much less risky than it might seem at first glance if you do it in a calm and thoughtful way, without trying any threats or blackmail and preparing your partner for it beforehand - and what is also important, you can't let your ex get back to you too easily.
Nevertheless, I advise you to use this strategy as a last resort, because you have to take into account that after such a breakup you can really part forever if your partner is so withdrawn that he will not fight to get you back. But most of the time, even if it doesn't work out, it's better than being stuck in a relationship with no prospects, which sooner or later will break up anyway.