What makes you feel loved and cared for by your spouse or significant other?  Maybe it’s a mid-day phone call to check in and see how you’re doing. Or surprising you with a little gift from your favorite store. Or helping you finish that household project you’ve been procrastinating on and just needed some encouragement to push you over the hump. Whatever the case, just thinking about what makes you feel cared for can make you feel good. It can also give you a really important piece of insight.

Often, we give our sweetheart what we want, but not what they want. And it’s easy not to notice when you’re missing the mark. In fact, you may put a great deal of effort into it and end up irritated because they just don’t seem to appreciate it the way you do. It can lead to a whole series of misunderstandings, and even resentment. But there is an easy fix. Ask them this question:

What is it that I do for you that makes you feel most loved, cared for and special in our relationship?

(If your relationship has been rocky lately, you might have to phrase it a little differently: What is it you wish I did more often to make you feel loved, cared for and special in our relationship?)

Ask the question and then listen. Don’t get defensive if the answer isn’t what you want to hear. Instead, listen with a loving ear and with the intention of giving your partner what they most want.  Listening is a powerful relationship tool. Acting on what we hear is even more powerful.

Leave your comments below. I’d love to hear from you!