How amazing does it feel to know someone cares about you? Sometimes, all it takes is a small gesture on their part to show how much they care. Oppositely, it’s nice to know you’re doing the same for the ones you love. There are little ways to show you care without being overbearing that we can all start using with our loved ones to show them how appreciated they are. The tactics, as you’ll see below, are all really simple and can make such a huge difference in someone’s day. What’s more, showing someone how much you care might in turn make you feel pretty great too. It’s a total win-win.
When I first starting thinking about this topic, my mind went directly to romantic relationships. However, showing the people in your life that you love them doesn’t need to be solely designated for those you’re in a couple with — the gestures can (and should!) be used on everyone else you care a lot about too. This includes your family and your friends, in addition to many others. As we all know to be true, expressing your love is an important part of life. Some of us are great at it, and others just aren’t — but, it doesn’t have to be difficult. It doesn’t require a lot of energy, time, or money either to make someone’s day by showing you care. Let’s talk about some easy ways to get it done. Here are 11 little ways to show you care without being overbearing.
1. Resist The Urge To Argue About Nothing
An urge to argue with someone — whether it’s your SO, your sibling, your parent, a friend, or whomever else — can creep up at any time, especially when the person is getting on your last nerve. If you want to show you care, though, try resisting that tendency to pick a fight, according to Seventeen. The outlet recommended instead figuring out what is making you (and/or the other person) angry, and addressing it in a calm and rationale way, so that you both come out on the good side. Plus, don’t be afraid to apologize when it’s needed.
2. Get Extra Excited
If you’re someone who leans more towards monotone, getting overly excited about something might seem like quite the feat — but it doesn’t have to be all that daunting. To easily show you care, amp up your excitement factor just a tad, according to Jarrid Wilson, a pastor, inspirational speaker, and blogger, who wrote on the topic on his site www.JarridWilson.com. By showing you’re excited about a plan your loved one has made, for example, you’ll simultaneously show that you appreciate the time and effort they put into planning. Wilson suggested thanking your loved one more excitedly as a way to show this appreciation.
3. Give Them Your Full Attention
How great does it feel when you’re talking to someone and you know they’re paying close attention to what you’re saying? Especially nowadays with the distractions phones pose, it’s really difficult to get people to fully listen. Use this point to your advantage when trying to show your loved one that you care. Marriage therapist Mike Dow, PsyD spoke to Woman’s Day on this topic, and used men as an example, noting they will feel appreciated knowing you’re focused only on them as they’re speaking. So, put down the phone and listen to them without interruption. Dow said, “It says, ‘You are my priority, and I love you.’”
4. Offer Up A Bear Hug
The great thing about hugs, in my opinion, is that they can be used on anyone. According to Caring.com, touch in this way gives us those feel good feelings as dictated by our brains and skin nerve endings. The outlet suggested showing you care by making a habit of intentionally hugging your loved one every day, and/or trying other touch tactics, like a gentle shoulder squeeze.
5. Give Him Or Her Some Time With Their Friends
A easy way to show you care when you’re in a relationship, for instance, is by giving your SO a little time with their friends. According to Redbook, sometimes we all just need some time away from our partners in this manner. JoAnn Magdoff, Ph.D., a New York psychotherapist, spoke to the outlet of men particularly, and noted, “Men get energy from being away. They hang loose, talk or not talk. It gives them great intimacy without tremendous demands.” Whether your partner is a guy or a girl, consider giving them this time away — and while you’re at it — take some time for you too. You might both benefit from it tremendously.
6. Use The Element Of Surprise
It doesn’t have to be a huge surprise to be effective — just a little something can really do the trick, according to a PsychCentral.com article by John M. Grohol, Psy.D. In his article he wrote, “Most people love a surprise, especially when that surprise is something that helps them or makes their life a little bit easier, if just for a minute.” The teeniest surprise can show you appreciate your loved one, so come up with something small you know they’ll enjoy — whether that’s something like a cupcake from their favorite bakery or a “just because” gift — and try this tactic on them today.
7. Step In To Do Their Chores
Do you and your SO split chores? Try taking over their chores this week as a way of showing you care, according to the University of Rochester Medical Center. The site recommended taking on some of your loved one’s responsibilities around the house like laundry, cooking, or watching the kids.
8. Compliment Them
Compliments are so, so simple to give out, especially when it’s being given to someone you love (just think of how much wonderful things you can come up with about your loved one right off the top of your head — likely tons). When it comes to complimenting men, clinical psychologist Andra Brosh, PhD., spoke to Woman’s Day and said, “Genuine compliments on his looks and strength confirm that you admire him, which equates to love.” When it comes to the ladies in your life, any compliment is a great compliment, at least the way I see it.
9. Write Them A Letter
This one comes as a personal recommendation. Several years ago when I was in college I wrote a handwritten letter to my grandparents and mailed it to their house. For years they talked about how much that one single letter meant to them. The letter took me all of about 10 minutes to write, but the afterglow of it lasted for ages. Don’t want to handwrite something? Try emailing a note to your loved one. You can turn their whole day around with just a few sentences.
10. Let Them Choose The Restaurant
Another super easy way to show you care is by letting your loved one choose the plans — especially if it’s normally you doing the choosing. According to Nicole Martinez, Psy.D., LCPC, in her piece on the Huffington Post, try letting your SO choose the plans for an entire evening to show you care, including all aspects, like the restaurant. Then, alternate doing this whenever you get the chance to go out together. Martinez said this will add variety to your relationship, and will help keep things interesting, too.
11. Cook Them Their Favorite Meal
Does your loved one especially enjoy that sauce you make? Cook it for him or her tonight as a caring gesture. According to Babble.com, this tactic is ultra-effective when your loved one is the person who usually does the cooking. Just think of how happy they will be to not only find a meal cooked for them, but their favorite meal, at that.
If you’re hoping to show your loved one that you care in a way that is far from overbearing, try one (or more) of the tactics discussed above. You might be pleasantly surprised by how simple it is to ensure this person understands how much you truly appreciate them.