Who doesn’t want to hear the words “I love you?”
But do the spoken words mean the same to both partners? Relationship experts explain that the phrase is often perfunctory and other words can better convey how you feel about someone.
So here are five statements you can make to let your partner know you are appreciative of them and that you are paying attention.
1. “Thank you.”
Two words that aren’t used enough. Gratitude is something that we all need and seek from people. If we do something nice for our partner, we naturally want to be thanked. By thanking them, we demonstrate that we recognize our partner’s contributions and value what they bring to the table. It’s also positive reinforcement–if they know they’ve done well, they’re more likely to repeat the good behavior in the future. If they don’t know you care, they may not.
2. “I appreciate everything you do.”
Yes, this is expanding on “thank you,” but consider it a polite acknowledgment to add to your repertoire of sincere compliments.
It’s another way to tell your partner that you value them and the contributions they make to our lives. Affirmations are fuel for a happy relationship. They keep us going when it doesn’t feel like the rest of the world appreciates us. They strengthen the bonds of the relationship and lead to an even greater desire for intimacy and closeness.
3. “I’m here for you.”
Feeling like you’re alone during a crisis is one of the worst things you can feel. Everyone needs reassurance, especially during the tough times that every relationship eventually faces.
When a partner screws up, this reassurance can go a long way to help them correct their mistakes in the future. It also helps them know that your feelings haven’t changed, and they still have your love and support.
4. “I love you the way you are.”
For your relationship to move to the next level, you need to start expressing an unconditional love for your partner. If you offer that unconditional love, then you’re strengthening your intimate relationship. Without that, we’re just one screw up away from our partners seeing us in a negative light, losing respect for us, and looking for an escape route.
5. “I care about your feelings and value your opinions.”
For any relationship to be healthy, it’s important that people feel their partner takes them seriously and listens to their views.
We don’t always agree with our partners, but fully listening and accepting them is still essential when two people are struggling with an issue that they feel differently about. Considering your partner’s feelings and opinions is necessary for compromising and finding solutions that are agreeable to both parties.
Of course, words alone are meaningless. So listen to the words your partner says but make sure they are backed up by their actions and make sure they are consistent.
– C. Sky