We all seek love in one way or another. From lovers, friends, family, and followers who like our posts, it’s a universal desire.
That’s because love makes us feel safe – at home.
So how do we get straight to the end goal, the heart of the matter?
To quote the late iconic author Bell Hooks, “…but love is really more of an interactive process. It’s about what we do not just what we feel. It’s a verb, not a noun.”
A verb is, after all, an action. To love is to take action.
Keep reading to see some actions you can take to show someone you love them.
The five love languages define different ways people prefer to give and receive love.
The five love languages include:
Which one will make them (or you) feel more loved: organizing their cabinets, a reassuring shoulder squeeze at a dinner party, or a special gift?
Knowing someone’s love language helps inform how both parties give and recieve love — which allows you to focus your efforts on the things they’ll appreciate most — and hopefully vice versa!
Dr. Chapman wrote “The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate” in 1992, and it has been helping couples communicate and serve each other better ever since.
Since communication the core of any healthy relationship – having a conversation with your partner about your literal love languages can only help you both love each other better.
Find out your love language here.
Active listening means really paying attention. No phones, no making your to-do list in your head. Being truly engaged will make the other person feel heard and valued. The more you sit back and understand what they mean, the better you can respond. And this is a recipe for healthy relationships.
And, according to the nun in the movie LadyBird, attention and love are basically the same thing.
“Love me, love my dog” is more than a cute bumper sticker — it is real life.
Your partner’s friends and family are where they came from and where they’re going, and if you want to be on that road too, it’s a good idea to get in the car when they visit these people. This way, you’re not just their partner, you’re part of their life.
Getting to know the other people in someone’s life can help you better understand how others view them in comparison to you!
The written word is not dead.
You don’t have to be e.e. cummings to make your partner feel special...you just have to write from the heart. A simple message of “I’m thinking of you” or “I’m wearing that sweater that smells like you” can make their day.
Life is better when you do it with people who support you. Let them know you are that person. Be the one who sees the good in them. Encourage them to be their best selves and really believe that they can be.
Make sure they know, that no matter what, you are on their side every step of the way.
Asking anyone for advice can be tough because it requires being vulnerable.
Letting your guard down in front of someone you love can really show them that you care about their opinion and lens to a particular problem or question.
Go on adventures. Explore something new together. Or...have a regular movie night or maybe even a puzzle together! The important thing is that when you’re together...you’re together.
And just because you’re spending time around each other doesn’t mean you’re spending quality time with someone. Those who have known each other a long time can fall into a pattern of spending time with someone but not going deeper and being present.
Do they love a sports team?
Seeing artsy films at that hipster theater?
Plan a date focused on their interests, hobbies, or even something new you think’d they’d like. There is something to seeing your loved one come alive …and just being with them in it.
This is not to say you have to become a sports person or hike the Adirondacks…but you can try it. Who knows, you may like it too! And if not, it’s still an experience worth talking about, and shows your partner you have love for what they love.
Cardinal rule of loving someone else is to love yourself first.
We can’t give what we don’t have. So outside of your relationships, make sure to keep a strong sense of self, do your routines, go to your therapy, on your runs, write in your journals...whatever it takes to keep the light in you alive. Other people will appreciate the warmth it gives off.
Yes! Just because concepts are basic doesn’t mean they’re easy. You can show someone you love them mostly by clearly communicating you love them.
Love is not something to be ashamed of, to hide…although sometimes fear will prevent us from expressing love. There’s a fine line between protecting our hearts and opening them up. Both are valid…but I think we know in our heart of hearts when a person is good for us, and when they deserve to hear the good. And since we get what we give….you may get the same thing right back.
Although this post focused primarily on romantic love, we all know love can be found everywhere.
Love can be found when we seek it, and grow when we pay attention to it.
How cool is that?
You can choose how to love someone.
Remember: love is a verb!