If You Like Someone, Say It. But Mean it.

I did a bad thing. I slacked off on writing this week. Then again maybe I am being a little to harsh on myself because I’m actually an Analyst. So writing is my hobby and my passion. If I could make a living off it… I totally would. However,  that’s not the point of this post at all. I actually have a topic I wanted to bring up and it is a little different.

I wanted to talk about attraction today. For some odd reason, it crossed my mind. And you know often times we do not give any thought to the things we take for granted.  Remember I like to sweat the small things? But I was reading a reddit post not too long a go and asking What Was The Most Memorable Compliment You’ve Ever Received? reading the comments and the feelings of the users it got me thinking about something.

Why don’t we talk more about complimenting people? Specifically about the importance of it. I mean let’s think about this for a minute. Why wouldn’t you want to compliment someone? In a research study in the Inquiries Journal Olga Yatsenko dives into this topic. To explore what happens to both genders when they’re complimented on their beauty. What Yatsenko finds out and to me it is no surprise, is that  “[…] compliments raise self-perceived attractiveness in all individuals, they do so uniformly across gender lines, and that there is no difference between the self-perceived attractiveness scores between males and females.” In essence we all love compliments about how we look, and it makes us feel good.

And if you think I’m cherry picking and you  want something more hardcore look at the research study titled Social Rewards Enhance Offline Improvements in Motor Skill. It is a mouthful but important to what I am getting at. On the other side of receiving praise and compliments what the researchers of the study discovered is that as the study participants received praise or compliments their performance improved. So you see compliments do wonderful things for the human brain. They help us with image and can even help us do better work. And to be honest it is something we need…but there’s more to it.

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Sweat the Small Things, Seriously….

There is something I don’t believe in. Let me rephrase that. There are things I do not believe apply to all situations. And I am sure you have heard it plenty of times in your life. And that is don’t sweat the small things. It is interesting to me because it is telling us to overlook the things that we should be overlooking. While yes, there is warrant in that. However, I think when it comes to love and relationships we should not. We in fact should sweat the small things.

Often when we think of love or dating or personal relationships. Things come to mind such as these grand gestures that in a way show our devotion or love for another person. And on the other hand, there are small things we tend to think to overlook such as poor grammar when speaking or a quirk that may drive us nuts about another person. And I think that’s where we trip up and lose sight of something incredibly important about our futures or the future of these relationships. And that’s what I am aiming to tackle today. So, I’ll break this into two parts the negative things and the positive that we need to think about.

Not taking things Seriously

People in the completeness are deep and rich individuals. We all have our vices, habits, desires, and things we enjoy. Some are quite large and that’s part of who we are. They tend to shine bright when we’re dating and when we’re with other people. But what if I told you, I have a terrible habit of picking my nails while nervous. Or I tend to say “So” a lot at the beginning of a sentence because I’m extremely nervous. I also tend to leave glasses around and forget to put them in the sink. To some they may be completely annoying. But others would say these small things should be overlooked because they may mean nothing. But I don’t agree with that at all.

Take this for example, there has been a dozen are so research studies done on texting and dating. I’m using this example because texting at its core is something we all do. But what if I told you that people are completely turned off by poor grammar and spelling? When think about it …it is insignificant but people place little value at times on it. This small message of “Hey, haw r u?” is it not bother some?  Zoosk and a few other places have done research on this and found out it does bother people. But why? I argue it shows laziness and that the person doesn’t want to take the initiative to go the extra step to send a decent message. Or it could show a lack of intelligence? It can be many things. Regardless, it is a big problem. I will say to me personally, someone who goes out of their way to correct it is aware of what they’re doing.

However, this leaves me to consider more than just text messages. What about the other things? Maybe it is your spouse and they leave the dishes in the sink? How about the fact he can leaves his socks everywhere? Or maybe you just can’t stand that quirk of every-time you ask a question, the person apologises? (I personally have a problem with using the British spellings of certain words. If you haven’t noticed.) All these small things. Well they are not that small after all. They can and could lead to serious problems. Let me throw a small curve ball at you. It’s called a red flag.

Yes. I am now arming these small annoyance or things in a relationship you’re seeing. They are truly red flags. But not even in the common sense. These are red flags to you these are personal things that you are not okay with. And though people may say they’re small. You should sweat them. You should question them. You should look at them and think. Is this what I want? Is this okay with me? Am I okay with this for the rest of my life? Because if he can’t even take the time to put his laundry in the hamper. Can you count on him to take the time to comfort you when you’ve had a rough day? I mean I know I may be over exaggerating but it is something that needs serious consideration. You must get to know someone. And then you will truly know. If these things are truly small or an ugly beast waiting to rear, it’s not so subtle head.

Psychologist Jennifer Kromberg, writes about red flags. However, there is one point to me that stick out especially in relation to the small things when she says,

If something strikes you as off, then chances are something is off. I know you’ll want to interview all your friends, twisting and turning your odd feeling in every direction in hopes of finding reassurance that you’re overreacting. And maybe you are! But don’t write yourself off so quickly. If something feels not right, you don’t have to end things on the spot, and maybe the oddness is something you can learn to live with.  But, don’t underestimate your intuition. You know more than you think you know.

 

And this is the point of it all. When you think of those things that are so bothersome about someone. You know the truth of if it is a problem or not. If it seems off and it may be insignificant. Think about it. Trust your feelings. After all you’re going to have put up with this person for the rest of your life if they’re in it for that long. All I am saying is when people say don’t sweat the small things. Think about the implications of it. Think about how it makes you feel and if it indeed is a problem. And don’t forget to trust yourself.

 

You Don’t Have to Move Mountains

On the other hand, there is the idea about love is walking a million miles. And reaching the person you love. And telling them about some grand journey you took. Then you have this idea that you must plan this grand surprise dinner. Roses and fine wine set out. A perfectly selected playlist. All the sappy love songs you choose to remind the person you love them. And don’t take this for me being cynical. Or me not liking it. I do, but I am saying there’s more to love and relationships than going over the top to show someone your feelings.

We often lose sight of the small gestures the ones that show us the person cares and may not have been able to take the time to do something grand. Instead they’re showing you it in a simple. But sweet way. And those are the exact gestures I am talking about. A simple. Small gestures just that go a long way. You should consider that these things are important to a relationship. Sometimes it may seem silly or futile but they mean so much. For example, (I’m going to put my parents on notice for this) every day I lived at home as a child and even after college. I noticed something my father tried to do every day.  And that was kiss my mother good bye for work. Now I know I know, you’re saying a lot of people do it. But that’s the exact point of it. It’s that a small gesture of just kissing someone good bye. It means a lot. It means I’m thinking about you, I care about you. And you don’t have to even say a word.

A friend, for example may have had a bad day at work. And you could take them out on the town or maybe even invite them over for dinner. But who knows if that’s what they really need. Instead, you shoot a text off saying Hey. I’m here for you.  And that is a big deal. Because you’re saying I’m care about you and I want you to know I got your back. It is not a large gesture. But it still shows how important someone is to you. And that’s what small gestures should do. They should be the simplest way of showing the importance of another person. So, we should be sweating them…. well doing them.

When’s the last time you just told someone how wonderful you thought they were? Or when was the last time you took the time to call someone and ask them how their day was? These low effort high impact things are so small. But so, important to maintaining both romantic and personal relationships. Telling someone how wonderful their work is.  It is just taking a few moments to recognise someone. A hug for a friend haven’t seen in a while. Caressing a loved one at random and saying You make me happy. Seriously, it can be as small as text or Facebook message. But it’s the gesture and weight it carries. Think about it, and why not try it right now? Make someone’s day.

 

I think we often lose sight of the small things. Be it the negative things that warn us of something bigger to come. Or the small things that tell someone how important they are. In love and in relationships we need these things. We need to sweat them. We must do what we can, and it doesn’t have to be big. And we need to look at things and question them no matter the size. So, when someone tells us. Don’t sweat the small things. Consider that bees, are so so small. But help keep the eco-system in balance. The world wouldn’t be the same without them.