If you’re looking for ways to improve your marriage or relationship, you can start with a compliment. Compliments given with sincerity are a genuine gift of love. Offer them often. Be generous with praise for your partner. Catch them doing something right. Let them know you noticed. Compliments demonstrate appreciation. When you feel appreciated, you tend to feel loved. Everyone wants to be appreciated.
If you haven’t complimented your spouse lately, it’s time to start. The road to prosperity in relationships is paved with a commitment to generosity toward your partner. A good compliment is not just something that can make you feel better; a good compliment has the power to improve your marriage. I’m not talking about the same old “You look nice today,” but different things each time.
We feel closest to people who cause us to feel good about ourselves.
When you give sincere encouragement and authentic compliments to your spouse, several things are accomplished.
• Your spouse’s self-confidence is increased.
• Your own self-worth is increased.
• The friendship between the two of you is strengthened.
• You will feel more romantic.
Be sincere. When compliments are not sincere, your compliments turn into flattery. Flattery is usually received with negativity and may be perceived as being manipulative.
Never keep compliments to yourself. “I’m so glad I married you,” is a good one. Compliments are to be shared. Sincere compliments cost nothing however a lack of compliments can cost you your relationship! Little kindnesses are what got you happily from “back then” to now. Never stop doing the things that brought you together in the first place. Think back to all of the things that you used to say to your sweetheart when you were dating. Start there. Make a list. Begin to do it again! You may want to share your words of appreciation with a hug.
There is absolutely no room for “constructive” criticism in a healthy love relationship. Constructive means to build up. The intent of criticism is to tear down. Those two words do not fit together at all. Criticism by its very nature is only and always destructive, not constructive. Try constructive compliments instead; expressions of love straight from the heart. Those words will be music to your partner’s ears. Some might call it “ear candy!”
Perhaps all of us would be better off if we would take a lesson from the weather. It pays no attention to criticism.
People don’t change because they are criticized. They change when the relationship is nurtured with warmth and goodwill – with compliments that inspires them to please their partner. Appreciation is on the list of top ten needs for most people.
“Those who give the best compliments must first develop an awareness of the other person’s gifts, talents, appearance, hard work and other things that play a part in an authentic compliment. Take note of the daily accomplishments, character traits and physical qualities you appreciate about your spouse. Material for a meaningful compliment abounds when you look for it.” ~ Zoe Maletta
All there is, is relationships! Relationships are about how we relate; with ourselves; with people; with our love partner; with the predicaments we find ourselves in; with our boss; with everything! If you want to keep your significant other happy and content – try an occasional compliment.
It is also important to earn how to receive a compliment as well as give one. Trading compliments with your lover is a sure way to keep your romance alive. There is nothing worse than getting a compliment that feels obligatory.
“Some partners truly stop celebrating or complimenting their partner in small or large ways because their partner will not take a compliment. Low self-esteem or a history of criticism can make anything positive feel suspect, manipulative and discrepant to an unloving self. Sadly, the dismissed compliment is depriving for both. It can engender anger, avoidance, and dismissal– the very things that re-enforce low self-esteem.” ~ Suzanne Phillips, Psy.D.
Look for something about your partner that is uniquely special that really deserves a compliment. Pay attention! Do your best to offer at least one compliment to your parter every day. Frequency is important. Make it a point to look for things to compliment. Things go better with sincere compliments!
Copyright © 2013 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” Larry James is a professional speaker, author, relationship coach and an award winning nondenominational Wedding Officiant. He performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere. Something NEW about relationships is posted every 4th day on this Relationships BLOG.
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