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I’m Not Going To Say “I Love You” To My Partner Even If I Really Do

I’m Not Going To Say “I Love You” To My Partner Even If I Really Do

How do you get to the point of I’m not going to say “I love you” to my partner even if I really do? When saying “I love you,” it is so easy when starting your life with someone. You show them you’re into them; because you are. As time moves on and you figure out you want to spend your life with that person, it’s easy to fall into the rut of “I love you, have a good day.” Or “I’ll see you after work, love you.”

Don't say, "I love you", show me.
    photo credit: thehdimg.com

    My husband and I have been married for eight years.

    Over the last year we have tried to move away from just saying, “I love you.” Sure we still say those three beautiful words, but we have learned how to say them without actually having them come out of our mouths. Here are a few of these ways.

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    1. We take time to listen to each other.

    When we do things like this for each other it says, “I value what you have to say.” My husband has gotten to the point of when I am trying to talk to him and he is around other people, he says, “Can you please give me a moment, it’s important that I hear this.” Nothing in the material world screams, “I love you!” like this action does. Just the fact he stops and takes a breath for me gives him brownie points.

    2. Following through with my word.

    When it comes to my husband if I tell him I will do my best to do something, I jump through hoops to try and do it. Why? Because the smile on his face drives my day. I want him to know that it does.

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    3. Showing each other intimacy.

    It doesn’t mean that you just go and jump into bed with your partner. Intimacy comes with two sides, sexual and non-sexual. Most people love the bedroom scene. We actually went through a period where I couldn’t stand being naked around him. Realizing this was an important part for him (and at one time myself also), I went for help. Doing this one action showed him, “I love you, you’re important to me, and so are your needs” it was very beneficial.

    4. Surprises.

    Going back to when you’re dating, it’s easy to send your girlfriend flowers, or make cookies for your boyfriend. My husband isn’t really into sweets, so using the first example and listening for things that he would like is how I surprise him. He knows when I say, “Wow, how cool?!” he just screamed, “I love you” without having to say a word. I know when he tells me, “You really didn’t have to do this” but there’s a smile on his face when he says it; I just told him that he means the world to me.

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    5. We take time to notice each other.

    What does it even mean? One way we say we love each other is to actually look at each other, yes I said it. We put down the electronics and we look at each other. It usually follows with a compliment like, “Wow, honey I really like your haircut!” or “You look beautiful without any make-up on.” I know that this is a corny way to say, “I love you” but honestly; do you take the time to put your electronics and appreciate your partner? For me and my husband, this was a huge barrier in our intimacy. There were times where T.V or video games were more important than each other’s happiness. We had started to notice each other were unhappy until it was almost too late. But just taking the time to realize this was one of our barriers meant more than saying these words, “I love you”.

    6. We take time to be silly with each other.

    I’ve had friends ask me, “Why do you have that manner?” Answering this was simple, one great way that I show my spouse is saying, “Come play with me.” or “Let’s have some fun together.” When we did this for the first time we were walking through a craft store. There were these awesome pool tube swords. My husband, Nicholas kept walking by them. How do you not seize the opportunity to safely beat the crap out of each other and laugh like kids? I bought four of them, a different color for each family member and we laughed for hours over this activity. Through this action we learned how to say, “I love you,” through laughter; making our lives richer.

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    This article by another Lifehack author helped me realize we were heading for success: Lori De La Cruz and it was called, Numerous Messages Behind “I Love You”

    It is my hope, one day the end result will be a heart warming old folks photo like this one

    Growing Old
      photo credit : www.tumblr.com

      Featured photo credit: MoshLab Wallpaper via moshlab.com

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      Last Updated on February 21, 2019

      The Secret to Effective Conflict Resolution: The IBR Approach

      The Secret to Effective Conflict Resolution: The IBR Approach

      In business, in social relationships, in family… In whatever context conflict is always inevitable, especially when you are in the leader role. This role equals “make decisions for the best of majority” and the remaining are not amused. Conflicts arise.

      Conflicts arise when we want to push for a better quality work but some members want to take a break from work.

      Conflicts arise when we as citizens want more recreational facilities but the Government has to balance the needs to maintain tourism growth.

      Conflicts are literally everywhere.

      Avoiding Conflicts a No-No and Resolving Conflicts a Win-Win

      Avoiding conflicts seem to be a viable option for us. The cruel fact is, it isn’t. Conflicts won’t walk away by themselves. They will, instead, escalate and haunt you back even more when we finally realize that’s no way we can let it be.

      Moreover, avoiding conflicts will eventually intensify the misunderstanding among the involved parties. And the misunderstanding severely hinders open communication which later on the parties tend to keep things secret. This is obviously detrimental to teamwork.

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      Some may view conflicts as the last step before arguments. And they thus leave it aside as if they never happen. This is not true.

      Conflicts are the intersect point between different individuals with different opinions. And this does not necessarily lead to argument.

      Instead, proper handling of conflicts can actually result in a win-win situation – both parties are pleased and allies are gained. A better understanding between each other and future conflicts are less likely to happen.

      The IBR Approach to Resolve Conflicts

      Here, we introduce to you an effective approach to resolve conflicts – the Interest-Based Relational (IBR) approach. The IBR approach was developed by Roger Fisher and William Ury in their 1981 book Getting to Yes. It stresses the importance of the separation between people and their emotions from the problem. Another focus of the approach is to build mutual understanding and respect as they strengthen bonds among parties and can ultimately help resolve conflicts in a harmonious way. The approach suggests a 6-step procedure for conflict resolution:

      Step 1: Prioritize Good Relationships

      How? Before addressing the problem or even starting the discussion, make it clear the conflict can result in a mutual trouble and through subsequent respectful negotiation the conflict can be resolved peacefully. And that brings the best outcome to the whole team by working together.

      Why? It is easy to overlook own cause of the conflict and point the finger to the members with different opinions. With such a mindset, it is likely to blame rather than to listen to the others and fail to acknowledge the problem completely. Such a discussion manner will undermine the good relationships among the members and aggravate the problem.

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      Example: Before discussion, stress that the problem is never one’s complete fault. Everyone is responsible for it. Then, it is important to point out our own involvement in the problem and state clearly we are here to listen to everyone’s opinions rather than accusing others.

      Step 2: People Are NOT the Cause of Problem

      How? State clearly the problem is never one-sided. Collaborative effort is needed. More importantly, note the problem should not be taken personally. We are not making accusations on persons but addressing the problem itself.

      Why? Once things taken personally, everything will go out of control. People will become irrational and neglect others’ opinions. We are then unable to address the problem properly because we cannot grasp a fuller and clearer picture of the problem due to presumption.

      Example: In spite of the confronting opinions, we have to emphasize that the problem is not a result of the persons but probably the different perspectives to view it. So, if we try to look at the problem from the other’s perspective, we may understand why there are varied opinions.

      Step 3: Listen From ALL Stances

      How? Do NOT blame others. It is of utmost importance. Ask for everyone’s opinions. It is important to let everyone feel that they contribute to the discussion. Tell them their involvement is essential to solve the problem and their effort is very much appreciated.

      Why? None wants to be ignored. If one feels neglected, it is very likely for he/she to be aggressive. It is definitely not what we hope to see in a discussion. Acknowledging and being acknowledged are equally important. So, make sure everyone has equal opportunity to express their views. Also, realizing their opinions are not neglected, they will be more receptive to other opinions.

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      Example: A little trick can played here: Invite others to talk first. It is an easy way to let others feel involved and ,more importantly, know their voices are heard. Also, we can show that we are actively listening to them by giving direct eye-contact and nodding. One important to note is that never interrupt anyone. Always let them finish first beforeanother one begins.

      Step 4: Listen Comes First, Talk Follows

      How? Ensure everyone has listened to one another points of view. It can be done by taking turn to speak and leaving the discussion part at last. State once again the problem is nothing personal and no accusation should be made.

      Why? By turn-taking, everyone can finish talking and voices of all sides can be heard indiscriminantly. This can promote willingness to listen to opposing opinions.

      Example: We can prepare pieces of paper with different numbers written on them. Then, ask different members to pick one and talk according to the sequence of the number. After everyone’s finished, advise everyone to use “I” more than “You” in the discussion period to avoid others thinking that it is an accusation.

      Step 5: Understand the Facts, Then Address the Problem

      How? List out ALL the facts first. Ask everyone to tell what they know about the problems.

      Why? Sometimes your facts are unknown to the others while they may know something we don’t. Missing out on these facts could possibly lead to inaccurate capture of the problem. Also, different known facts can lead to different perception of the matter. It also helps everyone better understand the problem and can eventually help reach a solution.

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      Example: While everyone is expressing their own views, ask them to write down everything they know that is true to the problem. As soon as everyone has finished, all facts can be noted and everyone’s understanding of the problem is raised.

      Step 6: Solve the Problem Together

      How? Knowing what everyone’s thinking, it is now time to resolve the conflict. Up to this point, everyone should have understood the problem better. So, it is everyone’s time to suggest some solutions. It is important not to have one giving all the solutions.

      Why? Having everyone suggesting their solutions is important as they will not feel excluded and their opinions are considered. Besides, it may also generate more solutions that can better resolve the conflicts. Everyone will more likely be satisfied with the result.

      Example: After discussion, ask all members to suggest any possible solutions and stress that all solutions are welcomed. State clearly that we are looking for the best outcomes for everyone’s sake rather than battling to win over one another. Then, evaluate all the solutions and pick the one that is in favor of everyone.

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