If I’ve learned anything over the last decade of being in a committed relationship, it’s that love isn’t a feeling. Love is a choice.
Each day we wake up and we are presented with countless opportunities to show the people we care about some love. It is up to us whether we choose to do it or not.
Most people miss the signs, or even worse, they stop looking. So here’s a list of 42 proven strategies to choose from that show big love.
- You grab your partner first thing in the morning. You ignore your phone.
- You fill-up a glass of water and give it to them first before getting one for yourself.
- You don’t snap back. You sure as hell don’t yell.
- You play the music you listened to when you first met while making dinner on a Monday.
- You learn to love the sound of them scraping the last bit of yogurt out of their cup. You meditate. You smile.
- You pride yourself on your listening skills. You know when to shut up.
- You tell them they look good on a Tuesday. You mean it.
- You hold their hand in public. You make a point to do it sometimes also while making dinner at home.
- You stop. You think. You consider their position. You fight to not get them upset.
- You tell them when you’re scared. You let them hug you.
- When you’re with their family or friends you act like you give a damn. You show interest. You laugh.
- You listen to them when they had a bad day. You stay quiet. You keep your good news for another time.
- You give them a small gift on a Wednesday. Nothing crazy. Just something.
- You don’t start any drama in public and you sure as hell don’t ever speak poorly of them.
- You call them at work from time to time even if you don’t need anything. You want to hear their voice. You tell them you love them.
- You go for walks. You talk. But you don’t force it.
- You apologize when you mess up. You look them in the eye. You take the time to think about what you could have done differently.
- When they annoy you, you eat it. When they anger you, you talk.
- You reminisce. You laugh. You smile. You talk about your future together.
- You hug them at night. Always.
- You do more than you think you should at home. You don’t tell them what you did.
- You have a short memory. You forget stuff. You move on.
- You laugh out loud on some of their jokes. Not all the time. But sometimes.
- You support them in their career choices. You bet on them.
- You say thank you. You mean it. You tell them how lucky you are to have them in your life.
- You take the time to rediscover them. You notice.
- You ask for help, sometimes even if you don’t need it. You make it a point to work on stuff together.
- You sit in the sun from time to time. You talk. But not always.
- You let them stay in bed. You let them breathe. You give them space.
- You compliment them in the morning. You do what you can so they start the day off feeling good.
- You never write, “We need to talk,” on a text message. You talk about your problems or grievances in person. You wait until you are calm so you can communicate well.
- You don’t give them shit for making a mistake. You say you like burnt rice. You grin.
- You allow yourself to be cheesy from time to time. You dance. You allow yourself to be bad.
- You thank their parents for making you dinner. Once you get home, you call them and you say thank you again.
- You reserve time to think about what you can do for them. You want them to eat the last slice.
- You leave them a cup of water next to their side of the bed if you go to sleep before them. You never stop doing this.
- You leave them alone from time to time. You don’t try to cure them. You let them be human.
- You start and stick to your traditions. You go overboard from time to time. You surprise them. You spoil them.
- You create a light-weight habit that reinforces the fact that you are a team.
- You leave them little notes from time to time. You have inside jokes.
- You prioritize making time for each other. You get outside. You do things. You sneak kisses.
- You never stop taking note of the details that make them smile.
Strong relationships are kept together by people who choose to do the little things.
Observe the people you care about. Listen to them. Never stop seeing them.