Some years back I read Gary Chapman’s “The Five Love Languages”. I was young and it was an interesting read but I hadn’t met someone with who I could practice. Years later, I find myself reverting to this book to help me understand the language of my partner and in my other relationships with family and friends and I use it to help guide me when I feel lost in understanding people.
The 5 Love Languages
1. Words of Affirmation – This person is very verbal and expresses their affection through the things they say or write.
2. Quality Time – For these people, giving their time is the most valuable thing they can provide and they ask that you share that time with them, undivided.
3. Giving Gifts – The gift givers may not be keen on telling you that they love you but they will demonstrate it by offering you thoughtful gifts.
4. Acts of Service – These lovers prefer to do nice things to help out and show their support through actions.
5. Physical Touch – The aspect of physical touch is self explanatory, these people love to hug, kiss, caress and just physically be near to the people they love.
Some people strongly exhibit one trait only and it is obvious to the onlooker which trait that is. Others are a little more tricky and exhibit a combination of different traits. The most important thing is to be able to determine the trait, to understand and acknowledge their style of communicating love and to pay tribute to the person. To acknowledge the trait you will need to communicate with the other person that you understand their method of expressing love. Let them know that you realize that this is their style of communication and then pay them gratitude; compliment them, thank them, let them know that you appreciate it.
The biggest problem that many couples run into is a lack of communication which leads into misunderstandings and hurt feelings. When we allow ourselves to open up the lines of communication and we engage in clarifying conversations we can uncover the root of a lot of our problems and then we can work on fixing them.
Here are some tips on determining the love language that a person speaks:
– Observe how they act around other people, this is sometimes easier to do because we are not being as critical of them nor blinding our judgment by placing ourselves in-between the subject and the task at hand.
– Listen to them, watch them and make note of things that your partner does each day when they are around you. Sometimes we take people’s actions for granted because we become so accustomed to them.
– Take note of what “language” your partner is most receptive to, this is many times an indicator to their language because; we accept what we are familiar with.
– Ask them. Sit down and have a conversation with them and simply ask them how they express their love for you, it seems so logical but we often forget to ask the simple questions.
Written by Danielle M. of www.babblingink.com “Outsourcing Professionals United”