Some couples say "I love you" every hour, on the hour (or, if you’re like my husband and I, every other minute.) Then there are those who save that phrase for special moments, and like anniversary or holiday. Either way, as long as the meaning behind them stays true, those three little words can have a huge impact. But in any relationship, there has to be more than uttering a sweet sentiment. In order to keep the love strong and alive, you have to find ways to say "I love you" without actually saying "I love you.”

Each partnership has its own ways of doing this, and each person has their own quirky ways to give and show love. There are some universal ways to show your partner you love them, however, that will be met with happiness by most people.

Finding the most powerful ways to show love without verbalizing it is a secret ingredient to a great relationship. Words will start to ring hollow – no matter how sincere in the moment – if you don't feel the follow-up actions. Feeling loved is more important than being told you are loved. So in an effort to show someone you love them, try one of these verbal-less ways to say, “I love you.”

1. Listen With Your Body, Mind, And Heart

The art of listening is difficult to master in the modern world. Listening to your loved one intensely and attentively isn't going to be possible all the time. But it is something you can do when your partner needs it most; when they have had a terrible day, are dealing with insecurity, or sharing something intimate. Shift your body positioning toward them, keep your eyes on their face and train your mind and heart to truly focus on what your partner is sharing with you. The result is often a deeper connection between the two of you.

2. Buy Them A Thoughtful Gift Just Because

Sometimes my husband comes home with Milk Duds and champagne, just because. It's a simple, small gesture, but it makes me feel so happy. It shows he's been thinking about me, and it's a reminder that he knows me better than anyone.

3. Give Into Public Displays Of Affection

PDA isn't for everyone, but it's wonderful when your partner physically shows their love with a simple arm around your shoulder or hand-holding. Physical affection is important outside of the bedroom, too, indicating a desire to be close even when sex isn't involved.

4. Write A Love Letter

The lost art of love letter writing can be a sweepingly romantic. I still have some of the letters my husband has written me over the years, in cards or on lined paper, in long paragraphs or short bursts, and they always make me smile.

5. Give A Massage

Everyone gets tired, so giving your partner a massage is especially thoughtful. Your partner might be exhausted after a long day of work, but when they take the time to massage away your stress, it absolutely feels like love.

6. Take Care Of Your Sick SO

Having a partner take care of you when you're sick is one of the most comforting acts of love. Holding their hair while they puke, bringing them their favorite drink, setting up the bed with heating pads are all little ways to show you love them while nursing them back to health.

7. Allow Your SO To Fail Without Feedback

Over the last five years of my relationship with my husband, one of the most important things we have both done for each other is to allow the other to fail without feedback. Of course, we aren't autobots, and it's reflexive to want to share your feedback with your love when they fall down. But sometimes, the best, most loving and most helpful thing you can do is to reflect with them. Listen supportively, offer unconditional love, and show confidence that they will succeed.

8. Make Out

It's easy to forget the fun of making out with someone. It can get lost in the hustle of life or when you're trying to rush through sex. So grab your partner for a surprise make-out session and feel the love.

9. Be Understanding

Some of the most vulnerable moments I've had with my husband have been when we expect each other to be frustrated or dissapointed, and instead the other person is kind and understanding. It's heart-melting. Next time one of your partner's problematic issues crops up (we all have them), let them know it's no big deal. This is an easy, meaningful way to say "I love you" without actually saying a word.

Images: Takazart/Pixabay; Giphy (9)