I sit in the train, look outside the window, everything turned white during the night. The first snow this winter. Luckily I am inside and the heater in the train is working very well. I am very grateful for this, as I am warm and not have to freeze outside in the cold. I can just sit back and relax, look outside, enjoy the cozy feeling I get when I see the world covered silenty under a blanket of snow.
On the chair next to me is a boy, across him sits his girlfriend. They joined the train a little while ago. They enjoyed their lunch together in a way couples do who just started dating: feeding each other. Cute, right? 😀
After the “I feed you, you feed me” experience, it is back to normal: both are checking their phones. Which is, let us be honest here, a natural thing to do nowadays.
Reaching his hand towards her
I read in my book when I notice that he turns towards the direction of his girlfriend, reaching his hand towards her, in an open position. This gesture we all know, it means: give me your hand. Or: hold me, I want to feel connected to you. This gesture is actually a very small thing, taking very little effort, and still can mean so much.
You can Interpret this gesture in many different ways. Here are some examples of Interpretation: connections, longing for touch, holding & supporting each other. Or whatever it is holding hands means to you.
John Gottmann, a professional when it comes to how to make marriages work, refers to these small gestures as bids for connection. See his very own words about it:
“A bid is any attempt from one partner to another for attention, affirmation, affection, or any other positive connection. Bids show up in simple ways, a smile or wink, and more complex ways, like a request for advice or help. In general, women make more bids than men, but in the healthiest relationships, both partners are comfortable making all kinds of bids.”
I think this is something very simple everybody can include in their relationship to make it a bit better. Something everybody can do to make you and your partner feel a bit more seen, loved, appreciated.
Maybe you’re a natural, and you already notice and answer these bids to your partner, then you are very lucky I would say 🙂 and your partner is also very lucky of course having you in his or her life.
Maybe you understand …
Wait. The couple is kissing now. See?! She answered his bid, took his hand. Now they are kissing , having a real good time so to see…
Okay, where were we? Oh, right. So, maybe you understand the logic behind the bids for connection, but you don’t know how to deal with it in practice. Okay it is not that difficult, I think there are three important steps to take:
1) look for bids by your partner:
Check if and when and in what way bids are coming from your partner. You could just observe for a few days. You check on the interaction you two have. Are you in the supermarkt together, and he/she is taking your hand? Is there a sigh coming out of his/her mouth after a long day at work? Is there a quick message with the question for your help with something? Just try to see those interactions coming from your loved one.
2) answer the bids:
answer the bids coming from your partner in an appropriate way. Don’t exaggerate here, this is not fruitful. Just see what he/she needs and fulfill this need accordingly if you are capable of doing so. If you are not 100% sure about the bid or request, you can just ask what he/she needs right now from you or how you can help at the moment.
Check what happens next. Do you enjoy it? Does your partner enjoy it? Is there gratitude coming from the look of your partners face, or is he / she even saying thank you?
How do you feel about it? Do you feel better than before fulfilling the bid? Do you feel more connected, more loved, more appreciated? Do you think it was a good idea answering your partners bid?
Well, so that is the power of the bids. The power of the “little things”, that matter. I myself also made the experience that “little things often”, and answering your partners bids is a very powerful tool when it comes to how to perpetually grow and improve your relationship and your love life. It creates an atmosphere of love, support, connection and a million other positive things within your love relationship.
So I know how powerful it is, and I can really recommend it. Just try it and you will see yourself 😉
And why not invest a little bit, often in your life? Let’s be honest, if you invest in your love life, you will automatically experience improvement there. Growth, strength, positivity, power of connection and love. This will spatter other areas of your life as well. For sure.
Love is the answer,