Have you ever felt misunderstood by your partner when it comes to how you express love? Sure, everyone feels, expresses and responds to situations in different ways depending on their personality, past experiences, and/or how they were raised. So, when it comes to love, this is no different. But sometimes these differences can cause miscommunication between couples or misinterpretation of one another’s feelings. And when it comes to love, it can be tricky to read your partner in the beginning and therefore, show your love and affection in ways that are well received. To make things a little “easier” for couples to strengthen their relationships through communication, Dr. Gary Chapman identified The 5 Love Languages.
There are five ways to demonstrate and feel love; these include, words of affirmation, quality time, receiving gifts, acts of service and physical touch. More often than not, we have a different love language than our partner and that’s when misinterpretation or miscommunication can pop up in our relationship. Recognizing each other’s love language and putting them into practice can both improve communication and strengthen your bond in almost any relationship!
How can we figure out our partner’s love languages and even our own? Besides taking tests online, you might already know what makes your partner swoon and what makes you feel loved. Balancing the two in our relationships, especially when they differ, can be a little intimidating at first. We’ve outlined each love language below and a few ways you can “speak” it every day.
1. Words of Affirmation
If you’re good at expressing yourself through words, this might be easy since verbal communication is key in this love language. If not, try writing notes and leaving them for your significant other to find. Use phrases like “I love you,” I appreciate you,” and “thank you” more often. Even more, talking about why you love one another, what you love most about one another (whether it be their beauty, sense of humor, loyalty, or simply how they make you feel), or just about your relationship in general, can create deeper value to these words of affirmation.
2. Quality Time
We all know quality time can sometimes be hard with busy schedules and ringing cell phones, but if quality time is your partner’s love language, they crave your undivided attention. Spending time together without distractions, such as cell phones or media, could be anything from sitting down to eat a meal together or it could be planning an activity to do together, like cooking, going for a walk, bike ride, or hike. It could be as simple as running errands together or as elaborate as a big date night surprise.
3. Receiving Gifts
At first glance, this love language can seem well, expensive! But receiving gifts doesn’t always mean buying your partner those earnings or watch they’ve been eyeing up. It could be as simple as picking up their favorite snack at the grocery store while you’re there or picking a flower for them as you walk along the park or work in the garden. Tokens of love and appreciation, however small or grand, can go a long way.
4. Acts of Service
People who speak this love language aren’t looking for a butler to wait on them hand and foot, although helping around the house is a great way to “speak” this love language. Acts of service could be as simple and easy as opening and holding a door, offering to drive on your next date, or grabbing a second drink for them during your own trip to the fridge. Making their day to day a little easier will speak volumes! Cleaning up the kitchen after dinner, getting ahead on laundry, or completing any number of “chores” on your partner’s to-do list are big ways to speak their language.
5. Physical Touch
One of the most obvious love languages is physical touch. Hand holding, kissing, hugging, cuddling and being intimate are seemingly natural ways to show love and affection. But the physical touch love language can be spoken by putting your hand on their back or shoulder or offering a back or foot massage after a long day. Physical communication can be just as strong as saying “I love you,” especially if this is your or your partner’s love language.
Not sure what your love language is, or maybe you need more ideas on how to speak your date's love language? Talk to our experts at Love Brokers for more guidance!