Not everyone has the ability to be gentle to others all the time. Some people are used to being tough that they find it hard to show kindness to others. (Yes, gentleness and kindness go together)
Moreover, there are those who think of being gentle as a weakness. They are afraid to show gentleness, thinking they might get taken advantage of.
However, gentleness plays an important role in relationships. If a couple would treat each other harshly and insensitively, then they would not last.
If you are in the process of learning how to be gentle in a relationship, then you can learn from these simple ways:
1. Smile often.
A genuine smile can make anyone comfortable with you. Therefore, if you want to lighten the atmosphere in your relationship, smile often. It can make your partner feel that you are happy to have him/her around.
2. Do not impose your will.
You can make suggestions but never force what you want on your partner or spouse. Everyone has free will, and you have to respect that.
3. Listen willingly.
When your partner is pouring out sentiments, do not hush him/her off. Instead, show him/her that you are eager to listen, especially if it is about your relationship.
4. Be polite.
Being polite is another characteristic of gentleness. Be mindful of your manners and words to avoid being rude. This will make your partner feel that you honor him/her.
5. Avoid being impatient.
Impatience can lead to a hot temper. To avoid this, be more understanding of your partner or spouse. You can also divert your attention to something else. For instance, if s/he were late for your appointment, stop checking the time. Instead, you could go window shopping or read online news.
6. Help or assist whenever you can.
Offering help or assistance is another way of showing gentleness. Small acts, like passing the food across the table or volunteering to wash the dishes, can bring a big impact on your relationship.
7. Cheerfully serve.
Serving your partner is among the kindest acts you can do for him/her. You can cook his/her favorite dish or simply make coffee. Whatever you do, if done cheerfully, will be surely heartwarming.
8. Choose your words carefully.
A gentle person is sensitive to the feelings of others. Thus, whenever you are talking to your partner or spouse, be careful not to use aggressive words. This is most applicable whenever you are arguing over something.
ALSO READ: 10 Ways to Stop Arguing in a Relationship
9. Give constructive criticisms.
For sure, there are times when you get impatient with your partner’s shortcomings. To avoid blurting out insensitive remarks, choose to turn your comments into constructive criticisms. Avoid pointing fingers and highlighting his/her mistakes. Just give statements that can help him/her improve.
10. Use the sandwich principle.
Aside from constructive criticisms, the sandwich principle can be effective in pointing out your partner’s failures without being offensive. The sandwich principle involves stating the negative comment in between two positive remarks.
11. Do not raise your voice.
No matter how angry you are, control the tone, pitch, and volume of your voice. Maintain a conversational voice when talking to your partner. In short, do not yell at your partner.
12. Be quiet or walk away.
If you cannot control yourself from raising your voice or saying hurtful words, choose to withdraw. You can either choose to be silent or just walk away from the scene. Once you have cooled down, talk with your partner quietly to resolve the issue.
13. Say “thank you” often.
Be more appreciative of your partner or spouse. Whenever s/he does anything for you, thank him/her generously. Make “thank you” a habitual expression in your relationship, along with “I love you”.
14. Always say “please” when asking a favor.
Whenever you need your partner’s help, do not forget the magic word—“please”. Never boss your partner or spouse around. Instead, let him/her willingly do what you ask. Using “please” acknowledges your partner’s freedom to help or not—and that you appreciate it whenever s/he does.
15. Be willing to say “sorry”.
If you know you have done something that has hurt your partner or spouse, humbly apologize. This shows that you care about what s/he feels, and you do not like hurting him/her.
On the contrary, if it is you who get hurt or offended, forgive without hesitation. Why stay angry and hating if you want to keep the relationship? Of course, this does not mean you tolerate any wrong action. It only shows your love for the person is greater than any mistake.
17. Resist overfamiliarity.
Avoid being overfamiliar with your partner or spouse. Overfamiliarity makes you less conscious of your behavior around him/her. For this reason, you sometimes forget to treat your partner gently.
18. Be thoughtful.
Another way to show gentleness is by being thoughtful. Do not forget important events in your relationship, such as your anniversary or the birthday of your partner. Other examples include preparing lunch for your partner and reminding him/her to take vitamins.
19. Ask for suggestions or opinions.
Gentle people do not dominate others, even if they can. No matter how passive your partner or spouse is, always take time to include him/her in decision-making. Ask for his/her ideas before deciding on anything. Even in simple conversations, you should hear your partner’s thoughts out.
20. Never display force when angry.
No matter how angry you get, never lose control. It is better to run away from the situation than to punch the wall, break glasses, or throw plates. You may not hurt your partner physically, but violent acts like these can leave psychological traumas.
Be Gentle for Yourself
Practicing gentleness will not only benefit your relationship. In fact, you will gain more from it. Having a gentle or kind spirit will save you from unnecessary guilts caused by hurting others.
Moreover, remember to be gentle to yourself despite your past failures. In this harsh world, you need someone who will always stay kind to you, especially when you are at your worst. If you could not find that someone in anyone you know, at least you have yourself.