Love is not always easy. I witness how difficult it is every day in my work with couples. And being married, I also know love is not always easy. I am not exempt from the challenges of love either..and I’m a marriage counselor! I know that it’s more than saying “I love you.” It’s important to say that to your partner, along with meaningful compliments and expressions of empathy and gratitude. These are good deposits in what John Gottman refers to as your emotional bank account.
But what about putting love into practice?
Bestselling author and researcher Brene Brown argues that “love is beautiful when it’s professed, but it’s only meaningful when it’s practiced.”
How do you and your partner “practice” love in your marriage in a way that creates meaning for both of you? Do you offer gifts, express appreciation, do chores around the house, intentionally spend time together, or give nonsexual physical affection?
Try this: Have a conversation with your mate about how love is expressed and practiced, both verbally and in meaningful ways and actions in your relationship. Express what you need from your partner, in a gentle manner, and seek to understand what your partner needs from you–to feel loved. Keep it simple: “Hon, I love you, but what do you need from me to feel that love?”