Nov 18, 2020

Do you know your love language? Do you know your partners? Or your kids’? Do you know why it matters?

As humans, we communicate in many different ways. It isn’t always through our words, but through our body language, through our actions, through our giftings, and how we chose to serve the world. Dr. Gary Chapman published a book over 25 years ago called the 5 Love Languages. This book has guided many couples to a more sustained relationship. He has since published books for single people, parents, and employers.

So, what are the 5 Love Languages and why does it matter in your journey to becoming Purely You? It matters because this is another tool to learn more about yourself and your loved ones, so you can show up better for each other. It matters, because it may ease some tension in your relationships if you can recognize different ways, we each show love. It matters because how you communicate with one another makes a big impact on all other aspects of your life.

The idea is that we show our love and appreciation primarily in one of five ways. Words of Affirmation, Quality Time, Gifts, Physical Touch, and Acts of Service. Many people have a primary and secondary language that they use most often when showing their love. This primary language is also linked to how they receive love from others.

In a nutshell:

Words of Affirmation people tend to show and receive love most through words. They are the folks who write long messages in greeting cards or poetry to communicate their feelings. They are the ones to feel the most loved when they hear endearing words from their loved ones. For instance, saying “I’m proud of you” means more to these people than a celebratory gift for a job well done.

Quality Time people feel most loved when they are able to spend time with their loved ones. Not at a movie, or on the couch scrolling through their phones, but a time that is just the two of them with no other interruptions or distractions.

Gifts people feel most loved when they receive gifts. These people tend to be good gifters, as well. They have a knack for knowing just what to get each person on their Christmas list and they love it most when someone offers them something thoughtful in return. These don’t have to be big expensive gifts, bringing home their favorite candy bar is enough to make a gift person feel loved.

Physical Touch people show their love and affection through touch. Whether it be holding hands in the car or a handshake goodbye to a long-lost friend, they will show their love and feel most loved with touch. These people will always feel more appreciated with a literal pat on the back, then a public “good job.”

Acts of Service people show their love by doing things for you and feel loved when you do for them. Maybe that is cooking your favorite meal, or making sure the oil is always changed in the car. That could look like a partner who mows the lawn, or a friend who comes over and folds the laundry that is on the couch. These people would feel the most loved if you took something off their plate for them and will show their love by doing the same for you.

We all use different versions of each of the 5LL in our lives, but we each have one or two that become our most used and most appreciated. Do you know what yours are, just by reading these quick descriptions? Can you identify your partners? Your parent’s? Your kids? Interesting isn’t it?

If your partner’s (parent/child/friend/etc.) language is different than yours, you may have felt some tension in your relationship. Now, that you have recognized the differences, can you see how they are loving you? Can you see why they don’t respond to how you’re loving them?

If you cannot recognize it, there is a quiz available at https://www.5lovelanguages.com/quizzes/. Have everyone in your house take them and talk about it over dinner. Then make a conscious effort to show each family member love in the way they respond to it best. I highly recommend reading the book too, it offers so much more insight and guidance than is available through the website.

Also, keep this in mind during the gifting seasons. If your person is a word’s person, a thoughtful card will mean more than the flowers. If they are a time person, plan a “just us” experience for the two of you. If they’re a gifts person, spend some time really thinking about their interests/hobbies/needs. If they are an acts person, consider doing something for them that they haven’t had the time to do themselves. And if they are a touch person, consider a massage.

Using your love language to your advantage is one of the best ways to feel loved, fulfilled, and appreciated in your relationships. I’d love to hear what your love language is! Tell me below!


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