Whether you’re too tired, too stressed, or too reliant on waiting for your partner to make the first move, time can cause even the most romantic couples to stop doing the little things they used to do for one another.
Small acts of kindness – also called caring behaviors – are simple ways to remind your partner that they are valued and that your relationship is important. To rekindle the romance in your relationship, try showing your appreciation with your caring behavior lists.
What Are Caring Behaviors?
Caring behaviors can be any verbal or nonverbal expression of affection, interest, or concern that you offer your partner. These seemingly small acts of kindness are the lifeblood of any relationship.
Caring behaviors don’t need to be fancy or expensive. While a chic night out on the town might be right up your partner’s alley, other small, personalized gestures like remembering to pick up their favorite wine on the way home can be just as effective. Displaying sensitivity, comforting, attentive listening, honesty, and nonjudgmental acceptance are all ways of showing your partner caring behavior.
Why Do Relationships Need Caring Behaviors?
At the start of a relationship, caring behaviors appear to happen automatically. From opening car doors to sneaking kisses in the back of the movie theater, we sum up these small acts of kindness as romance. But, when the honeymoon phase is over, what leads to the decline of these caring behaviors?
The answer isn’t malice or lack of affection. It’s the result of basic neglect. Couples stop making kind gestures to one another because they become comfortable in knowing their partner will love them regardless – and the stress and wear and tear of everyday life might take more precedence.
Caring behaviors reignite the spark in your relationship and remind both individuals that there’s more to life than work, chores, and responsibility. They remind you both why you chose each other as a partner in the first place.
How to Create a Caring Behavior List
To create your caring behaviors list, begin by grabbing two sheets of paper and sit down with your partner. Individually, both of you write down the little things that your partner used to do, still does, or you would like them to do that makes you feel loved and appreciated.
Annotate which of these behaviors is the most important to you, or which you would like to happen more often. Next, exchange lists with your partner. When you do something on their list, try to be low-key about it. Don’t look for the gratification – allow them to feel content that their need has been filled.
Most importantly, try to notice and show appreciation for what your partner is doing for you. Before you know it, your caring behaviors can become a caring routine that strengthens – and re-ignites – your relationship.