5 Tiny Things People In The Best Relationships Do For Each Other Every Single Day

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man in profile with a woman kissing his cheek

Almost everyone dreams of having one of those truly great relationships, the kind that thrives and lasts a lifetime. But few know how to make it happen.

Gifts? Flowers? Vacations? Back rubs? There are so many options, but they can be expensive and feel a bit overwhelming. Why does having to keep your relationship strong require so much time and effort?

Big gestures are nice (and definitely recommended at times), but there are everyday things that you can do to keep your relationship or marriage thriving. Little things that make a huge difference in whether your marriage (now or later) is a happy one.

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Here are 5 of those tiny-but-effective ways to build a truly great relationship.

1. Make eye contact when your partner talks to you. 

When you go to work in the morning and you meet co-workers, do you look them in the eye and wish them a good morning? When you are ordering coffee do your look your barista in the eye and thank them for their service. Of course, you do!

So, if you naturally use eye contact as a source of connection in your life, why wouldn’t you use it in your relationship?

I can’t tell you how many couples I have worked with, ones who are finding themselves disconnected from each other, no longer look each other in the eye. Instead, they occupy themselves with something suddenly super important if their partner walks in the room. They keep their eye on the TV when the other says goodnight. They leave in the morning with a quick peck on the cheek, moving towards the door with haste.

It is literally impossible to remain connected to someone if you don’t look them in the eye. Human beings thrive on eye to eye contact and not having it can only cause chaos in a marriage.

So, when you walk in the house tonight, look your spouse in the eye and say hello. Connect with them in a way that lets them know that you care.

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2. Hug them often & with your heart.

It seems to trivial but hugging your spouse every day can literally be the thing that will keep your relationship or marriage strong, maybe more than anything else.

Hugs do two things, both of which are important for a marriage that thrives.

Hugs use physical contact to convey caring. Think about how good it feels to get a hug from anyone. Pretty good right? And now imagine a hug from the person you love. Pretty amazing right?

A 10 second hug leads to the production of oxcytocin, the feel-good chemical that enhances happiness and fights depression. They say a 10 second hug, once a day, can deepen a couple’s connection in a big way.

Also, hugs are great stress relievers. Holding someone in a firm hug for 20 seconds has been proven to release stress. What a gift that would be – to hug your person and make them feel less stressed out in this stressful world.

So, if you aren’t doing it regularly, hug your person. Its quick and cheap and effective!

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3. Pay attention and make mental notes.

I know so many women who say to me, “Why can’t he just know what I want. Why do I always have to tell him?’ If you are a woman, I am guessing you are saying "yes!" If you are a guy, I am guessing you are saying "Ugh!"

I am afraid that I have to agree with the guys. Women are very good at tuning into each other’s needs but it’s harder for men to do so. As a result, a distance can grow between a man and a woman because opportunities to make each other happy are being missed.

I would encourage both men and women to pay attention to their partner. I would encourage them to note their likes and their dislikes, what makes them happy and sad, what are the things that they enjoy doing, and being done to them.

I would also encourage both husband and wife to tell their person what they need if they aren’t getting it. There is no reason to sulk and get resentful when there is a person right there who wants to give you what you want. I know you might want them to guess but, if they don’t, tell them

A person who pays attention is a person who will make their partner feel loved in a big way. Yes, you might not be able to anticipate your person’s every need but if you pay attention you will be able to come pretty darn close.

RELATED: 5 Things Husbands Need To Hear Their Wives Say At Least Once Per Month

4. Do the little things they love, often.

You know the saying ‘it’s the small things that make the difference?’ Take this phrase to heart, because it’s true. Small gestures can keep your relationship healthy and humming along. 

What do I mean by small things? I mean bringing your lady flowers. I mean thanking him for helping you with a task. I mean asking your guy to go for a walk. I mean making a cake for their birthday. Dropping them a random text during the day.

It’s the little things, doing the things that make life a little less dreary and the things that make your person know that you are thinking of them, that will keep your relationship healthy and happy.

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5. Make the time. 

One of things that we are lacking most in this modern world is time. Because we are lacking time, for some crazy reason, what goes to the bottom of the priority list is relationships.

We willingly give our time to work and to children and to hobbies but we often take our relationships for granted and don’t give them the time they deserve.

So, how do you carve out time in this crazy world?

My ex and I always went to bed together. Always. Even when our marriage was falling apart. We would just read side by side and then turn off the light but the time was very intimate and cozy.

Another idea would be getting up early one morning a week for coffee and conversation. Or having a quick drink after work, before the chaos of homework and dinner kicks in. Or taking a walk together. Or getting a sitter and actually going on a date.

Making time seems difficult but, really it isn’t. All you have to do is be aware that it’s important to do so and to make it happen. You can work one half hour less or skip a bike riding day and make your relationship healthier, just like that!

RELATED: 6 Ways Great Husbands Make Their Wives Feel Loved & Protected

Doing things to make it so that you have a happy and fulfilling relationship doesn’t have to be expensive or time consuming.

It’s the everyday things that can make a huge difference in the health of a relationships, the everyday things that can be forgotten in the midst of the chaos of the modern world.

So, make an effort to make eye contact with your person, maybe before or after a hug.

Pay attention to what they might want and need and do small gestures to let them know you are paying attention. And make each other a priority and make time. I mean, you do love each other and time spent together isn’t that much of a sacrifice, is it?

Having a healthy marriage is the #1 goal for most people — and yet so many marriages and relationships are unhealthy. Try some of these everyday things and see the health of your relationship bloom.

You can do it!

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Mitzi Bockmann is an NYC-based, certified life and love coach. She helps people find, and keep, love in this crazy world in which we live. Check out her website or reach out via email.