When we want to show someone we care, we often use food to do so – by making a romantic dinner, or buying chocolates, right?

It’s easy to see why. Food and love are two of our basic needs as humans. Preparing food and eating together creates intimacy. And traditions like sweet goodies connect us to cultural reinforcements.

But have you ever wondered how to express love, appreciation, or a sense of celebration in ways that don’t involve food or drink?

I did! So, I put some thought into it and came up with this list of ideas to get you thinking.

  1. Give your time and attention. This works in any relationship, whether it’s with a significant other, friend or relative. There’s no better way to show we care than to be fully present with someone, listening, laughing, and showing support.
  2. Make or buy a gift that has a personal meaning to you. What could be more special than an original piece of work you made? Or, if that’s not in your wheelhouse, shop for a thoughtful gift that expresses your emotion and underscores the bond you feel with this person.
  3. Special experiences. Does your loved on have a bucket list? Or maybe the idea of a perfect day? Find out and make it happen.
  4. Flowers or jewelry. 
  5. Get physical. Yes, that can mean in the bedroom. But why not work out together, go on a hike, or get a couples massage, as well?

Now, let me be clear: There is NOTHING wrong with a sweet indulgence, either giving or receiving. So, enjoy that chocolate or glass of red wine.

But think beyond – live and LOVE beyond – what we can put in our mouths.

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