I have made it very obvious to my significant other how much I love it when he texts or does “little things” for me. even though he rarely does it, I’ve let him know that just a simple email or text can make my day.
He says that all he wants to do is make me happy, so I don’t understand why he doesn’t even make the effort to do the things he knows I like! When I know he likes something, I do it. I want to tell him this bothers me, but I don’t want him to do it just because I “asked him to,” basically ruining it.
Plus, I feel like he should WANT to do things that make me happy anyway. What gives?
This is something that I hear all the time from women in their relationships.
You want him to do X, but if you tell him to do X it ruins it because then he would be doing it because you told him to and not because his emotions/love for you told him to.
Then you say: He should know to do it, I shouldn’t have to tell him.
And you also say: When he does what I like, I tell him how much I like it.
There’s a reason that I am restating this…
So first off, you want him to do “the little things” because they make you feel amazing when he does them.
Do you know why they make you feel amazing? They feel amazing because he’s the type of man that has more going for himself than just trying to please you constantly. His attention is valuable because he doesn’t just give it away freely and carelessly. If he did, it wouldn’t have as much value.
People tend to put value on that which is rare and that which they have to work for- not just in relationships but in all aspects of life. And we don’t value what is just handed to us nearly as much.
Think about it: If he was some guy who was obsessed with trying to please you constantly in every way, you would think he was a pushover. You would take the behavior for granted and you wouldn’t place much value on it.
You wouldn’t be able to respect him or trust his strength because everything he was doing is based on trying to “win you over”, get your approval or please you.
Before I go any further, you should take a moment to be grateful that you are with a man that has enough of a life and enough security in his value that he doesn’t need to try and please you all the time. Appreciate that he’s the type of guy that he is.
Now, here’s a major, major point in terms of understanding men: In the context of relationships, men do not think in terms of “little things”. Women think in terms of little things.
I’m not saying that I don’t appreciate the little things, but I would much rather have a single mind-blowing, unforgettable experience with the girl I’m with rather than 100 “little things”. To use an analogy: one amazing time with a woman could equal 10,000 “points”, whereas 100 little things might only equal 10 points.
This should be a relief to you since it means that you could have a tremendous positive impact on your relationship just with one night of making your guy feel amazing instead of spending countless hours doing “little things”.
Here’s the problem: In the same way that women will do “little things” for guys and then be confused and frustrated when the guy isn’t smitten by all the little things she’s done for him (in the way a woman would be), guys think that one grand gesture will make up for months of neglecting “little things”.
I’ve been guilty of this. I’ve had plenty of times where I’ve let work and life in general consume all my time and attention and neglect my relationship. Even a great date, filled with all sorts of grand things can’t repair all the “little moments” of neglect throughout the month.
In other words, I’m trying to give her a 10,000 point night, but it actually goes down in the “relationship books” as just 1 point. Meanwhile, if I were more conscious, I would have done 100 little things during the month and been 100 points ahead.
Now I realize that I’m putting this in “relationship nerd” terms, but I’m trying to get across the difference between the genders so that you can understanding him better, appreciate the differences and communicate to him in an effective way.
So here’s the solution: If you want to get more of the little things, you should reward him for the good behavior.
Thing is, just saying ‘thank you’ doesn’t have the same emotional impact as doing something that feels as good to him as he makes you feel when he