What is your love language? Do you know that there are five types of love language you can speak? Do you know that identifying your love language and that of your partner can meaningfully impact your relationship?
Love Language - Meaning
Dr. Gary Chapman coined the term "love language" to describe how we show love and shown love in return. The truth is, we love differently. Some of us are totally and invested, while others may not be obviously invested but truly are. Well, as long as you feel loved and can make your partner feel the same way, you have been speaking each other's love language, just maybe without knowing.
The 5 Love Languages
According to Gary Chapman in his book, The Five Love Languages: How To Express Heartfelt Commitment To Your Mate, there are five ways to speak love languages.
Words of affirmation
Acts of service
Of the above, which speaks to your heart? Which of them really tickles your fancy and always touches your heart when no other thing can? Let's take them one after the other.
Words Of Affirmation
This refers to showing love through words. If you feel sweet, tingly, and can't just seem to remain angry when you hear, "I love you," "you're the only one in my heart," "I'm thinking about you," and so on, very likely this is your primary love language.
Words that affirm that you are loved and special to your loved one are words of affirmation. You can let your partner know that this thrills you. Hence, he or she will know to compose thoughtful texts with love quotes and love poems or short video clips to tell you how much you mean to them.
Words of affirmation aren't limited to the above. It also includes compliments, compliments about appearance, or commendation for a job well done. So, a simple "That meal was so delicious. You are a great cook" or "your dress sense is impeccable," and other compliments about his or her personality speaks deeply to someone who values affirming words. Also are reminders that they are capable when in doubt of their capabilities.
Note that words of love speak deeply to them in the same way, so harsh criticism is particularly painful. Negative, derogatory, and overly critical words are like a dagger in their heart. It would hurt them more than it would someone with a different love language.
Acts Of Service
Acts of service refer to "anything you do to ease the burden of responsibility. " As a wife, I must say this is one love language I appreciate. It could be cooking when she's sick, doing some house chores before she gets out of bed, assisting her with grocery shopping, or helping in the kitchen.
Other acts of service include:
Caring for her when she's down
Doing the laundry
Filling her gas tank
Waiting for him or her at the salon
Washing and drying clothes together
Bringing her medication
Charging his gadgets when he's asleep
A massage without prompt
Loosening her braids
There's a long list.
For partners who feel loved when you do acts of service, ask him or her to tell you what you can do to make life easier and work on what you're told.
If it's your love language, let your partner know.
This involves showing love by making an effort to spend time with your partner and giving him or her your undivided attention. For some people, this is all they need to feel loved
If this is your partner's love language, learn to listen without the distraction of cell phones, TV, or straying thoughts. They are quite observant and can tell when your mind is elsewhere, even if you seem to be there.
You can set time aside each day while at work to talk to each other without external disturbances. It could be as little as five minutes. Always try to maintain eye contact when having a conversation. Just make sure you have that "just me and you time" each day.
People with this love language appreciate hugs, holding hands, pecks, and pats on the back. Others include:
An ear rub
Cuddling while watching a movie
A neck rub after a long day
Resting his or her head on your shoulder
Putting her legs or his head on your laps while watching TV
Running your hands through his or her hair
Holding hands while working
Intertwining arms at the cinema
It's almost like they have skin hunger. They also love PDA (Public Display of Affection).
If this is your partner's love language, speak it. He or she might want to do the same to you because it's what they love but, if it's not your love language, gently and tactfully let them know what yours is.
Receiving gifts makes some people feel loved. This doesn't make them materialistic. Often, it's not about the gift, but the thought and effort put into it. When my husband gets me a gift, the first thought that comes to mind is, "he thought of me," especially when I wasn't expecting anything. It's even better when the gift is something I need. It means he has been paying attention to me.
Those with this love language often tell you what they like in random conversations. Note things down. If you go shopping or are browsing through an online market and he or she keeps pointing out certain things they would like to get but can't afford yet, note them down. When you can, surprise him or her.
It's about picking gifts that show that you understand your partner. It doesn't have to be extravagant. It could be her favorite salad, running shoes, earrings, bracelet, his favorite snack, a shoe he pinned, a mini bag, her favorite cake, or a childhood dream. They should be gifts that show that you've been paying attention and haven't forgotten the tiny details about them.
The Most Common Love Language
Well, according to a test carried out on Gary Chapman's website in 2010, 23% of visitors picked words of affirmation as their love language followed closely by acts of service and quality time, then physical touch before gift-giving. Though this isn't a scientific study and isn't based on a very wide range of people, it gives us an inkling about what a considerable number of people prefer.
Can I Have More Than One Love Language?
Yes, you can. But, there's always the primary one, like your first choice. When your partner understands you enough to speak your love language, your relationship takes on a new life. Remember, give, and take. When he speaks yours, speak his.
Conclusively, your love language isn't necessarily your partner's love language. So don't make the mistake of only expressing love to your partner the way you want to receive it. Learn how they want to be loved and let them know how you want to be loved.