Are things beginning to move to the next level?
By Lesli White
As couples, we express love through different actions. As individuals, we all have our favorite ways to show love and receive love. For some, expressing love comes easy and for others, it can be more difficult. Saying “I love you” to your partner is a huge step. It’s that moment in a relationship when the time comes to decide to take things to the next level, or to move on. Often, this is when people start considering their feelings for their partner and debating whether or not to break out the L-word. Many of us want to be hopelessly romantic but don’t always know how to express it in a way that feels right. A huge part of showing love is saying you care through your actions and the things you’re doing in the present moment may be indicating that you’re ready to say those three big, meaningful words. Just because it isn’t Valentine’s Day doesn’t mean you can’t show your partner some special attention now. Saying “I love you” and reflecting it through your actions will remind your special someone how much they mean to you. Here are seven signs you’re really ready to say “I love you.”
1. You Clear the Calendar
Life can get pretty hectic. Our daily schedule brings myriad options for tasks to complete, places to go and things to do. When you have an opposite schedule than your partner, spending time together can be especially difficult. One sign that you’re really ready to say “I love you” is when you begin clearing your calendar for your partner. This doesn’t mean dropping your daily tasks. This is setting out a specific time for the person you’re into. Create a list of fun and romantic things to do for the day or simply spend time at home together, relaxing and watching your favorite flicks. Sometimes, the best place to go is nowhere. Clear the calendar and do nothing for a change. Your loved one will value the fact that you are making time in your schedule to spend time together, no matter what.
2. You’ve Met Each Other’s Family and Friends
If you and your partner are introducing each other to the people they care about the most then that’s a sign you’re more than a crush. If you’re trying to determine whether or not you’re in a serious relationship, the indicators often revolve around family and friends. You can tell you’re serious about someone or that they’re serious about you when introduce friends and family and when you make a significant place for each other during holiday time, whether it’s Thanksgiving, Easter or Christmas. If you begin to go out of your way to include them in conversation, talk them up by telling everyone some of their goals and accomplishments and show affection regardless of who’s around, the signs may be point to love.
3. You Comfort Them When They’re Upset
We all have those days where we feel like nothing’s going right, but having a partner there to comfort us can completely turn things around. They make stressful situations easier to deal with and can even sometimes completely erase them from our minds. If just the sight of your boyfriend or girlfriend can lift your mood no matter what you’ve been through, then it might just be love. Being able to pick up on a person’s emotions is important in any kind of relationship, but is especially important in a romantic one. Like many aspects of relationships though, you’ll need to reciprocate this care for your partner as well.
4. You Always Want to Surprise Them
When you’re ready to say “I love you,” nothing is better than you being able to put a smile on their face through words and action. If you live in an area where there’s a beach, the mountains or some other scenic-setting, have your loved one get up early so that you can surprise them with a morning getaway. You can get up early enough to watch the sun rise together. You can also get tickets for a special event. Buy tickets for your special someone and their friend to go to the concert of their favorite band or “The Game”. An over-the-top gesture involving his or her people is not only insanely romantic, but also priceless. They will appreciate this unexpected gift.
5. You Pray For Your Partner
One big sign that you’re ready to say “I love you” is when you constantly pray for their health and well-being. The Bible tells us, “therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing” (1 Thessalonians 5:11). Use the Bible to guide your prayers for your loved one’s relationships. Pray that they can be the kind of example you know they want to be or pray that they can be the kind of friend you know they want to be. If you don’t know where to start, there are a number of resources online that can guide you in praying for your significant other. Be the kind of partner who is praying for your loved one and their extended family, friends, relationships at work and relationships at church.
6. You Listen to Their Every Word
Another big sign that you’re ready to say “I love you” is if you care about the things they say and want to improve the ways you listen to them. Of all the ways you can show your partner love and affirm them, listening can make the difference. Become an active listener in your partner’s life. Some of the ways you can do this is by asking open-ended questions. Questions that require only yes and no answers limit conversation and follow-up. When you ask open-ended questions, you can learn more about your partner’s day and how they are really feeling. You can also do a two day follow-up. If your partner told you about an issue that went on at work on Monday, make a note on your calendar to follow-up with him on Wednesday about the situation. It will mean the world to them that you remembered and you cared
7. You Know What You Want
It’s so important that you know what you want before starting over in a new relationship. It’s not just about what a new partner can offer you, but what you can also offer in a relationship. First, know your strengths and weaknesses. Recognizing and understanding our limitations enables us to work on them and find partners who will compliment us. This can be difficult because our strengths and weaknesses are often one and the same. For example, you can be demanding, in that you are constantly trying to push your partners to be the best they can be. This can be a weakness because it causes you to place heavy demands on partners which can lead to disappointment and resentment. Also, it’s very important that you know your worth. Far too often, we stay in relationships that aren’t gratifying because we don’t value ourselves.
Saying “I love you,” is one of the most common ways to show someone you care for them but it’s also a really big step in the relationship. You don’t need to wait until he or she tells you that he or she loves you. If you’re in love, you want to let the other person know. But you need to wait until it’s the right time. Be certain that what you have is love. You’ll know when you’re really in love. Listen to your heart.
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