When your SO is stressed, what’s your signature move? Maybe you whip up their favorite meal, initiate some stress-relieving sexy time right after work, or try to take their mind off things by planning a fun date night. All of these approaches can be helpful, depending on your partner’s preferences. But did you know that you can also show bae some TLC with a quick text message? Sending supportive texts when your partner is stressed is such a simple strategy, but you may be surprised at how much of an impact it can have.
A 2018 study published in Computers in Human Behavior proved that a simple text can actually be super effective when someone is faced with a difficult task. To test the power of a text, the University of California researchers tasked 75 women with preparing a public speech in four minutes and put their romantic partners in another room. While they were working on their stressful task, some of them received no text at all, some got a text from their partner expressing their support (along the lines of “Don’t worry! You’ll be fine”), and others got a text about something unrelated and mundane, like the weather. Unsurprisingly, participants in the latter two groups who received texts said they felt more loved and cared for, in comparison to those who didn’t get a text. Not only that but receiving a mundane text actually reduced participants’ blood pressure, demonstrating that sometimes all you need to do is distract your boo or remind them of your presence to help them calm down.
The mere act of reaching out to let your partner know they're not alone is powerful in and of itself. Not sure what to say? Here are a few texts that might prove particularly calming and comforting during this challenging time.
1. Counting down the minutes until I can snuggle you.
2. You free tonight? I have a little surprise for you.
3. I know you’re busy today, so no need to reply — just wanted to send a quick reminder that I love you, I believe in you, and I’m here for you.
4. FYI, I’m an excellent sounding board for venting.
5. This text is good for one back rub, redeemable whenever and wherever.
6. I want you to know that I'm so proud of how you’ve been balancing everything lately under so much pressure. You inspire me each and every day.
7. Whatever happens in the coming week, just know that I’m already proud of you.
8. Hey, remember when you got through [insert life obstacle]? It’s safe to say you can definitely get through this, too.
9. I know you’ve got a lot on your plate right now, but I can promise you this: It’s going to get better.
10. Rather than focusing on what you haven't gotten done, try focusing on all of the amazing things you have accomplished... because it's a pretty impressive list, IMO.
11. Remember to take a break and eat something nourishing today!
12. Is there anything I can do to make your life easier RN?
13. Hey, I know we have plans tonight, and I’d obviously love to see you — but just know that if you need some “me” time to chill solo, that’s totally fine by me.
14. Quick reminder: if you’re feeling overwhelmed today, try doing some deep breathing exercises [insert link with instructions here].
15. Can I bring you some lunch today? #ServiceWithASmooch.
Hooker, E. D., Campos, B., & Pressman, S. D. (2018). It just takes a text: Partner text messages can reduce cardiovascular responses to stress in females. Computers in Human Behavior, 84, 485–492. doi: 10.1016/j.chb.2018.02.033