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52 Ways to Tell Someone You Love and Appreciate Them

I Love You

“The most important thing in this world is to learn to give out love and let it come in.” ~Morrie Schwartz

As a child, I never heard the phrase “I love you.” Now, I hear people say it all the time—at the end of phone calls and whenever parting ways.

When I moved away from my hometown of Adelaide, South Australia, twenty years ago, I noticed how much less I felt loved interstate in Melbourne, Victoria. Even though I didn’t hear “I love you” when I was in Adelaide, somehow I knew people cared.

Soon after I arrived here, I had two wonderful children who’ve taught me all about love. They regularly tell me they love me, and I often overhear them telling their friends.

This got me thinking: how can we let people know we care, beyond simply saying “I love you?”

I decided to make a list of some expressions that we can all say more often to family, friends, partners, and even colleagues. Perhaps you could use one of these each week for the next year.

1. You are special to me.

2. I feel amazing when I spend time with you.

3. You give me goosebumps.

4. I feel safe sharing my secrets with you.

5. I accept you as you are.

6. I understand how you feel.

7. Is there anything I can do to help?

8. I always have fun when I am with you.

9. Please tell me how it is for you so I can understand.

10. Can I hold your hand?

11. Can I give you a hug?

12. You inspire me.

13. I really appreciate it when you…

14. You are one of the most amazing gifts I have ever received.

15. I value everything you’ve taught me.

16. The insights you have shared mean the world to me.

17. Your thoughtfulness is a delight to receive.

18. I will never forget how you…

19. I feel so relaxed and happy when you…

20. Seeing you when … happened made it all okay.

21. I can feel it when your heart sings because it makes my heart sing too.

22. I could sit next to you and not say anything and be at peace.

23. The way you handled … showed me that you are truly…

24. Your comments about … helped me enormously.

25. I’m thankful to have you in my life.

26. I could go anywhere with you.

27. I believe your intentions for me are always good, even when I cannot understand what you do.

28. I trust you.

29. I can go outside of my comfort zone with you.

30. Knowing you gives me courage.

31. The world is less scary when I am with you.

32. I appreciate that your suggestions help me make difficult choices.

33. I lose all concept of time when I am with you.

34. If something serious happened to me, you’re the first person I would call.

35. You are so generous in spirit.

36. Surprise me more often because I like your surprises.

37. I love how you … whenever I need to …

38. I hear your voice even when we are not in the same place.

39. I feel connected to you even when I cannot see you.

40. Your wisdom has saved me.

41. I feel refreshed and renewed around you.

42. I enjoy your sense of humor.

43. Whenever I see a photo of us together, I smile.

44. I appreciate that you think about my feelings before you do and say things.

45. Your smile makes me smile.

46. I love that you know me so well.

47. When I think about you, I often remember when you…

48. I want to keep you in my past, present, and future.

49. I can be me when I am with you—I hope you feel the same way.

50. Circumstance brought us together; choice keeps us together.

You are so lovable.

I love you.

I know that the positive feedback I’ve received in the past has kept me going during the darkest moments of my life.

I hope that by saying “I love you” in many different ways, the special people in your life will have good memories that can sustain them during the more difficult moments in their lives.

How do you let people know you love them?

I love you image via Shutterstock

Profile photo of Sue Ellson

About Sue Ellson

Sue Ellson BBus AIMM MAHRI is the Founder and Director of Newcomers Network, a socially responsible business providing information, events and advocacy for newcomers and networkers in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane and Perth. Sue started this enterprise in 1999 as a result of her own difficult transition from Adelaide to Melbourne. Connect with Sue via LinkedIn or learn more at SueEllson.com.

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  • kat

    i love this! bookmarked!

  • Guest

    amazing read- I kept thinking about how these apply to people in my life who I haven’t really told that I love them but still do!

  • Brando

    Thank you, I enjoyed reading this.

  • Ruth

    A friend said the nicest thing to me recently and it stuck: “You’re a really good friend to me.”

  • Thanks Kat, a great honour!

  • A wonderful comment Ruth and no doubt, well earned!

  • Thank you Brando – anything else you can add?

  • Thanks for commenting and becoming more aware of the people you do love! 🙂

  • Thank you for sharing this. Very enjoyable to read. Empathy truly is a beautiful thing.

  • lil.puzzle

    “knowing you gives me courage” — wow, never realized this could be an expression of love. I know someone who could be very negative and toxic to the soul. Yet that knowledge makes me strive to be a better person. Thanks for the enlightenment!

  • You are most welcome lil.puzzle – I am sure you can think of many other expressions of love – and sometimes those negative people teach us more than the positive ones do! I remember working with a woman who frustrated me enormously – but she made me better! 🙂

  • Thank you Ventain – yes, empathy is very useful and sometimes, a bit of humble yet empowering sympathy can help too…

  • Scott

    I like, “you are a source of peace or calm in my life”.

  • A good reminder! THANK YOU!! <3

  • Peter

    I am bookmarking this. Thank you!

  • Reading this article reminds me that there is truly no excuse for withholding that emotion with all those different ways to express it!

  • Yes Alex, there are many ways to express love – do you also know about the five love languages as well? Apart from words of affirmation, you can also provide acts of service, spend quality time with someone or give physical touch or gifts…so you can probably multiply these ideas by another 52 each!

  • Thanks Peter and would love to hear some reactions you receive!

  • Thanks Syaf! Keep smiling! 🙂

  • Thanks Scott – yes, when someone brings that into your life, it is truly special!

  • interesting

  • Thanks Dbakeca Italia – which part was most interesting to you?

  • beautiful

  • Thanks Paulette… 🙂

  • Chris Harrison

    Great article. It’s nice to think of all the different ways.
    I wrote I love you in different languages on 50 thankyou cards using an old dip pen andink and send one by post (even when we are together) to my partner Every fortnight or so with a little explanation of the country and a reason for saying it each time.
    Your list will certainly help 🙂

  • Oh Chris, that sounds so lovely! How thoughtful of you! 🙂

  • I’m still here

    Matthew 16:19

  • Anon

    So many ways to say “I love you”. I wish I had seen this before she left me; I probably wouldn’t be crying right now…

  • I am sorry to hear that you are hurting right now. Tears and grief can be very painful. Remember to say some of these to yourself…

  • Guest M

    W,
    The majority of this list is what I want to express… when I feel “bothered” or appear to be acting “strange.”
    I hold back, because I don’t know how you will react.
    I know, you sense how I feel about you (sincerely), I’m easy to read.
    11, 14, 22, 26, 28, 38, 39, 46 Stand out the most on a daily basis.
    25, 48 mean the most!
    I think about you and your family (yes, everyone), when I think about you. I remember everything you say, share, or do.
    I hurt, when you are hurt or are injured.
    Most importantly…I don’t flirt with you, (you know the many, many reasons why)
    My bond with you will always be…
    Today, tomorrow, forever….strong!

  • Lovely comments and thanks for sharing a detailed response Guest M!

  • all of these

  • Kelly Richards

    Thank you for sharing this beautiful list , worth using .After truly taking the time and reading out loud to myself this list , it actually touched my heart , therefore I’m positive it will touch others whom I will now share with . The expressions I’ve always used were : 1. I love you 2. You mean the world to me 3. You’re special to me 4. You’re my pumpkin 5. You’re a shining star 6. I appreciate you 7. You’re the best 8. You’re an inspiration to me 9. You’re my hero
    Ways I’ve been truly touched on the receiving end by a very special friend who I look up to admire and love are 1. You Light up my life 2. You’re adored unconditionally 3. I appreciate you 4. Thanks my supportive loving friend 5. You will always be my dear friend 6. I admire and love strong women they’re my superheroes 7. You’re the most thoughtful person I’ve ever met 8. You’re a beautiful soul 9. You’re very generous

  • Thank you Kelly for sharing your insights, what you have found so positive in the past and for sharing the list with people you know.

    Tiny Buddha is a lovely forum for sharing information! 🙂

  • jewelz

    This amazing man that I have. Been with for the past 2_1/2 almost 3 years, has really opened up my heart and fulfilled my heart with so much love, and companionship, that I never had growing up. He tell me each and every day how much he loves and care for me.

  • jewelz

    I agree with you as well

  • jewelz

    Thank you for your inspiration.Love is everything especially when you never got told you was loved even by your own family, but I’m at peace now with muse, reading everyone’s post., thank you

  • Bob

    Sue, this is a great post 🙂

    (btw, are you single? hehe 😉

  • Glad you like it Bob – sorry, not single…happy searching!

  • Many of pride forget to say any more “I love you” to your beloved new

  • Jane

    This was beautiful, Sue. It was obvious you put time, effort, and your heart into it. It made me very emotional. I’ll be putting this up in my house.

  • Jane

    I’m glad you finally found what you deserved your whole life. Not everyone is that lucky. Cherish him.

  • Thanks Jane for sharing them with the ones you love. I am honoured. 🙂

  • Yes, it can be difficult for some people to say – however, I don’t think it automatically means that they don’t have love for you. Keep loving people anyway.

  • Thanks Bob, glad you liked it!

  • Yes, cherish him indeed! Remember also that there is always love within each of us – finding it and appreciating it can be wonderful too.

  • Great to hear you are finding your own type of peace jewelz

  • Jena Martin

    i only came on here because i needed to do this for someone i really like at my school

  • Hi Jena, thanks for your feedback and I do hope you found a way to share your feelings with your school friend. One of the best things I remember doing at school with my friends was spending time together during breaks in the library and exploring something of mutual interest. Perhaps you could make a comment about how much you appreciate this person spending time with you when everyone is so busy these days?

  • Mandy

    I wanted to get some great ideas to show and tell people they are loved, and I want to tell you that you are golden, Sue. 🙂 Many great and wonderful blessings to you and yours! Thanks for posting this great article. 🙂

  • Thanks Mandy – good on you for doing the research and sharing your golden attitude! 🙂

  • Pierre Mushongi

    Simply amazing.. I just can’t stop admiring this splendid thoughts… It inspired me abruptly

  • Thank you Pierre Mushongi 🙂

  • AMC

    Great Lines … For Appreciate Someone

  • I am so excited that you have found some new ways to share you feel! 🙂

  • Thanks AMC – yes, there are many people that we can appreciate! 🙂

  • Lilly

    I been needing to tell my crush how much I loved him and I needed inspiration and this helped so much. Thank you

  • You are most welcome Lilly – start with something you find easy and comfortable first – something that you know he will feel comfortable with – and best wishes! 🙂

  • Gina Andrade

    Can you please do an ideas list with the five love languages? It would be forever treasured. Currently reading the book and I love it.

  • Pierre Mushongi

    Your a natural in expressing feelings…amazing

  • Thank you Pierre

  • Thanks Gina, a great idea, I will put this on my list of things to do and report back. Cheers, Sue

  • Pat

    Sounds idiotic

  • brady

    I have known this girl for 6 years and I am head over hills in love with her how and what do I say to her I mean we are dating but I can’t show or explain how much I love her what do I do

  • Chantel Crandall

    First, take her to a fancy restaurant or some place she really connects with. Then start to tell her some funny jokes. Compliment her smile/ laugh and say something like “You know y/n, I love your _____, which leads me to tell you I am in love with you. I hope you feel the same about me.” Before you do, make sure you ARE in love with her. LOVE: WHEN YOU WOULD GIVE THEM YOUR LAST DYING BREATH. I learned that lesson the hard way.

  • Hi Brady, I am no expert on this, but I would suggest you need to open up a little more in general conversations until the point where you feel comfortable discussing any topic. Then, you will see how your intimacy grows with your girlfriend and you will see her relax and you will know when it is right to explain how you feel. You can plant little seeds here and there – ‘I love the way you remember things’ etc. Then when it comes time to say the big one, ‘I love you, and everything that means,’ you will not be nervous. If you have spent six years together, I am sure that she knows, she just hasn’t heard you say the official words…let us know how you go! 🙂