Your love doesn’t have to cost much or look the way it does in the movies. You can use your words, your actions, your touch and gifts to make your partner feel loved in new and old ways. Everyone desires to be loved and your ability to love your partner well will make a huge positive impact on your relationship. Even if you are looking for a new thing to try or method to learn about, use your love for your partner to find ways to communicate that to them, get to know them better, and have a happier and healthier relationship
Growing in Love
Find out your partner’s “love language”. According to some, there are different “love languages” that people primarily use to express and receive love. These languages include: love expressed through words, love expressed through time spent together, love shown through gifts, love expressed in physical touch, and love done through acts of service. Typically a person will mainly feel loved through a couple of these love languages and not just one. One way to know what your main love language(s) are, is by thinking about how you show your love to others.
Knowing how you and your partner express love and feel loved can be really important to your relationship because partners can show love in very different ways.
For example, if you give gifts to show your love while your partner feels loved through time spent together, consider taking an evening to spend together to show them your love instead of buying them something nice.
You should ask your partner what makes them feel loved, or you can think about what they have said means a lot to them when it comes to feeling loved. Once you know what your partner likes, make a conscious effort to show your love in those ways.
Communicate with your partner the things that you need to feel loved.
Pay attention and listen to what your partner says they need or want. You should also notice little things that are going on with your partner. For example, if you notice your partner is cold, find a sweater for them. Or if your partner seems like they are getting sick, make them soup or buy them the medication they need. These small gestures can go a long way to show your partner you care.
If your partner says they don’t want something, don’t do it anyway. For example, if you buy your partner a hat they don’t need because you think that they do, they might become bitter about the present.
Write down what your partner says makes them feel loved and consult it when you are trying to decide what to do for him or her. Or ask your partner’s close friends about the things they like or need when in doubt.
Notice the ways your partner changes and grows. For example, if your partner has become more health conscious and changed his or her diet, don’t make them the food they liked before. Make or buy new food for your partner to show that you support their new lifestyle.
Carve out time for just the two of you.
Establish little routines that show your love. Go to bed at the same time, go on a walk together, kiss them before you leave the house, and send them a good morning or goodnight text if you are away from each other. To show your partner love, you should also find a time where you can put away all of your electronics, including your phones, and spend time with your focus on each other. Plan a special date or activity for you to do together. For some partners, quality time is how they feel the most loved.
Because it is time just for the two of you doesn’t mean that you have to be alone. You can go to a bowling alley, go to the beach or do something fun- just make sure that your main focus is your partner while you do your activity.
Give your partner space when they need it
and take space when you need it. Taking and giving space could seem like the opposite of showing love, but it can be key to loving your partner well. For some people, giving and taking space is hard to do. But if you talk about it before you take or give space- you can build a stronger relationship. Some examples of times you or your partner could use space include, after you have spent a lot of time really close together, if you have gone through something intense and emotional together, or if one of you is really stressed about something you have coming up that needs a lot of focus. This can mean going away for a couple of days, not talking as much, or texting less.
Explain to your partner why you think you two need space. For example, you can say something like, “I think I should go to my sister’s for the weekend because I want to give you space to do your project. What do you think about that?”
Taking space doesn’t mean that you are going to see other people. It simply means that you are giving each other distance so you can focus on something or let your partner focus on something he or she needs to do.
Communicating in Love
Appreciate your partner in the things they do, and compliment him or her. Tell your partner how attractive you find them. Tell them they are beautiful or handsome, and also tell them the little things you find sexy or cute about them. For example, if you are walking somewhere you have never been in a new city with your partner, and he or she finds the way to get to where you need to go without any problem, tell him or her, “I think your sense of direction is sexy.”
If your partner has done something for you- thank them for it. Write a little note of thanks for him or her and put it in their bag. Or you can send a text message that tells him or her how much you appreciate what they did with a picture of you looking silly and happy.
Show your love with your sense of humor.
Tease your partner and notice the little things that they do. Always laugh at your partner’s jokes or tease them for the joke, and encourage your partner when they are being silly. If your partner has painted her or his toenails, for example, you can ask something silly like, “Have your toenails always been that enchanting color?” The more you make humor a part of your relationship, the more comfortable and fun you can be together.
You can make funny observations to your partner based on where you are. Look around at the environment that you are in, and say something about it that is exaggerated, or point out something curious. For example, if your car is really cluttered and you are giving your partner a ride somewhere, you can ask, “So are you going to break up with me now because of my car?”
Listen to your partner talk about his or her troubles and joys.
Be your partner’s emotional support. Encourage your partner to tell you the things they care about and the things he or she is going through. You can ask your partner something like, “So how have you really been lately?”. When things are hard for your partner, remind them of the things that they have done well and all the ways things are going to be okay. Tell your partner that you are there for them.
Try to accept your partner for who they are including both the good and the bad. Realize their faults as well as their strengths, and love them for the whole thing.
Be prepared to forgive your partner for the mistakes they makes, and be ready to encourage them to keep trying. Also try to be forgiving because you are going to make mistakes, too.
Don’t try to change your partner.
If you are trying to change your partner, you won’t be able to fully love them because you will be worried about changing them. However, if there is self-destructive behavior, you should talk to a professional and get help.
Tell your partner you love them often.
Your partner needs to hear these reassuring words from you often. You can also vary “I love you” with, “I like you”. Tell your partner I like you or I love you when you see them do something that you enjoy or are proud of. Your partner will appreciate hearing they are loved for a variety things. Try to be unexpected with it sometimes, for example, when you are standing in line at a grocery store with your partner, you can whisper “I love you” in your partner’s ear before they go up to pay.
Send a random text that says I love you to your partner.
Be careful of saying I love you so often that it loses its power.
Ask your partner for feedback in your relationship
. One of the best ways to learn how to show someone love is to ask what is working for them. You can’t read your partner’s mind, and sometimes, the best way to show your partner love is to talk directly about how things are going. Whether it is in sex or in your relationship, you should check in with your partner every so often to ask them for feedback. Every couple of months, ask your partner to have a conversation about your relationship. Find a time and place you can have a real conversation. This can also happen on special dates when you are at dinner or having a drink. You can say something like, “I want to know how you are feeling about our relationship so we can make our relationship even better.”
Ask your partner something like, “What do you like about our relationship, and what can I do better to show my love for you?”.
Share your own feelings and feedback about the relationship with your partner. Tell your partner the good things that you have enjoyed in your relationship, and also tell them the things that they could do to make you feel even more loved.
Consider having these dates regularly if you are in a long term relationship.
Don’t shut your partner down in conversation.
Often in relationships, it is hard to stay patient with your partner because you spend a lot of time with them. Or when you are together, you are busy or stressed. However, don’t take your frustration out on them by shutting down things your partner says because you are feeling irritable or aren’t paying attention. For example, if your partner says to you directly something like, “I don’t know what I should get?” when you are ordering food, don’t ignore your partner because you are frustrated. It can be easy to snap and say something like, “You never know what to get.” or say nothing at all. Say something helpful like, “What did you get last time?”, or you can be playful and kiss them on the cheek to acknowledge them.
If you are genuinely busy, tell your partner that you would like to talk later. Explain that you can’t respond right now because you are doing something that needs your full attention. You can kiss your partner on the forehead and give them a genuine smile to let them know that you care.
Acting and Giving In Love
Imagine your partner has a love bank. You can add to this bank by telling them loving things or by doing loving things. You want to make your partner feel rich in love. There is no one way to make your partner feel loved- it takes persistent work and listening to them to make your partner feel really loved. However, being aware of this imaginary balance might help you remember that you need to do things to show them your love.
Do not hold the things you do for your partner over their head, and give to this account without expecting a return.
Check your motivations when you are doing things for your partner. Do things because you want to do them and not because you want something from your partner.
Get to know and be friendly with your partner’s friends and family. This act of love can mean a lot to your partner. When you see their family (or the important people in their life, ask your partner’s family questions about your partner, find common ground you share, and try to laugh with them. Even if your partner doesn’t have a great relationship with his or her family, you should still try to have a good relationship with them.
Whomever the important people are in your partner’s life, get to know those people.
Surprise your partner by giving or doing something unexpected for them. Doing something sweet for your partner doesn’t have to take very much effort on your end but will make your partner feel really loved and can do a lot for your relationship. For example, you can go out and get them their favorite tea or coffee in the morning unexpectedly, and buy a sweet treat they like to go with it.
Or you can put a sweet note for your partner in their purse or bag. Also, some partners really like it when they get something romantic even if it is cheesy. For example, a bouquet of his or her favorite flowers or a box of their favorite sweets will make their day.
You can get your partner something that benefits everyone.
For example, maybe your partner is really craving chips and salsa from a certain Mexican restaurant. Go to that restaurant and pick up chips and salsa and surprise your partner with them at lunch with the family.
Do work with and for your partner.
Schedule regular times in your schedule to devote to doing something for your partner. For example, on Sunday mornings, you might wash the dishes, make them a present, buy the groceries, or do any of the tasks that your partner normally does for or with your partner. Especially try to tackle projects that your partner doesn’t like to do like cleaning cobwebs or the bathroom for your partner.
Do side by side activities that your partner wants to do with you.
For example, if your partner likes to go to Bible study at your church, attend Bible study with them, and then go to a coffee shop after and talk about the study. Or if your partner likes board games, play one of their favorite games with them.
You can try doing couple day activities for each person in the relationship.
On one day, or for a period of time, one person in the relationship gets to pick all of the activities that the couple does for that day.
Give your partner gifts on holidays and important occasions.
For some partners, this is the way that they show love and the way that they feel loved. If you receive presents from your partner that you can tell they put lots of time and effort into, you may be with someone who cares about gifts. With that in mind, make sure that you also put time and effort giving them gifts back. Think about something that your partner is interested in or cares about and find a gift that they would like. For example, if she loves coffee, get your partner a special coffee maker and mug.
Be careful not to buy your partner that special coffee maker because you like coffee. If your partner notices that you benefit as much or more from the gift, they might not find the gift as nice.
Be physically affectionate with your partner. In studies, physical affection is highly connected to overall satisfaction in the relationship. In addition, conflict is more easily resolved when there is a good amount of physical affection between romantic partners.
There are different ways to be physically affectionate (not including sex) including massages and back rubs, holding and cuddling, kissing on the lips, kissing on the face, holding hands, and caressing and stroking
You should smile and make eye contact with your partner when you are physically affectionate.
Even for people who are not as obvious about their need for physical touch, physical affection is a key part of a healthy relationship. When it comes to sex, ask your partner the things that they likes, and work on making sex good for both of you.
Touch each other in passing.
If you don’t have a lot of time to spend together, make sure you make physical contact with your partner when you get a chance. Simply giving each other a good hug when you first see each other or when you leave can help make you feel more connected.
Spend time cuddling.
Plan to have a night where you spend time cuddling while you watch a movie or spend time together on the couch.
Some people in particular are very visual and will enjoy it when you do things to suggest doing other things with them. For example, you can bend down and tie your shoes while you make flirty eye contact with them.
Do sweet things like kiss your partner on the forehead.
This can give your partner the “I’m here-for-you” vibe Give them small kisses throughout the day, rub their neck and shoulders, and while you are standing or walking, casually put your arm over their shoulder, or around his or her waist.