3. Offer assistance when it’s needed. If your partner needs to mail a letter or make a bank deposit and seems a little stressed about it, offer to do whatever the task is. Help with even the little things can make a big difference.
4. Learn to listen. Most of the time, just talking about what’s going on can make you feel a lot better. So sit down with the one you love and lend them your ear. Allow your mate to vent about whatever is bugging them, and watch as the cloud lifts.
5. Don’t sweat the small stuff. Giving in on the little things will make your partner feel loved as well as make it easier for other things to go the way you want when it matters more to you.
6. Do something nice and unexpected. Make your partner coffee in the morning, especially if this is something they usually do for you. If you divvy up chores, and it’s not your week to do the laundry, offer to do it anyway and make your mate smile.
7. Make suggestions — never demands. Making a suggestion is different from telling others to do things your way. You’re offering another idea to work with while leaving the choice up to them. Your partner will appreciate your thoughtfulness.
8. Trust your partner to do the right thing. Trusting our mates makes everything easier. You need to know in your heart that your partner will always act appropriately. If you need counseling to make this happen, get it.
9. Take care of your partner in sickness as well as health. A little chicken soup and a kind word can really make them feel so much better.
Life can be difficult, but with a partner who is willing to lighten your burden, it can be a sweet experience, too.
Barton Goldsmith, Ph.D. is an award-winning psychotherapist and humanitarian. He is also a columnist, the author of 8 books, and a blogger for PsychologyToday.com with nearly 35 million readers. You can reach him at Barton@BartonGoldsmith.com