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New Study Lists Romantic Gestures That Make People Feel Truly Loved

New Study Lists Romantic Gestures That Make People Feel Truly Loved
Updated 7 months ago

We'll be honest with you, we're absolutely not relationship experts. Not at all, but that's perfectly fine because researchers at Pennsylvania State University are. They released some research recently that may help those of us who are hopeless at this love thing. They've put together a sort of cheat sheet for us that includes the gestures that make most people feel truly loved.


Apparently, the things that really make us feel the love aren't even romantic. 

Researcher Saeideh Heshmati said:

We were curious about whether the majority of Americans could agree about what makes people feel loved on a daily basis, or if it was a more personal thing. Our results show that people do agree, and the top scenarios that came back weren't necessarily romantic. So it is possible for people to feel loved in simple, everyday scenarios. It doesn't have to be over-the-top gestures.

It turns out we're not all looking for seaside picnics under a full moon or being whisked away to Paris. Not that those things aren't lovely, but it turns out that isn't what makes most of us feel the warm fuzzies. 

So what does? Let's check back in with the researchers for that:

We found that behavioral actions -- rather than purely verbal expressions -- triggered more consensus as indicators of love. For example, more people agreed that a child snuggling with them was more loving than someone simply saying, 'I love you.'

Translation? Extreme was right:

So if you want to show someone you love them, it's better to show with actions than words. Got it. The research had more to tell us, though. 

Given possible scenarios, here are the ones people agreed made them feel loved:

  1. Someone shows compassion toward them in difficult times.
  2. A child snuggles up to them.
  3. Their pets are happy to see them.
  4. They get a compliment from a stranger.
  5. The sun is shining.
  6. They feel close to nature.

Truth. It's almost impossible to feel bad with snuggles, a wagging tail, and a kind word.

The study also acknowledged that it's possible to take these things too far. Wanting to spend time with your partner is sweet, but wanting to spend all of your time with your partner is seen as possessive and may drive that partner away. In fact, wanting to spend too much time together was one of the things people said made them feel unhappy. Of course, it's up to each couple to determine what is "too much time." Checking on a partner's whereabouts and offering unsolicited advice were two other things that came up in this category. Remember, too much can turn love sour. 

The good news is that lots of you knew this stuff already.

It's not all about movie-style stuff. There have to be smaller things, too. Hollywood love isn't what most of us want. 

Dan's figured things out:

There you go. You heard it from the experts. If you want to make someone feel really loved, balance the movie magic with practical magic.