There are certain people in our lives whom we love beyond measure and couldn’t imagine living without. While this is obvious to us, it might not really be common knowledge to them.
But isn’t that a shame? Shouldn’t these amazing people know how important they are and how much they mean to us?
Well, my friends, it’s time to take a step back and truly think about whether you give your loved ones the special attention they deserve. If the answer is a low mumbled, “I don’t know,” then perhaps going through this list will help you out.
1. Keep Up with Their Lives
Are you someone who has plenty of love to give around but barely knows what’s happening with your friends and family? Well, I hate to break it to you, but being ignorant is not a sign of caring. If you want to show someone you appreciate them, you should start by keeping up with their lives.
Try to find out what their hobbies, passions, and interests are and ask them about their day. Is your mom facing problems at work? Is your friend suffering from a math assignment? How is your sister enjoying the new club she joined?
This may seem simple, but it’s often something we forget to do. Showing interest in the daily tidbits of a loved one’s life will tell them that you genuinely care.
2. Be There During the Lows
We’ve all heard of the phrase, “A friend in need is a friend indeed,” and this will always hold true. The best thing you can do for someone you love is support them during bad times.
Be it some sort of failure, rejection, heartbreak, or even just the woes of the world in general, having someone supportive to share problems with is always appreciated.
Make sure your loved ones never feel lonely and always have a place of comfort with you. People always remember the friends and family that were there during their hardest times, so make your presence known.
These are the moments when your loved ones need you the most, and knowing they have unconditional support could be the thin line between them recovering and falling into depression.
3. Cheer Them on in All Their Endeavors
Your support doesn’t just end by being there during all the hardships your loved ones face. You should also be motivating them to follow their dreams and celebrating every success, no matter how small. Showing the special people in your life that you’re proud of them and finding happiness in their success, is the ultimate way to tell them you care.
So, the next time your friend has to present in front of class or has an upcoming test, send them an encouraging text. Also, if your loved ones have been working on something for a long time and are getting ready to display it to the world, like having an art exhibition or performing a song, make sure to show up and cheer them on!
4. Be Expressive About How Important They Are
Most of the time, we assume our loved ones know how we feel about them. While this is usually true, it never hurts to acknowledge this fact publicly, or even just a little more loudly to them. It’s true; a simple heartfelt Mother’s Day post on social media or even just a personalized card can make your mom’s day.
However, this doesn’t mean you only wait for special occasions to express how you feel. Try to let them know on a regular basis that they’re important and that you’re grateful for their presence.
Of course, verbally acknowledging your love isn’t the only way to go about this, but a few words of kindness, such as a “thank you” when they do something for you or a “missing you” text when they’re away, will make all the difference.
You should let the special people in your life know how you feel while you can.
5. Give Honest Feedback While Keeping the Judgement at Bay
If you care deeply about someone, you’ll naturally feel like helping them out, be it through advice or helping them identify their problems. This is perfectly fine, as long as you’re not doing it in a negative manner.
Giving honest feedback is very important, and everybody needs someone who will tell them the truth, even in the harshest of times. Sympathy is okay, but it doesn’t help people improve their lives or move past obstacles.
So, if you see your friend wasting away their potential or not applying to a certain job out of anxiety, it’s not wrong to give them a little push.
However, keep in mind that nobody is perfect, and how you present your advice matters a lot. You should not judge your loved one for their life choices or their mistakes. Have a gentle, heart to heart discussion and don’t nag them about their shortcomings repeatedly.
6. Respect Their Time and Follow Through with Commitments
Never take your loved ones for granted and try to follow through with your promises. This means you shouldn’t be postponing hangouts just because your friend lives next door or you see them every day at work. Show up on time whenever you meet them and give them your full attention.
Scrolling on your phone while they’re talking about something important definitely gives the wrong impression. Also, be respectful of their time and priorities. Perhaps your friend doesn’t have the same intense work schedule as you do, but this doesn’t mean they’ll always be available to meet you.
Remember, actions speak louder than words. No matter how much you tell someone you care for them, if you don’t fulfill your commitments, or you keep making them feel like your permanent backup option, you’ll lose these special people in no time.
7. Pick Your Battles and Learn to Let Things Go
If you truly care about someone, arguments are something you will always try to avoid. This doesn’t mean bottling up your feelings though. Simply speaking, pick your battles and don’t make a big deal about small issues.
Try to step into your loved one’s shoes and see things from their perspective. What is annoying or hurting you may not be intentional, or perhaps they have a good reason for their opinions or actions from their point of view.
Communicate clearly and directly, and listen to the people you care about first, without jumping to conclusions. Show the other person that you understand their situation and are willing to work things through.
It also doesn’t hurt to apologize for whatever you say, even if you’re not the one who was wrong. Letting things go and taking active steps to improve your relationship tells your loved one that you truly do care.
8. Shower Them with Presents and Nice Surprises
This may seem like the shallowest piece of advice, but who doesn’t love a few presents and spontaneous surprises now and then? Your gifts don’t have to be super fancy. As long as they come from the heart and reflect the fact that you gave effort and time, it’s going to be a winner.
For instance, you could get your fiancé or spouse a meaningful anniversary gift or even arrange a simple date reminiscing the first time you met. By giving her or him something of sentimental value, rather than something mainstream, you’ll be expressing how much you really care. All wedding anniversaries are a great event to express your feelings for your partner.
You could also take a DIY approach, like baking your dad a cake for his birthday or giving your mom a care pack for herself. Trust me, your parents will be over the moon because you gave them time and did something special, specifically catered to their needs.
Always keep in mind that no matter how large or expensive the gift is, it’s the thought that counts.
Although we’ve got a lot we want to say to our loved ones, we seldom express it. But you never know how much time you have with them.
However, fear not – because caring for others is not rocket science. All you need is a bit of common sense, empathy, and communication skills.
So, follow the tips above and make the most of the time you do have. Let those closest to your heart know that they are valued and give them a reason to smile!
Main Image Credits: Instagram @fashionstylefoodie