Lesson 7: Not showing how you really feel

Words are not enough.  Similar to showing more affection, but not quite the same.  Words and actions are quite the duo.  A lot of the time, one doesn’t mean a thing without the other.  You can say something, the words are heard and understood, but your actions can completely negate them.  The opposite is also true.  You can show all the love and affection you possess and then completely undo it by saying the wrong thing at the wrong time.  

This is all about tying words and actions together.  If you want your message to be truly received by the other party as it was intended, it is important to ensure that everything about the sentiment makes sense to the person receiving it.  The actions and the words need to match.  Telling someone you love them loses value when your first action after coming home from a long day of work is to sit on the couch and turn on the TV.

Instead, do something different.  It doesn’t have to be unexpected, although there is nothing wrong with the ability to surprise.  Every now and then, don’t show up empty handed.  Show up with some flowers.  Purchased is good, personally picked is better.  Bring home something special for dinner but make it a surprise.  You don’t have to wait for a special occasion to get them a gift and you don’t have to hold off until anniversaries to remind them how important the relationship is to you.  Make it about them and you and nothing else.    

It is difficult for anyone to believe they are loved if you say something, public or private, that they interpret in a manner that you did not intend.  These contradictions and negative feelings can build up over time.  You also need to remember that when it comes to these things, everyone has different levels of tolerance.  If the hugs, kisses, hand-holding, and public displays are not as loving as the dialogue you use, there is a good chance you will be watching them leave someday.

It is also important to pay close attention.  It cannot be stressed enough.  It is easy to forget things or overlook the signs.  Some of them may be easy to spot, some may be covert.   Be watchful and remember that the details matter.  The small things can matter just as much as the big things.  It is important that this is reciprocated, but you have control over your part of the relationship.  If you are ever confused or are not sure whether or not something is important, ask.  It is ok to ask.  If they get mad or don’t understand why you are asking, let them know it is because you care enough to want to get it right.  

Getting angry because someone wants to make sure they understand is foolhardy.  If having to ask or wanting to make sure is an issue, you likely have bigger problems.  Some might believe that these kinds of thoughts and actions don’t or shouldn’t require any extra effort.  If you truly love the person, they should always come naturally right?  Wrong!  We are all human and humans are not infallible.  All the proof you need can be found in any YouTube or Google search imaginable.  It is easy to make a mistake and overlook something seemingly minuscule, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t important.  Pay attention.  The small things matter.

Takeaways:

  1. Don’t just tell them, show them
  2. Ask questions
  3. Surprise them
  4. Be honest, no one is perfect
  5. The small things matter

 

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