By Coach Todd Reed
Who knew that just a few little words could make all the difference in a relationship?
In my work with couples, I've found that repeating certain phrases is key to staying close and connected to the one you love most. Here are five magic phrases that help keep happy couples feeling crazy in love:
1. "WE CAN WORK IT OUT."
Notice the word "we" versus "I." Numerous studies have found a link between marital happiness and how often couples refer to themselves as "we." That's because seeing yourself as a team makes you more likely to cope well with the day-to-day problems that are inevitable in any long-term relationship. What's more, "we" lends a spirit of cooperation to your discussions -- and that not only results in fewer disagreements, but also arguments that get resolved more quickly.
2. "I HEAR WHAT YOU'RE SAYING."
If I had a penny for each time I've heard a client complain, "My partner never listens," I'd be a very wealthy man. We humans have a primal need to feel, both, heard and understood; this is especially true in romantic relationships. When you don't feel heard and understood, you both struggle to feel important, valued, or connected to one another. Notice that this phrase doesn't necessarily mean that you agree with what's being said. But, it does send a critical message that you're listening with an open mind. And when that happens, your significant other is far more likely to share his or her innermost thoughts and feelings with you, which, naturally, tightens your bond.
3. "I'M CRAZY ABOUT YOU!!"
Most of us think nice thoughts about our mates all the time, but all too often, we keep them to ourselves. The truth is, our significant others need to hear (again and again) how smart, charming, attractive and wonderful we think they are. In fact, constant reminders from the person whose opinion they value most (that'd be you!) keep your partner's self-confidence soaring, spirits high, and his/her connection to you closer than ever.
4. "WOW, THANK YOU!"
In the happiest relationships, couples make a point of acknowledging all the little things -- from his clearing the table or taking the kids to the park, to her picking up the dry cleaning or making your favorite meal. But the closest couples add an exclamation to their thanks. Adding a "Wow!" is like underlining your thanks or putting it in bold type, so you know for sure that your partner feels loved and appreciated. In fact, according to behavioral science expert Craig S. Davis, Ph.D., an exclamation actually registers differently on the cochlea -- the part of the inner ear that receives and analyzes sound -- so your partner literally perks up, listens, and better hears what's being said.
5. "GO FOR IT!"
This phrase brings the all-important "rah-rah" factor into your relationship. Though short and sweet, it speaks volumes whenever you're sharing thoughts, hopes, and dreams with one another by sending the message "I've got your back" loud and clear. In fact, a ton of research reveals that couples who serve as cheerleaders for one another are not only more optimistic about life and love, but are far more likely to live happily ever after.
This article originally appeared on YourTango.