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How To Tell Someone You Love Them Subtly Yet Sweetly (100 Ways Provided)

How To Tell Someone You Love Them Subtly Yet Sweetly (100 Ways Provided)

For all of their love, strength, and beauty, relationships can be fragile things and, much like a delicate plant, must be watered and fed if you want them to survive.

The biggest reason couples fall out of love is simple: they don’t feel loved by their partner. Why? Because even though they may say “I love you” at the end of phone calls and before heading off to work, those words have no magic if not backed by thousands of other simple gestures.

100 small things to make someone feel loved

  1. Don’t forget to hug before you say goodbye. Physical gestures often go undervalued after a relationship has been going on for a while.
  2. Tell them how special they are to you. This goes beyond just saying, “I love you”.
  3. Express understanding when it’s needed by saying, “I understand how you feel.” If you don’t understand, express your desire to by saying something like, “Tell me how you feel so that I can understand.”
  4. Tell them frequently how much you appreciate it when they do things for you. We often get used to how much our spouses or partners do for us and tend to forget how much easier they make our lives.
  5. Tell them how much you enjoy certain aspects of their personality. For example, “I love your sense of humor.” You need to be praised for who you are and so do they.
  6. Go an entire day with your partner without saying anything but positive praise. You can make this as frequent a practice as you like.
  7. Fix your partner their favorite food without them asking.
  8. Offer to help cook.
  9. If you have kids, offer to take them out so your partner can spend some relaxing time alone. Alone time is important!
  10. Send an intimate text message to your partner for no reason.
  11. Email your partner while they’re at work just to see how they’re doing.
  12. Call your partner when they’re on break just to say hi.
  13. Reach across the car, the table, or the couch to touch their hand, if only for a moment.
  14. Pull out their chair, or open the door for them- chivalry, guys!
  15. Remember to give them a smile. I don’t mean smile at them or fake it. I mean giving them their own personal smile- the one you save for them.
  16. Instead of taking your frustrations out on them after a hard day, say, “I really needed to see you today because … “, or, “I had a hard day and I need a hug.” They probably aren’t the cause of your bad mood, so let them help you out.
  17. Joke and laugh, and laugh with them.
  18. Go to bed at the same time for a week. Talk or read together, or just sit quietly.
  19. If you have children, compliment your partner or spouse in front of them. This will make your kids happy, too!
  20. Brag about your partner in public. Yes, they may turn beet red if they’re shy, but they’ll appreciate it.
  21. Try to avoid their pet peeves (e.g. sponge left in the sink or toilet seat left up). You may think they’re silly but it’s important to them.
  22. Light a candle or two when you have dinner together to make the atmosphere more romantic, just because.
  23. Find creative ways to tell each other “I love you” in code.
  24. Have date nights. Go out or stay in, but make the night about one another.
  25. Pick her some flowers.
  26. Offer to watch a movie with them that they like.
  27. Give them a massage after a long day, or for no reason at all.
  28. Tell them they’re your best friend.
  29. Don’t be shy about sharing your feelings. Let them know if you’re happy or unhappy at the moment, and why.
  30. Listen when they tell you how they’re feeling.
  31. Buy small “just because” presents outside of a holiday or birthday.
  32. Write intimate messages on a piece of paper and slip it into their bag for them to find.
  33. Hold hands in public.
  34. Take lessons together. It doesn’t matter what kind.
  35. Apologize when you make a mistake.
  36. Let them be right sometimes.
  37. Play games from your childhood together.
  38. Give your partner space when they need it. But let them know you’re there when they need you.
  39. Run a hot bath for your partner when they seem stressed.
  40. Wash your partner’s car for them.
  41. Put a cute little toy that reminds them of you in their glove compartment.
  42. Try to do one random act of kindness every day for your partner.
  43. Try new activities together. Challenging ones are the best.
  44. Take a day off work every once in a while to spend doing nothing together.
  45. Let your partner sleep in. Turn off their alarm.
  46. And bring them breakfast in bed.
  47. Remind your partner that they’re hot or sexy.
  48. Take bike rides or go for walks together.
  49. Wear matching outfits every so often.
  50. Keep your partner’s favorite snacks on hand at all times.
  51. Volunteer together.
  52. Do each other’s hair.
  53. Create goals as a couple. They can be about fitness, finance, personal-growth, etc.
  54. Take an unplanned vacation together.
  55. Plan a special day for your partner.
  56. Use a photo of them as the wallpaper on your phone, and show them that.
  57. Do a chore that he/she usually does.
  58. Keep a shared journal between the two of you.
  59. Accompany him to game night/football night and be “one of the guys”.
  60. Take time to get to know your partner’s friends.
  61. Let your partner have a guys/girls night out sometimes.
  62. Put on your partner’s favorite song or music and invite them to dance.
  63. Be silly sometimes. Make fun of yourselves. Don’t be too serious.
  64. Sing for your partner or play them something if you’re instrumentally inclined.
  65. Tell them, “I’m more in love with you than I was yesterday.”
  66. When you’re having a bad day, lighten the mood by saying, “I hate everything today– but you’re pretty cool, as always.”
  67. Tell them that you think they’re even more attractive than when you met them.
  68. Tell them you were thinking about them.
  69. Tell them you support them.
  70. Tell them you love their body and mind.
  71. Tell them what made you happy today, and how it reminded you of them.
  72. Ask them how their day was.
  73. Say good morning every day.
  74. Say goodnight every night.
  75. Make sure they know you’re their “number one”.
  76. Show your partner you respect them by listening to their opinions on important decisions, and actually act on them.
  77. Tell them you appreciate what’s good about their opinions, even when you disagree with them.
  78. Lovingly tease them. Call them names too sickeningly sweet for anyone else.
  79. Flirt! Everyone enjoys flirting.
  80. Ask them to choose your outfit for work.
  81. Go to the gym together.
  82. Write a poem or song for your partner, even if it’s goofy.
  83. Make your partner a sweet card for no reason at all.
  84. Recreate your first date, run-in, kiss, etc.
  85. If you’re crafty, make them something. It doesn’t have to be useful, but make sure it’s adorable and reminds them of you.
  86. Tell them you’re lucky to have them. Tell them how you’ve changed since you met them.
  87. Be truthful. Let them know about the naughty mistakes you’ve made.
  88. Be gentle about pointing out your partner’s flaws. They may need to hear it, but always softly.
  89. Show your partner how you trust them. Don’t feel the need to know their whereabouts if they don’t open up first.
  90. Buy your partner a gift certificate for their favorite store.
  91. Never blame your bad mood on your partner.
  92. Write them a story about your love.
  93. Make a picture collage of the two of you.
  94. Do something silly together.
  95. Invite their family to dinner (if they’re on good terms, that is).
  96. Make a playlist of your favorite songs as a couple and play it on a road trip.
  97. Rent some cheesy romance movies.
  98. Ask your partner to share their dreams with you.
  99. Laugh when they joke, even if the joke isn’t funny.
  100. Make it easy for them to love you. You’ll find that they’ll act in kind.

More by this author

Marina Richter

Freelance Writer

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Last Updated on January 15, 2021

7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

The popular idiomatic saying that “actions speak louder than words” has been around for centuries, but even to this day, most people struggle with at least one area of nonverbal communication. Consequently, many of us aspire to have more confident body language but don’t have the knowledge and tools necessary to change what are largely unconscious behaviors.

Given that others’ perceptions of our competence and confidence are predominantly influenced by what we do with our faces and bodies, it’s important to develop greater self-awareness and consciously practice better posture, stance, eye contact, facial expressions, hand movements, and other aspects of body language.

Posture

First things first: how is your posture? Let’s start with a quick self-assessment of your body.

  • Are your shoulders slumped over or rolled back in an upright posture?
  • When you stand up, do you evenly distribute your weight or lean excessively to one side?
  • Does your natural stance place your feet relatively shoulder-width apart or are your feet and legs close together in a closed-off position?
  • When you sit, does your lower back protrude out in a slumped position or maintain a straight, spine-friendly posture in your seat?

All of these are important considerations to make when evaluating and improving your posture and stance, which will lead to more confident body language over time. If you routinely struggle with maintaining good posture, consider buying a posture trainer/corrector, consulting a chiropractor or physical therapist, stretching daily, and strengthening both your core and back muscles.

Facial Expressions

Are you prone to any of the following in personal or professional settings?

  • Bruxism (tight, clenched jaw or grinding teeth)
  • Frowning and/or furrowing brows
  • Avoiding direct eye contact and/or staring at the ground

If you answered “yes” to any of these, then let’s start by examining various ways in which you can project confident body language through your facial expressions.

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1. Understand How Others Perceive Your Facial Expressions

A December 2020 study by UC Berkeley and Google researchers utilized a deep neural network to analyze facial expressions in six million YouTube clips representing people from over 140 countries. The study found that, despite socio-cultural differences, people around the world tended to use about 70% of the same facial expressions in response to different emotional stimuli and situations.[1]

The study’s researchers also published a fascinating interactive map to demonstrate how their machine learning technology assessed various facial expressions and determined subtle differences in emotional responses.

This study highlights the social importance of facial expressions because whether or not we’re consciously aware of them—by gazing into a mirror or your screen on a video conferencing platform—how we present our faces to others can have tremendous impacts on their perceptions of us, our confidence, and our emotional states. This awareness is the essential first step towards

2. Relax Your Face

New research on bruxism and facial tension found the stresses and anxieties of Covid-19 lockdowns led to considerable increases in orofacial pain, jaw-clenching, and teeth grinding, particularly among women.[2]

The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research estimates that more than 10 million Americans alone have temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ syndrome), and facial tension can lead to other complications such as insomnia, wrinkles, dry skin, and dark, puffy bags under your eyes.[3])

To avoid these unpleasant outcomes, start practicing progressive muscle relaxation techniques and taking breaks more frequently throughout the day to moderate facial tension.[4] You should also try out some biofeedback techniques to enhance your awareness of involuntary bodily processes like facial tension and achieve more confident body language as a result.[5]

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3. Improve Your Eye Contact

Did you know there’s an entire subfield of kinesic communication research dedicated to eye movements and behaviors called oculesics?[6] It refers to various communication behaviors including direct eye contact, averting one’s gaze, pupil dilation/constriction, and even frequency of blinking. All of these qualities can shape how other people perceive you, which means that eye contact is yet another area of nonverbal body language that we should be more mindful of in social interactions.

The ideal type (direct/indirect) and duration of eye contact depends on a variety of factors, such as cultural setting, differences in power/authority/age between the parties involved, and communication context. Research has shown that differences in the effects of eye contact are particularly prominent when comparing East Asian and Western European/North American cultures.[7]

To improve your eye contact with others, strive to maintain consistent contact for at least 3 to 4 seconds at a time, consciously consider where you’re looking while listening to someone else, and practice eye contact as much as possible (as strange as this may seem in the beginning, it’s the best way to improve).

3. Smile More

There are many benefits to smiling and laughing, and when it comes to working on more confident body language, this is an area that should be fun, low-stakes, and relatively stress-free.

Smiling is associated with the “happiness chemical” dopamine and the mood-stabilizing hormone, serotonin. Many empirical studies have shown that smiling generally leads to positive outcomes for the person smiling, and further research has shown that smiling can influence listeners’ perceptions of our confidence and trustworthiness as well.

4. Hand Gestures

Similar to facial expressions and posture, what you do with your hands while speaking or listening in a conversation can significantly influence others’ perceptions of you in positive or negative ways.

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It’s undoubtedly challenging to consciously account for all of your nonverbal signals while simultaneously trying to stay engaged with the verbal part of the discussion, but putting in the effort to develop more bodily awareness now will make it much easier to unconsciously project more confident body language later on.

5. Enhance Your Handshake

In the article, “An Anthropology of the Handshake,” University of Copenhagen social anthropology professor Bjarke Oxlund assessed the future of handshaking in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic:[8]

“Handshakes not only vary in function and meaning but do so according to social context, situation and scale. . . a public discussion should ensue on the advantages and disadvantages of holding on to the tradition of shaking hands as the conventional gesture of greeting and leave-taking in a variety of circumstances.”

It’s too early to determine some of the ways in which Covid-19 has permanently changed our social norms and professional etiquette standards, but it’s reasonable to assume that handshaking may retain its importance in American society even after this pandemic. To practice more confident body language in the meantime, the video on the science of the perfect handshake below explains what you need to know.

6. Complement Your Verbals With Hand Gestures

As you know by now, confident communication involves so much more than simply smiling more or sounding like you know what you’re talking about. What you do with your hands can be particularly influential in how others perceive you, whether you’re fidgeting with an object, clenching your fists, hiding your hands in your pockets, or calmly gesturing to emphasize important points you’re discussing.

Social psychology researchers have found that “iconic gestures”—hand movements that appear to be meaningfully related to the speaker’s verbal content—can have profound impacts on listeners’ information retention. In other words, people are more likely to engage with you and remember more of what you said when you speak with complementary hand gestures instead of just your voice.[9]

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Further research on hand gestures has shown that even your choice of the left or right hand for gesturing can influence your ability to clearly convey information to listeners, which supports the notion that more confident body language is readily achievable through greater self-awareness and deliberate nonverbal actions.[10]

Final Takeaways

Developing better posture, enhancing your facial expressiveness, and practicing hand gestures can vastly improve your communication with other people. At first, it will be challenging to consciously practice nonverbal behaviors that many of us are accustomed to performing daily without thinking about them.

If you ever feel discouraged, however, remember that there’s no downside to consistently putting in just a little more time and effort to increase your bodily awareness. With the tips and strategies above, you’ll be well on your way to embracing more confident body language and amplifying others’ perceptions of you in no time.

More Tips on How to Develop a Confident Body Language

Featured photo credit: Maria Lupan via unsplash.com

Reference

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