Most people implicitly understand that love, while a decidedly overwhelming and satisfying feeling to experience, is much more than a tingling sensation that occurs when you’re around the object of your desire. While loving a partner and/or children is usually born out of that tingling, it’s the daily and ongoing practice of love that actually impacts lives in such a way that the ones loved feel and believe in that love.
7 Pragmatic Ways to Love Your Family
While roses, kind words, and affection are all fantastic ways to show love to one another, there are plenty of pragmatic ways to put love into action as well. Here are seven pragmatic ways to love your family that will impact them in a positive way that reaches far beyond feeling.


Get a Life Insurance Policy: No one wants to think of the unimaginable happening, but buying a whole universal life insurance policy will guard against financial devastation in the event that you die an untimely death. From covering funeral expenses to providing for your children’s college educations, a life insurance policy won’t take away the pain of losing you, but it can make the aftermath of the loss a lot more practically bearable.


Go to the Doctor: Few people are as timely as they ought to be when something seems out of sorts with their physical or mental health. Even fewer take the time and opportunity to see the doctor for preventative screenings and tests in order to nip any potential trouble in the bud. Show your family how much you care about them by going to the doctor when you’re ill and when you’re not. According to the CDC, clinical preventative care would save over 100,000 lives each year. Increase your chances of staying healthy longer by incorporating preventative care into your lifestyle.


Pick Up the Slack: Whether it’s because your partner is training for a marathon or because your teenager is in one too many AP classes, there come times when chores in and around the house won’t get accomplished as well or as readily as you would like. Instead of criticizing those around you for their shortcomings in this regard, when your schedule allows, pitch in and pick up the slack. Not only will it decrease your stress about how your home environment is faring, but it will also show your family members how much you value them and their efforts.


Offer Assistance: In a similar fashion to picking up the slack around you, be willing to offer assistance when you can. Grab the edger and get to work on that part of the yard, while your daughter mows the lawn. Chop the onions for the chili, while your spouse mixes the salad. Offer to pick up your son’s study partner for the evening, so he can take a break between school, sports practice, and studying. Because it highlights our interdependence and affection, offering practical help to your family will endear you to them and them to you even more.


Listen: Listening to your partner and children is one of the most pragmatic ways you can actively show how much you care for them. Giving attention to another person lets her know you find her and what she’s thinking about and talking about interesting. It can’t be overstated how much listening to your family members will show them your love.


Take Care of Yourself: Do you exercise regularly? Have you quit smoking? Do you eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables? Do you engage in activities that bring you pleasure and reduce your stress? While the contemporary world can be a difficult place to care for one’s self properly, doing the best you can will allow your family to experience the happiest, healthiest you there is.


Do Work That Satisfies You: In keeping with taking care of yourself, show your family you love them by modeling a work life that’s in balance and satisfying to you. The vast majority of Americans dislike their jobs, and that dislike spills over into their home lives, hobbies, and recreational activities. Do work you enjoy—even if it pays less than work you hate—so that the life you and your family experience together can be as peaceful and loving as possible.

Expressions of love can and should take many forms, but at least some of them need to be practical enough to be lived out in the real world. Take the time to listen; get yourself a good life insurance policy, and fit in these other five tips to show your family the depth of your love.