Expressing appreciation for your girl can improve your relationship. Failing to appreciate her can kill it. Gals think and behave differently from guys, according to relationship teacher Gary Smalley in his "Hidden Keys to Loving Relationships" curriculum. Her need for relationship and emotional connection are fed when you appreciate who she is and her unique contributions to your relationship. (Ref 1 p2)
What She Does
Express appreciation for the many things your girl does for you. Say, “I appreciate the way you explained the math problem so I could understand it” or “I couldn’t have made it work on time if you hadn’t given me a lift.” Be specific about what you appreciate, without faking it. If she goes out of her way to do something for you, let her know you appreciate her actions and the way you benefited.
Who She Is
Admire things about her, such as what she wears, the way she styles her hair, her intelligence or her ability to fit in anywhere, suggest relationship researcher John Gray, Ph.D., in "What Your Mother Couldn’t Tell You and Your Father Didn’t Know." (Ref 2,p 40-42) Express your respect for her uniqueness or competency, such as “I know you will make a super impression on the class. You are very smart.” Tell her she looks fabulous when you know she took extra time to look good for your date or got a new dress before a special event, such as the prom.
What She Needs
Your girl needs to know that she is number one in your life and that you care for her, according to psychotherapist Richard Drobnick in “The Emotional Differences Between Men and Women” on the YourTango website. That kind of appreciation lets her know she is unique in your life. Tell her that you can’t imagine any other girl in your life or that she inspires you to give her your very best because she gives you her best. (Ref 4) Listen to her so she knows that you appreciate what she has to say.
The Correct Manner
Give her your full attention when expressing your feelings for her. Stand or sit where you are face-to-face and let her know how she makes you feel, such as, "No one makes me feel as loved and special as you do, and I appreciate that." Gray suggests that physical touch can also help reinforce your message, such as holding her hand or laying a gentle hand on her arm. (Ref 2 p149-151) Give her a hug or a kiss with your appreciative words.
- Hidden Keys to Loving Relationships; Gary Smalley
- What Your Mother Couldn’t Tell You and Your Father Didn’t Know; John Gray, Ph.D.
- YourTango: The Emotional Differences Between Men and Women – Part One
- Plustwentyseven/Digital Vision/Getty Images