A powerful tool in relationships is appreciation. This gesture packs a lot of meaning and demonstrates that one is thoughtful and observant. Saying appreciations can tear down walls and help the other feel safe and secure, which are indispensable foundations of a healthy relationship.
I believe that showing appreciation is much easier in the beginning stages of a relationship when the passion is more intense. As relationships mature, the thoughtful actions of our partners seems more routine and expected rather than demonstrations of caring. We can easily overlook the remarkable qualities our partner’s posses and all that they do!
For example, your partner may choose to make coffee for you in the morning. She/He may choose to make the bed, prepare you a meal, get the children ready for school, give you space, clean the gutters, fix something that is broken, etc. Your partner doesn’t have to do these things; rather, your partner does them out of love.
Here are some tips for effectively showing appreciation:
1) Make sure there are no distractions and ask your partner if he/she has a few moments to talk. If now is not a good time, ask when it would be a good time.
2) Face your partner and look into his/her eyes because the eyes are the windows to the soul! If you touch each other, even better!
3) Think about what you want to say and phrase things positively. For example, instead of saying, “I appreciate when you don’t react to me,” say, “I appreciate when you really listen to me.”
4) State what you appreciate and deepen the moment by saying why it is important to you.
This potent relationship tool is essential in relationships. Appreciations are often overlooked as we can easily take our partners for granted. I encourage each of you to be observant in your relationships. I encourage you to recognize the amazing person who is your partner, recognize all that he/she does, and most importantly, tell them!
Bryan Norman 2011