*I had read this post years ago on a personal blog that does not exist any more. Sharing it here because it is all the more relevant today.*
The nicest thing that anyone ever did for me – other than my husband – was to fill my refrigerator full of diet Coke.
Yes, it was that simple.
I was working day and night on a deal for weeks on end and I had run out of diet Coke at home. At this time, I drank diet Coke in the morning (they hadn’t yet invented diet RockStar) and I’d been waking up for days without a damn diet Coke in my house.
One day I came home and I opened my refrigerator. My refrigerator, wall to wall and top to bottom, was completely packed with cans and cans and cans of diet Coke.
I remember it like it was yesterday. A refrigerator full of diet Coke. I was so touched that I cried.
This happened what must now be close to 10 years ago.
That person knew me. That person knew how to love me.
Someone once told me that there are four primary ways in which people like to be shown love: (1) affirmations; (2) tokens; (3) touch; and (4) acts of service. To most effectively show your love, you need to know how the object of your affection likes to be shown love.
People who need affirmations need to be told how wonderful they are. How smart they are. How beautiful they are and how much you love them.
People who need tokens need gifts – tokens of affection. Flowers. Jewelry. Tickets to the Niners game.
People who need touch need – you guessed it – to be touched. They need to be hugged, to have their arm squeezed when you pass, to not just sit next to you on the couch, but to snuggle with you on the couch.
People who need acts of service need what are essentially favors. They need to have their dry cleaning picked up just so they don’t have to do it. They need you to think about what they need – and give that to them. They need a refrigerator full of diet Coke.
Pretty simple. And, once you actually ask someone which of these makes them feel most loved, its pretty simple to show them that love in a way that they feel loved.
Don’t tell me how great and wonderful and beautiful I am – I’ll wonder what bridge you’re going to try to sell me.
Don’t buy me flowers – I’ll just forget to change the water and they’ll die in a day or two and I’ll feel guilty. Don’t buy me jewelry either. I have jewelry that I like. And that I wear. That I bought myself.
Don’t touch me – ok, touch me – massage my neck, back and shoulders. An act of service more than touching for the sake of touching.
That’s right – don’t do any of these things.
To show me you love me, fill my fridge with diet coke.