Last week roses and heart balloons filled the grocery stores and the stationary aisles were brimming with cheesy cards. As a result, it was pretty hard to forget to showcase a little extra love around Valentine’s Day. But what about the rest of the year?
I know that for me it can be so easy to forget to make the effort and take the time to intentionally show my love for my boyfriend. Despite our hectic lives, I have discovered 5 simple ways to be intentional and loving in my relationship all year long.
- Love Letters: Being a young professional has proven to be one of the most challenging transitions in my life thus far. Amidst the busy days and long hours, my boyfriend and I can easily jump to sharing our to-do lists rather than whispering sweet nothings. Recently, on a particularly hard day, Matt sent me a much needed love e-mail and, while it’s not quite as romantic as an old-fashioned letter, it truly hit the spot. Despite our busy days and hectic lives, taking a moment to put down in words what we are thankful for and to take time to encourage one another has proven one of the sweetest ways we can connect.
- Simple Surprises: Some days all it takes is a post it note that says “I love you” to help me feel loved by Matt. As it is with many men, the way to Matt’s heart is through his stomach. A simple surprise batch of cookies or homemade dinner can be just the ticket to make him feel appreciated. These sweet and simple surprises help to bring a blushing smile to our faces even on the busiest of days.
- To-Do-Together Lists: Maybe it’s my tendency to create a list about anything and everything, but one unique way that I feel especially close to Matt is making lists together. We recently put together a list of all the places we wanted to travel to in our lives. We also continue to add to an ongoing list of restaurants in our city that we want to try. Whatever the list is, sitting down and thinking of it together is a simple way we can show our intention to adventure together.
- Say Goodnight, Every Night: I have to give my boyfriend full credit for this simple way of showing love. Early on in our relationship he started calling me every night to simply chat and catch up on our days. Eventually he shared that ending the day together was something truly important to him. Over the years, through long distance and now living across the street from one another, he has called me every night. Sometimes we talk for 1 minute and sometimes for 1 hour. However long it is, it’s enough to time come down from the craziness of our days and reconnect with one another.
- Unplug: Sometimes the best thing you can do in a relationship is disconnect (from your phone that is). Over the past few months, when days have become especially stressful, Matt has started encouraging me to put my phone and computer away for just a few minutes. We don’t immediately turn on Netflix to solve the silence, but rather just take in a moment of nothingness together. It is the simplest thing you can do with your partner, but has the greatest effect.
While I enjoyed showering my favorite guy with some extra love this past Valentine’s Day, I know that we will continue to strive towards being intentional in these little ways each and every day. Over the past few years with Matt, I have learned so much about myself and about love, but one of the greatest lessons has been finding the beauty in simplicity. Each of these little moments and simple gestures have become major ways we feel loved and encourage by one another throughout our days.
What are simple ways you like to show your significant other love?