We know this, it’s the little things that matter most. Grand gestures are, well, GRAND and all, but show your loved one how much you care this Valentine’s Day (or ANY day!) with a few small tokens, a sprinkle of thoughtfulness, and some quality time to connect and remember why you love each other so.
I polled a few friends and family members to see what matters most… Read on to discover their top suggestions for a happy holiday, and a happy life ?.
1. Spontaneous Hugs
This one immediately resonated with me, as my middle daughter is the QUEEN of hugs. In fact just about everyone she’s ever met will tell you so. And people LOVE it! Hugs make you feel good. Don’t use hugs just to say hello or goodbye – make them a part of your daily ritual! Scientific studies have shown that when hugged for seven or more seconds, your brain releases oxytocin (a.k.a. the “cuddle hormone”), which reduces one’s stress and enhances mood.
2. Give a handmade card
My husband is great at this and now my kids are too. Even if you think your words aren’t as eloquent as the professionals, it will mean more that they come from you!
3. Bake them a treat
Even if you aren’t typically a baker! Everyone loves homemade goodies – it’s a small gesture that will score big! Bonus points if you deliver a treat to their workplace.
4. Write a note and leave it somewhere they’ll find it
I love surprises and this is something that I do for my kids. Every once in a while, when packing a lunch, I might write them a little note. Or when I travel for work, I’ll leave a card on their pillow for them to find when they are going to bed. Know what? It works just as well for your significant other! Slip a little note into their computer bag, leave one on the bathroom mirror – anywhere you know they’ll find it and be delightfully surprised.
5. Take a hike
… Or a long walk along the beach. You know what it’s hard to do while you’re walking? Look at your phone. You know what it’s easy to do? Have a conversation?. Not only will you get a little fresh air and healthy movement, you get to connect with your loved one without distraction.
6. Do a chore around the house they dislike doing
I don’t mind housework, and in fact I find it very satisfying! But I remember a time that my husband ironed all the clothes that had been waiting there for WEEKS to get done, because ironing is the one task I find totally irritating. It was a little thing that meant so much!
7. Be Spontaneous
Surprise them by planning something to do together. A dinner out, a movie, a play, a picnic… anything! It feels REALLY special to be on the receiving end of a spontaneous date, one where you have no responsibilities and just get to be along for the ride.
Too often in conversation we are thinking about what we are going to say next, or recalling a story or anecdote that is relatable, and don’t listen well enough to what the other person is saying. Pause and listen. Then, ask a question. Even if it’s, “tell me more.”
9. Cook dinner together
OF COURSE this one is right up my alley! Remember that scene from Annie Hall with the lobsters? SO MUCH FUN! Cooking together is a chance for you to rediscover why you work so well together! It’s a dance in the kitchen – a give and take, a constant conversation that culminates in a beautiful meal that you both worked together to create. And, if it’s a total disaster? Have a big laugh about it! The trick here is not to let any of it stress you out. What’s the worst that will happen? You order take out, do the dishes the following morning, and have a great memory.
Who else will enjoy these “9 Little Things”? Please click to share with friends!