How to Show Others you Care

By Alex MacDonald, Education and Outreach Specialist
“I love you.” Too often, this is something said quickly on the way out the door, rushed at the end of a phone call, or in a short goodnight text. Regardless of how or when you say it, it’s important that you not only tell your loved ones how you feel, but that you show them how you feel. Here are a few ways you can show your loved one just how much they mean to you.
1.  Listen.
This is an obvious one, but it really does make the world of difference. When you’re listening to a loved one, ask them questions about what they’re saying, make eye contact, be sure to let them know they’re being heard. Even try to follow up with them later. Imagine how your child would feel if you asked them what’s been going on in that TV show they’ve been telling you about. They’ll be excited because they know that you’re listening, and that you care.
2. Surprise.  
Do little things to surprise your loved one and make their day. Clean the kitchen. Make their favourite dinner. Write a list of 10 things you love about them. Bring them a coffee at work. The smallest things can put a smile on someone’s face without costing a dime.  A little surprise here and there shows your loved one you’re thinking about them and that they matter to you.  
3. Spend Time.  
Again, this one may seem obvious, but spending quality time with a loved one can do a lot to make them (and you) feel loved. Set aside time with no phones, no interruptions, no distractions, and be just the two of you. This could be the time you spend with your child on the way home from school, the time you and your partner have on dates, or any other time where you can focus on your loved one.
4. Appreciate.  
A great way to make someone feel loved is to show them how much you appreciate them. Say thanks when you notice them doing something for you. Whether they’re doing the dishes, picking you up from work, or if they got the groceries this week, let them know how thankful you are for them!
5. Compliment.
What better way to make someone feel good than to give them a compliment? It could be on something about their appearance if you like a new outfit they’re trying out, but don’t forget to also compliment them on other things! Tell them you enjoyed the dinner they made, or that they always make you laugh, or that you’re lucky to know someone who’s so generous. A little compliment here and there is guaranteed to bring out a smile!
The best years are ones filled with joy, happiness, and love. These five tips will help you ensure you and the people you care about have a year full of love.