‘I love you’ is a very powerful phrase – when it’s accompanied by matching actions, that is.
Remember, that phrase gets thrown around carelessly all the time. I’ve done it, you’ve probably done it. It’s a rite of passage, almost. But hey, let’s put that behind us. We’re adults and it’s time to do things the right way.
Here are 3 ways to express love that go beyond the simple uttering of a cliché!
#1 – Support Your Partner
We all support people we’ve never met. Just think about how much time and energy you devote to your favorite sports team or band. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with that – just don’t forget to support the people in your life too.
A large part of this, according to psychotherapist Linda Chapman, is responding to your partner’s needs without being asked to.
“That person who just brings home a bottle of wine? They’ve got it,” says Chapman. “That person who, as there partner is lying there, exhausted, just starts to give them a foot rub or massage? They’ve got it.”
Not sure exactly what your partner wants? Well, just ask. The important thing is that you show initiative. That will show your partner you love them enough to have their needs resting on your mind.
#2 – Break The Touch Barrier Regularly
According to psychology expert Blake Eastman, between 60% and 90% of all communication is non-verbal. Touch, as we discussed in this article, makes up a very large chunk of that vital non-verbal contact.
This touch does not need to be sexual. In fact, according to Dr. Madeleine Castellanos, non-sexual touching habits are exactly what couples need to establish.
“If you don’t have a good amount of non-sexual touching with your partner, then every physical contact is expected to be sexual,” says Dr. Castellanos. “This creates an atmosphere of tension, coldness and isolation.”
I don’t know about you but I’m not getting a very strong ‘love’ vibe from the words ‘tension, coldness and isolation.’
To bring love and calmness into the picture, you should focus on actions like gentle arm/hand touching. In women, this will actually release oxytocin. When things do get sexual, that oxytocin will produce – in Dr. Castellanos’ words – a “dramatic sexual experience for her.”
#3 – Spend Time With Your Partner
Texting and Facebook messaging only go so far. Eventually, you need to put the phones away and actually spend time with your partner face to face. Give them your undivided attention for as long as they need it.
This, according to the aptly-titled SaveMarriage.co.uk, “sends the message that your spouse is important to you, that your relationship is a priority and that his or her thoughts are worthy of your time and respect.”