Whether you’re at the start of a relationship…or are years down the road with this man…either way, you can always use tips on how to make a man feel loved.
I mean, we all want to feel loved, right? And yet, sometimes we overlook what’s right in front of us and take that love for granted. But we all need to feel loved and appreciated, and you can give that gift to your partner by, as Christopher Dollard, Editor-in-Chief of The Gottman Relationship Blog says, making a deposit in your Emotional Bank Account.
What the bleep is an Emotional Bank Account? Consider it where the two of you share your emotions and closeness. An argument or careless comment might make a withdrawal from that virtual bank account, while the following tips on how to make a man feel loved with reap dividends. Put your attention on growing your emotional wealth, not taking away from it.
Apply the Golden Rule…to a Degree
Think about how it makes you feel when he expresses his feelings or shows he cares through his actions. Pretty great, huh? You want to reciprocate what he does for you with your own ways of expressing love for him. But while the whole Golden Rule thing works in general (“do unto others as you would have them do unto you”), realize that the specifics of how to make a man feel loved may differ from what you personally would want.
We’ll talk in a bit about Love Languages, but just realize: everyone responds to things differently. You might be over the moon when he vacuums the house without you nagging him, and that might make you feel loved. He, on the other hand, might not give a crap if you vacuum. That’s not a way to tell him you love him.
So think about your guy and what makes him tick. That will be the way to his heart.
5 Tips on How to Make a Man Feel Loved
Showing your love and gratitude for your man will keep your relationship going on and on. Yes, it gets harder the longer you’ve been together to remember to take time to express yourself and reinforce your feelings, but that’s all the more reason to put effort into how to make a man feel loved!
And the really cool thing? Once he notices you showing him how you feel more often, he’ll return the favor. It’ll be one big happy love fest all around!
1. Tell Him
If you want the absolutely easiest way to learn how to make a man feel loved, there’s nothing simpler than saying “I love you.”
If you’re new in this relationship, consider whether you want to tell him you love him first or let him do it. Surprisingly (to me, anyway), men are three times more likely to say “I love you” first in a relationship, according to a recent study. You want to be relatively sure he feels the same if you plan on blurting out those three little words first.
But if you’ve been in this relationship a while, don’t let the space between “I love you’s” be further and further apart.
One caveat for this tip on how to make a man feel loved: there should be some balance between how often you say “I love you” and how often he wants to hear it. You may say it 100 times a day because you’d like to hear it from him that often. He, on the other hand, might be okay with hearing or saying it a few times a week. It’s worth a discussion so one of you doesn’t get annoyed with the other’s efforts.
2. Speak His Love Language
I promised we’d talk about Love Languages, so here you are! If you’re not familiar with Gary Chapman’s book, The Five Love Languages, I highly recommend you read it. Essentially, it says that there are five ways we express love:
- Acts of service
- Words of affirmation
- Receiving gifts
- Quality time
- Physical touch
Everyone has their preference (sometimes two or three from the list). It’s super important to know the love languages your partner speaks so that you can be fluent in his language. And again: keep your own preferences out of it! He may feel connected to you when you cuddle on the couch or spend time together, where you might feel loved when he buys you a small gift or tells you you’re beautiful. This is an example of where the Golden Rule doesn’t work because you might buy him gifts and compliment him and get…crickets.
Know which love languages light him up, and find ways to incorporate more actions into your everyday to show him you care.
3. Do Little Things That Show You’re Thinking of Him
Think of the last sweet thing your guy did for you. Maybe he brought you a sweater when you were shivering outside. How did it make you feel? Pretty wonderful, am I right?
It’s not hard at all to do small acts that make him feel loved.
Bring him his favorite coffee order on a stressful day at work.
Make his favorite meal.
Rub his shoulders.
Turn on the game, leave a beer on the coffee table, and a note saying, “Enjoy some YOU time! I’ll see you later! XO”
It’s important to do these little things out of the kindness of your heart, not so that you can keep score or expect him to do sweet things in return. It’s nice, of course, when he returns the favor, but expressing your love must be 100% selfless.
4. Listen When He Needs It
One of the best ways you can make a man feel loved is to just listen. Whether he’s rattling on about his workday (and secretly you’re bored, but you feign interest), opening up about something he’s vulnerable about, or raging about an awful day, the best thing you can do is simply listen actively.
Don’t try to offer a solution. He’s probably not looking for one. If he is, he will ask for your opinion or what you think he should do.
Just offer a sympathetic ear and maybe a shoulder to cry on or someone to vent to.
5. Show Your Appreciation
Do you realize what a positive impact your words can have on your partner? In a scientific study, people whose partners expressed gratitude perceived their partners to be more responsive. Six months later, they were more satisfied with their relationships.
It just goes to show: a little thanks can go a long way.
Say thank you for big and small acts. Don’t save your gratitude for the giant things, like him finally getting around to cleaning out the garage. Tell him thank you for opening the door for you, cooking dinner, or telling you that you’re beautiful.
Tell him what you appreciate about him (his kindness, his smile). I’ll bet that he will puff up like a proud peacock and work even harder to get your praise!
And I said this before, but: don’t show your appreciation to get it in return! Do it out of the genuine goodness of your heart, not because you want his praise in return.
6. Give Him 100% of Your Attention
I’ll confess: Jessica absolutely hates it when we’re out at dinner and I check my phone for any reason. It’s become an epidemic for many of us addicted to our phones, and yet scientists have discovered that we’re actually not happier when we interrupt a meal to check our phones. In fact, the opposite is true.
In a study, 300 people were asked to go to dinner with friends or loved ones. Half the group was asked to keep their phones on the table, while the other half was asked to put them away. Those who used their phones throughout the meal showed a notable dip in enjoyment during the meal.
So it’s not just your partner suffering when you check that recent Insta post on your phone! Put your phone away when you’re out (ask the same of him) and focus completely on him. It’s hard, I know. We’ve gotten to the point where our attention spans are just so short, but trust me: he’ll feel great knowing he’s got your undivided attention.
Whenever he’s talking to you (whether it’s about something major or just something that’s on his mind) actively listen when he talks. I’ve discussed the difference between listening to understand and listening to respond in other posts, but you should always focus on really absorbing what he’s saying, not thinking about what you’ll say next.
And if you can’t give him 100% of your attention, let him know. It happens. Maybe you’re distracted with your own stuff at the moment. It’s only fair to let him know that you’re there in body, but not in spirit, and ask if you can have that conversation another time when you’re better able to focus on him. That way, you don’t annoy him with your obvious lack of attention.
If you want to know how to make a man feel loved, see things through his eyes. Do the things that make him happy, not what makes you happy. And really, when you see how happy you’ve made him, that should make you happy anyway!
Acknowledge that you’re different from your boyfriend in unique ways, but ways that should be recognized when it comes to expressing your affection for him. He may love it when you hold his hand in public, even though you’re not big on PDA. He may want to whisper sweet nothings in your ear first thing in the morning…while you want to go back to sleep.
A solid relationship is one that’s got give and take. Not everything is for you. Some things in your relationship are for him. It should balance out in the end, so just focus on giving him exactly what he wants to make him feel secure and loved in this relationship. A good man will do the exact thing to you as well.
Frustrated because you don’t know exactly what he wants in terms of how to make a man feel loved? Download the Male Mind Map and find out the 7 things men desire deeply in a woman!