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Small ways to show you love and care for your partner, even when you're both busy

Life is busy. It’s very easy for you or your partner to feel neglected, at the bottom of a long list of priorities. So how can you make sure your partner still knows you love and care for them? 

It’s tempting to plan a grand (and possibly expensive) gesture. But whilst it’s wonderful to go out to an amazing restaurant, buy a special gift or go away somewhere special, that’s not always possible. The good news is that small, thoughtful gestures can communicate love just as well over the short term. 

Here’s a few great, super quick ideas… pick something you think your partner would like and adapt it so it’s right for your relationship.

Tell him or her what you love about them. 

Send texts, leave a voicemail and better still tell them face to face. Rather than saying things like I love you’ (although that’s always nice) try saying something really specific: I love you for being so kind and thoughtful about … for your courage when you … for helping me with …’ Look your partner in the eyes when you tell them face to face.

Give your partner a little treat. 

Bring him or her a favourite takeaway coffee and maybe a pastry too. Leave a chocolate on his or her pillow. Buy a single rose (ok so you might have to hunt for a florist for that one) or special pot plant.

Do something helpful.

Try to make life easier for your partner, jobs he/​she usually does. Get quotes for the car insurance, put on a load of washing (and dry / iron / put away items afterwards), sort and tidy that pile of stuff’ that’s been lurking for ages or clean the bathroom from top to bottom. 

Give your partner your undivided attention. 

Make a favourite brew and sit down to drink them together. Ask: what was the best part of your day today? What was the worst part?’ Just listen, you don’t need to fix. Try to be fully present for your partner while you’re talking (ignore your phone …and ignore the to-do list’ popping into your head). 

Get physical.

Give your partner a foot rub or shoulder massage. Put your arms around him or her and give them a long, lingering hug. Try kissing for sixty seconds or longer, more than giving him or her a peck on the cheek!



If you’re not sure which idea is the best way of showing love to your partner then try all five over the next few days and then ask them what made them feel most loved and why.

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Toucan Together’s Loving Module tries to get beyond the cliches about love and sex exploring a deeper, lasting love. It also looks at some of the things that can get in the way of giving and receiving love. 

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