Do you want to know if it makes a difference if you compliment your significant other? My answer is a resounding yes! Complimenting your partner is a great way to show them that you care and to make them feel loved and valued in your relationship. The damaging cycle of criticism and defensiveness can be broken with this technique. You can strengthen your bond with one another and increase your level of happiness by adopting a culture of gratitude.
Keep reading to gain insight into:
- How many positive experiences outweigh negative ones to keep a relationship healthy
- The art of fostering a grateful community
- Ideas for compliments
- Is there a consequence if we are unable to accept compliments?
That Optimal Proportion of Good to Bad
How often do you think you compliment your significant other? How many negative ones are there, if any?
Estimate the proportion of compliments to criticisms you’ve received over the course of a week.
Just what is it that you’re hoping for?
The Gottman Institute, if you can believe it, has actually quantified this.
Over the course of forty years, they have conducted countless studies on the dynamics of married life. What did they find, exactly? A happy couple typically has twenty positive exchanges for every negative one.
They maintain a positive-to-negative outlook even when tensions are high, saying five good things for every one bad.
That’s the sweet spot you want to hit for things to stay harmonious between the two of you.
Knowing this number allows you to approach it from two different angles, which is very useful.
To what extent do you prefer to express yourself positively or negatively?
View my video for a breakdown of criticism, which includes:
- Irreparable harm caused by criticism and how to avoid it
- When and how to criticize when complaining
- What to do if you can’t stop judging your significant other
- In the event that your partner is constantly picking holes in your performance, here’s what you can do:
Practicing gratitude for your partner can help you feel less critical.
Try to find more occasions where you can give praise and gratitude. Actually, as time goes on, you will become less critical of yourself.
Praise one another to foster an environment of gratitude.
What your partner really wants from you is to feel loved, appreciated, understood, accepted, important, and close to you.
To show your partner affection and respect may seem like stating the obvious, but it isn’t always simple.
Never save your kind words for a special occasion.
Always keep an eye out for new ways to let your significant other know how much they mean to you.
Try to spot them in your regular, everyday activities.
You should tell them what you admire about them when you think it.
Dislike them so much that you can’t even think good thoughts? You can’t find the good in your partner unless you actively seek it out, so set aside some time every day to reflect on them.
Life is always changing, and you can never count on anything being the same for very long. The trajectory of events is either upward or downward.
One possible outcome is an ascending spiral. This is how it works:
Keep in mind that it’s not enough to simply think nice things about your partner; you need to actually say them.
Recommendations and Gratitude for Collaborators
Many married couples gradually stop expressing gratitude and praise to one another.
Yet there are many who manage to keep it going, and those couples tend to be contented.
Unique and specific compliments have the greatest impact.
Could it be that you’ve fallen out of the habit of complimenting your significant other?
These are some suggestions:
- It’s so much fun to see how you interact with the kids.
- What you said to the baby earlier was very sweet.
- What a wonderful parent you are.
- I appreciate your help with laundry folding.
- I appreciated our lunchtime conversation very much.
- We love that t-shirt on you.
- I really appreciate you filling up the gas tank for me this morning.
Have you recently complimented your significant other? To what upbeat remark do you intend to subject them next?
Are You Capable of Accepting Praise?
Catherine here; I’m a female Brit by the name of Catherine.
Until I realized its significance, you can bet that I was terrible at accepting compliments.
Are you uncomfortable or embarrassed by positive comments from others?
When someone asks you a question, how do you usually respond?
Take a moment and try to picture it. Let’s pretend we’re face-to-face and I tell you that you’re a wonderful parent for how you dealt with that situation. What comes to mind as the next thing to say?
It’s not uncommon for us to respond in a condescending way without even meaning to.
The respondent to a compliment may interpret “No, I’m not” as “Don’t say that.”
It’s not pleasant to have your compliments rejected.
When compliments are not accepted, what follows? Eventually, they’ll stop receiving them altogether from their partners.
However, this transformation is rarely reflected upon.
One of you will eventually complain, “You never say anything nice to me any more,” but it will be years later.
Just how does one take a compliment?
The solution is straightforward: just offer a thank you and a smile.
It’s possible that you’ll have to experience the ickiness for a while before you can learn to push through it.
However, familiarity and ease will come with time and effort.
Can you recall the last time your significant other complimented you? Do something about it and begin complimenting them once a day.
Return in a few weeks and report back on any developments.