Say "I Love You" Without Uttering a Word
It is very easy to take advantage of your mate; we all do it, but when you are in a committed relationship, it is important to make an effort to continue to let your mate know (on a regular basis) that you love them. Sadly, saying "I love you" the same old way eventually loses its meaning or impact.
I know couples who do the same routine every day -- dress, shower, pack the briefcase and head out the door -- with a "love you" as they give their mate a peck on the cheek. But that gets old and stale. Finding new ways to express that sentiment is key to not only keeping your relationship intact but strengthening your bond in a very deep way. In my book, "Divorce: It's All About Control -- How to Win the Emotional, Psychological and Legal Wars," I talk about loss of love or intimacy. You need intimacy to keep a committed relationship healthy. Without expressing those feelings continuously, intimacy will dissipate and you and/or your partner will begin to look for it elsewhere. A little creativity and going the extra mile in the "I love you" department will pay huge dividends in your relationship, so if you are not already saying "I love you" in different ways, start now.
1. Stop off on your way home from work: Pick up your sweetheart's favorite "thing." Maybe it's a special flavor of Haagen-Dazs, the pizza with that wacky assortment of toppings, a new book by his/her favorite author, a CD he/she has mentioned wanting to get, a t-shirt with her/his (or as a couple your) favorite sayings on it. How about the laundry he/she keeps forgetting to pick up. Do not make a big deal of this little "love token" by some grand verbal announcement of it, instead leave it somewhere in the house where he/she will soon find it.
2. Throw that secret look: Send a smile or smirk that only the two of you understand. No words need to accompany it. Maybe it is a wink or nod or other signal the two of you have established that means, "I love you." Sending it to your lover when it is most unexpected, gesticulates tremendous warmth and affection. In all its silence, this beacon of love can end an argument, set up a soon-to-be intimate encounter or just remind your partner you are thinking special thoughts about them right in the middle of, well, nothing in particular.
3. Slip a supportive note or affirmation in her purse/his jacket pocket: Though it may be days or weeks before he/she finds and sees it. No need to ask, "Did you get my note?" Just let your mate come upon it randomly. Whenar mate does, the impact will be stupendous!
4. Demonstrate that you are trying to correct that annoying habit: Make an obvious effort to stop doing it. That could include picking up your dirty socks to cleaning the empty coffee cups off the center console of the car to tossing your gum in the trash when you have the urge to smack it. Do not say, "See, I'm working on that." Your actions will speak for themselves.
5. Send one of those "just because" or "it made me think of you" cards or books: Send one that has a message in it that only the two of you would get -- an affectionate or humorous one -- that reminds them you would not want to belong to anyone else. Shhh, do not mention it. By sending it, you have said it all.
6. Do a good deed for your partner: One they know you typically avoid taking on and expect them to do instead. This might be taking out the trash, cleaning up after dinner, making the kids' lunches, running to the grocery store, etc. Knowing that you did the chore or task he/she knows you generally dislike can speak volumes of how you feel about him/her.7. Post your anniversary date in a place where your mate will see it: Whether it is on the bathroom mirror, the refrigerator door, inside the checkbook or day planner or on their dashboard. Next to it, write, "Best day of my life." No need to say "I love you," you just did.8. Extend a gentle touch at least once a day: Not as a request for intimacy, but as a gesture of warmth and respect. A slight and tender stroke across his/her shoulder or a few soft fingertips across the cheek can speak loudly and clearly. It's time for you to make your list. When you can, add to it. Be creative. No matter how spectacular you currently believe your relationship to be, notice how much more rich it becomes.