The secret is its simplicity; small acts of consideration.
It takes time to learn about each other, it takes time to grow with each other but are you waking up every day enthusiastically falling in love with your partner? Are you looking for more reasons to love that person or are you trying to avoid them? Are you looking at ways of how you can better yourself for them and your relationship or do you have a bunch of excuses why they aren't trying enough or changing for you?
Sometimes it's hard to find balance and I feel that the way we like to show love might not even be the way we want to get love in return.
We can get it completely wrong by assuming what the other one wants and it can take a while to fine tune your relationship due to previous experiences or other influences.
So often I've noticed that people try to give their partner what they want and not realizing that that might not be filling their love cup.
Have you heard about the 5 Love Languages? Each of us has a primary love language which speaks more deeply to us than all the others. There is no one right answer. The five basic love languages are ways to express love emotionally. I encourage you to learn, speak and apply these languages to open-up and understand your partners needs but more importantly your needs as well.
I've found that knowing these languages can help with other relationships in your life too. It can give you insight about yourself, so feel free to do the test regardless of your current situation.
The 5 Love Languages
1. Words of affirmation – Using words to build up the other person.
2. Gifts – a gift says, “He was thinking about me.”
3. Acts of Service – Doing something for your spouse that you know they would like.
4. Quality time – Giving your spouse your undivided attention.
5. Physical touch – Holding hands, hugging, kissing, sexual intercourse, are all expressions of love.
The first thing is to be absolutely honest when doing the test. If you do not do it with a pure heart the results will be fake and therefore it will cause misunderstanding of your true needs.
It can take a while but understanding these methods and applying them to your relationship will allow you to have a deeper connection with each other and fulfill each others needs.
I learned through doing the test that my primary love language is physical touch. Quality time is my secondary language.
Looking back at some of the couples I learned what love looked like and there were a multitude of examples; the most significant one was my grandparents. Growing up and even up to their last days they showed love by touching each other; soft kisses and holding hands. They would literally walk to the car hand in hand even if it was two feet away.
I also remember being close and snuggle-y with them myself. As a small little kid I would climb on to Grampa while he was watching tv, I'd play with his face, ears and hair.
In the mornings I remember coming down stairs, sitting on the kitchen counter and my Gramma would swoop me into her robe and give me the warmest hugs (I loved the way her skin smelled). So touch has always been a big sign of love for me.
Later in my life I made bad choices base on the need of touch, not realizing that that wasn't trusting love, because of the lack of understanding the languages. These days I am much more protective.
In a relationship you should play to your strengths. If one is better than the other at something, it's ok that one does something and the other something else. You don't have to be equal in the sense that you split everything in half, you should utilize each others strengths in your relationship. We all have skills in different areas and therefore we should contribute with those skills rather than trying to tackle every task.
Like our strengths and skills, needs are also different, by understanding what you really need and what your primary love language is, you narrow the gap of conflicts and confusion and learn how to cherish your partner.