Just saying, “I love you” may not fully reveal just how much you care. When creating or maintaining a deep, emotional connection with your partner, your body often speaks louder than words. Here are 9 nonverbals that are unexpected “love motions” that you can use to surprise your partner by showing “I Love You.”

Love Motion #1: Disconnect from the digital to connect with the physical.
These days, the most powerful show of love is to put your phone away. Yes, really! I know it can cause “connection” withdrawal, but your partner is worth it. There is no greater show of love than to make your partner the center of your attention.

Love Motion #2: Show your real “happy-to-see-you” smile.
Smiles speak right to the heart. A “happy to see you” smile is a long, slow smile that unfolds as your partner begins to speak. Ramp up the show of affection with a slight tilt of your head as you listen. A gentle knowing nod confirms you are in the moment connecting with only them.

Love Motion #3: Make “puppy eyes.”
Take a moment to gaze deep into your partner’s eyes. When your heart skips a beat, share it with them. You can even share it with a bit of Love Motion #2. An average amount of eye contact is less than three seconds. When you want to send a message of love and appreciation, hold that eye contact with love in your heart just a bit longer. It may surprise your partner — it’s okay if they ask you: “Is everything alright?”

Love Motion #4: Share free-flowing laughter.
Challenge yourself to the pursuit of finding the humor in everything and express it with laughter. Laughing with someone opens the space to connect and express your self in a true and present way.

Love Motion #5: Give a “Your-Mine” hug.
Whether from the front, side or back, it’s fun and reassuring to gently come up to your partner and hug them – especially when it’s unexpected.

Love Motion #6: Take delight in stealthy touching.
Okay, get your head out of the gutter. This one is just like the hug, but less intrusive, especially in public. When you sit next to each other lightly brush fingertips. Those bright, little moments do a lot to bond us for an instant and those instants add up.

Love motion #7: Breathe – Together.
Breathing together can bring you both in sync and expand your awareness of each other as a couple — united. Find a quiet place to share a few breaths together. The results may just surprise you.

Love motion #8: Respond to your lover’s bids.
“The small moments of everyday life are actually the building blocks of [a strong] relationship,” revealed relationship experts Drs. John and Julie Gottman. Watch and listen for your partner’s emotional bids for connection. Respond in a positive way and openly share your needs in a loving manner.

Love Motion #9: Share a “little joy” you found in them today.
It’s all too easy to take out life’s frustrations on your partner. Simple expressions of appreciation for the everyday things like saying “please” and “thank you” honor those that have dedicated their lives to you. We all love to be appreciated for the little things we do every day and it’s an easy way to demonstrate that you value your partner.

Doing any one of these nine will express love to your partner, but when you start to add them together that’s where you will find the exponential growth effect will take hold and take your connection with your partner to a whole new level.

In joy!