Five Small Gestures That Make People Feel Loved
In this season of giving, here are the little things researchers tell us really help spread the warmth of holiday love.
A recent AskReddit thread is giving everyone the warm fuzzies, posing the question, "What small gesture makes you feel enormously loved?" The answers span a wide range, from forehead kisses and back rubs, to addressing someone by their name when you're talking to them. Seems the little things aren't so little after all.
1. Handwritten Love Letters
While a text is easier/quicker, just taking the time to express your love the old fashioned way has been shown to increase motivation, decrease stress, and improve your overall mood and well-being. Put those thoughts on paper!
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2. Asking About My Day - And REALLY Meaning It
It's fascinating how little we're actually communicating with words these days. Be present for the response, no matter what. Listening with intent is a devotion of your time and caring. When someone asks about your day, remember that only seven percent of your answer is delivered to them verbally. The other 93, they get from tuning in to your tone and facial expressions.
3. The Human Touch
There are mountains of research explaining the mental and physical health benefits of physical touch. It has been correlated with decreased violence, increased trust, a stronger immune system, greater learning engagement, and stronger bonds between people.
4. Caring For Your Friends
"Text me when you're home and safe!" It's a true friend who wants to make sure you're safe and sound; and science has found that solid friendships encourage healthy behavior, boost self-esteem, and help fight off depression.
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5. Random Acts of Kindness
You can really brighten someone's day with an out-of-the-blue gift or kind act. Additionally, it's good for you. Research has found that doing random acts of kindness can improve your mood and relationship satisfaction, while decreasing anxiety and social avoidance. (source: bustle.com)
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Read more on how and why Good Friends Are Good For You (webmd.com)
"It is not the hearing that improves life, but the listening."
- Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi