Sometimes the words, “I love you” simply aren’t enough to convey just how deeply your love goes. In a case like this, you can show your special someone just how much they mean to you without ever saying a word. Trust me when I say that actions do speak louder than words.
What you do always means more than what you say
Professing your never-ending love with a barrage of “I love yous” is fine when you’re in high school and validating your love for one another on an hourly basis is life or death. Adult relationships are more intense, and validation more complicated, especially if you’re in it for the long haul.
It’s very easy to fall into the habit of just saying, “I love you.” But always doing so can lead to taking each other for granted. The following is a list of suggestions *yes, some of them are on the mushy side* you can use to show any special person in your life you love them without uttering a sound.
#1 Prepare a meal. Everyone knows food always tastes better when it’s prepared by someone you love. Furthermore, making a meal or a snack for someone special shows that you care enough to take the time to make sure they’re happy. Prepare an old family recipe, or simply stack some meat and cheese on a sandwich, and don’t forget to add the secret ingredient: LOVE. Your loved one will definitely appreciate the gesture. [Read: The most romantic songs to play during a dinner date]
#2 Pamper makes perfect. If you notice that your partner is tired or stressed after a hard day at work, or you know they are going through a rough time, pamper them by running them a bath or giving them a full-body massage. Light some candles and put on some soft music to help them relax further and recharge. To really show you care, do both. Climb in the tub with your partner and perform the massage. The added closeness to you helps relieve their stress and conveys just how much you care. [Read: How to give a sensual massage and work your magic]
#3 Write a note. It doesn’t have to be anything long or complicated, but leaving a note for your loved one lets them know you’re thinking of them throughout the day. For example, before you head out the door to start your day, write a quick note, even just a sentence or two, and leave it on your partner’s pillow. When they go to bed that night, they’ll know you were thinking of them that morning.
Alternately, if you travel, drop a post card in the mail with the words, “Thinking of you” to let your lover know they’re on your mind while you’re away. These tiny gestures score big points because writing anything by hand takes time and effort that’s just not taken much these days. [Read: 10 most important tips to write an amazing love letter]
#4 Ask how they are, and seem genuinely interested in what they have to say. If you know your significant other is worried about something, ask about it. Take an active interest in what they have to say and show genuine concern for their feelings. You may not have all the answers, but simply asking and listening shows you truly care about how they feel.
#5 Hang out with their friends. Even if you’d rather poke your eyes out with a stick, make an effort to get to know your lover’s friends. You don’t have to like them, but if you truly want to show how much you love your partner, don’t show it. Talk, ask questions, and try your best to get along with their crew. If you do, your love will notice and will adore you all the more. [Read: 15 rules to be a good partner in a relationship]
#6 Make time. You may be super busy, and your partner may even understand your busy schedule. This doesn’t mean you should put them off. Make time every day to call them and let them know you’re thinking about them. Or, get up early and spend a half hour together having coffee before heading out. On the weekends, when things aren’t so crazy, plan a romantic picnic just for the two of you.
#7 Don’t forget the hugs and kisses. Nothing says “I love you” better than giving someone hugs and kisses. The physical warmth of touch, together with eye contact, conveys everything you need to say without saying anything at all. [Read: 16 non-sexual touches to feel loved and connected]
#8 It’s the little things that count. Make your loved one’s life easier by doing little things. Take out the garbage without being asked. Pick up a gallon of milk on your way home because you’d noticed you’re almost out. Do something you know your partner hates doing. When you make your partner’s life easier, they realize just how much you care. [Read: The 25 sweetest romantic gestures for everyday life]
#9 Listen and learn. When you really listen to your partner, you learn a lot of things. For example, you might be in a grocery store when your lover tells you how much they used to love mint chocolate chip ice cream as a child. This little tidbit gives you something to surprise them with later. Show up with a pint of mint chocolate chip ice cream when you know they’re feeling down, and not only will they know you listen, but they’ll know you love them as well. [Read: 10 ways to be a better listener in your relationship]
#10 Let them be who they are. No one gets into a relationship to be changed. Everyone has their quirks and idiosyncrasies, and that’s what’s so special about being with someone. Rather than trying to make someone into the person you wish they were, let them be who they are and take advantage of all they have to teach you. Just because someone has a different outlook than you doesn’t mean they don’t have plenty to offer. Let your partner be themselves—weird, quirky, nerdy, and all—it’s the greatest show of love of them all.
[Read: 25 must-follow relationship rules for happy love]
When it comes to showing your love for someone, there are thousands of ways to get your point across. More often than not, though, just making the effort to go above and beyond a simple “I love you” is all you have to do to let someone know you love them.
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