The 5 Love Languages – Learning the Best Way to Communicate Love
The 5 love languages is a system of understanding how you personally like to give and receive love in your intimate relationships. This concept of 5 primary types of loving expression originate from a book titled “The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate” written by Gary Chapman in 1995. Since then, there have been many new renditions and recreations of these love languages but these 5 core expressions still remain as relevant and powerful in our modern day relationships.
There are a few different online quizzes you can take to see which expression you desire most to give and receive, but this process can also be done simply through your intuition.
While everyone may enjoy different aspects of each love language, generally we all have one or two main languages that we express more naturally. As everyone has their own unique preferences and desires, this helps define the type of people and relationships we tend to attract.
Knowing your love language greatly helps communication, emotional support and creates a better understanding between you and your partner, as you’re both aware of how to give and receive love from each other in ways that are specific to you.
1. Words of Affirmation
This love language is based around verbal communication that uplifts and encourages us. A simple way to affirm your partner is by thanking them and letting them know you appreciate them. Those who predominantly speak this love language want to know they’re appreciated and loved through the words of their partner, so choose them wisely and be authentic!
Compliments, encouragement and affirming their positive qualities are all great ways to show love to your significant other. A simple phrase of “I really appreciate you!” can mean so much to someone who’s main love language is words of affirmation.
The act of giving a gift is a favorite love language for many. However, this doesn’t always need to be a typical purchase from a store. When we take the time to create something from our hearts, that care and compassion we put into our gift can sometimes be the greatest gift of all.
This can also look like going on a trip with your partner or sending them to a spa, if that’s something they enjoy. The act of giving a gift lets your partner know you’re thinking about them and want to show care in a present that is specific to their preferences. Make sure you know what your partner likes and that your gift reflects their unique desires.
3. Acts of Service
Acts of service differ from giving a gift, in that this is doing something for someone, rather giving something to them. This is doing something for your partner that you know they would really appreciate. It can be as simple as doing the dishes for them, cleaning, or cooking them an amazing meal.
If you know there’s a task they dislike doing, like taking out the garbage, doing that for them can mean the world to a partner who’s love language is primarily acts of service. It shows them you’re really thinking of their needs in a tangible and loving way.
4. Quality Time
Quality time, at its core, is all about presence. It’s about giving your partner your undivided attention and affection. This can still look like watching a movie together, where your attention is on a shared activity; but the purpose is to do it together. One of the main ways we express quality time is by truly listening and engaging with our partner emotionally. When we listen without expectation, from a place of compassion and understanding, we create a beautifully sacred space for our partner to feel safe and accepted. This allows both partners to be vulnerable and authentic with each other, which over time can create an amazingly powerful bond in a relationship.
5. Physical Touch
Touching our partners may be something we do all the time without thinking; gently putting our hand on their shoulder or holding their hand. But when we do it with intention, the act of touch becomes completely different. If we know our partner likes to be touched as their love language, we can use things like massage, hugging and kissing as a more sacred act of love for them.
For partners whose primary love language is touch – even just putting our hand on theirs for a moment as we speak to them can be very meaningful.
As we learn and grow in our relationships, our main love language may shift over time. It’s always important to maintain a level of open communication between partners, ensuring both people are giving and receiving equally.