How can I show more emotions to my partner?

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

Why can’t they feel it?

Is your partner constantly complaining that you don’t show how you feel even though you think you are?

Do you complain that your partner isn’t showing enough emotions?
This is a common problem that many people go through and in many cases it leads to the termination of the relationship.

Not having the ability to show emotions well certainly doesn’t mean that they don’t have them, but in order to truly fix this you need to know why this problem actually happens and what to do about it.

Illusion of transparency

Most people have an illusion that our emotions are transparent and are very obvious when in fact this belief is very much overrated.

Due to this belief, many people fear public speaking for example because they are worried that other people can clearly see how worried they are. In reality, what you are feeling is not that obvious to people and this idea alone had been proven by many studies.

In one study in which people gave speeches in front of an audience, they asked the speakers to rate their own nervousness which was compared with the audience ratings. Of course the results again showed how people tend to overrate their own nervousness against how they actually appeared to others. (see also Public speaking tips)

This thought alone also affects the self confidence levels that people have in communication, since fear is the biggest obstacle to making an impression. Many people are constantly afraid that people have noticed that they were uncomfortable or worried, when most of the time they don’t even notice it and when they do it doesn’t appear the way we rated it in our heads.

Are people faking emotions?

In reality, when you are with your partner you’d be surprised to know that what you think is obvious, is not really very obvious most of the time. This brings us to a very important question; does this mean that the people who show emotions well are all faking it?

Not at all. People who express themselves well have learned this skill through their experience of communicating with people and have learned its importance. The reason most people pick up the importance of showing how they feel is that body language and tone of voice represent almost 93% of communication between people.

Showing their emotions has become an unconscious skill that they do without even thinking about it, and so they are now displaying what they really feel. This however also explains why some people who lie, can pull it off well and be believed a lot of the time.

So when it comes to showing emotions to your partner, you actually have to put a little effort for them to see what you feel.

How do I show them how I feel?

Rather than going through all the details of endless different body language postures that you can use, I will show you the ideology behind how you can always figure it out for yourself.

Now that you are aware of the fact that they don’t always see what you feel, make a decision of making it a habit to show what you feel every time you feel something warm or positive toward your partner. Second try to do more of the following whenever you experience emotions; longer eye contact, smile, tender touches and pauses.

Longer eye contact and tender touches produce the release of oxytocin chemicals in your brains making you experience more love emotions together. (see also How can i love my husband again)

Smiling is a very powerful way to show emotions whenever you want to project it because it releases endorphins which makes you both experience happiness and positive emotions.
These simple acts actually make a huge difference and by time they will increase the activity in the area responsible for emotional intelligence in your brain and you will be able to display emotions to your partner effortlessly.

In my book How to have a healthy relationship I mentioned that you need to pause a little when you display emotions. This means don’t take the advice above and do it for a quick second and then let go. When you display emotions, pause for a couple of seconds to make sure you emphasize what you’re feeling and to give yourselves time to experience the release of chemicals responsible for making you happy and more in love.

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