By Nancy Lynn
It has been said that there are 5 different ways to express our love to another person. Though we might use a little of each one at different times, there is one primary love language that we will use or desire in our relationships. As you read through the languages below, note which language you feel best describes how you give love and what language makes you feel loved by someone.
Words of Affirmation
If your love language is “words of affirmation” it is important to you to receive appreciation for what you have done or just completed. Hearing praise when you arrive home from work or recognition of a good job on a project will light up your world. I have listened to many men that have stated, “I work every bit of overtime so that I can bring home a good paycheck and yet my spouse continues to be upset with me, stating I do nothing around the home. I never hear a single word of appreciation about how hard I am working so that we can have this home.”
If your spouse is coming from the primary love language of words of affirmation, your appreciation and praise for all the hard work will grow new life into your marriage or relationship.
Acts of Service
I am sure you have heard the saying, “Actions speak louder than words.” That is so true for people who view “acts of service” as their love language. You can tell them over and over again how much you love them, though helping them wash the dishes might be the most beautiful act of love that you can give them. If this act of service is the primary language of love for your spouse, helping him/her with chores or projects will put a spark in their passion. Nothing will speak more deeply to a person who views this as their primary love language than a simple act of service.
We have used the act of giving a gift as an expression of love throughout time. If this is not your language of love you might miss a few important occasions such as birthdays, anniversaries or other special dates. It is not because these dates are not important, it is because the dates do not express love in your love language. Although if this is your spouse’s primary love language, remembering those important dates will be essential. This language will place a deeper influence within a smaller set of days which will impact the entire year. The gift(s) does not need to be expensive or elaborate, just impactful. Small thoughtful items will mean so much to this person whose primary love language is receiving gifts.
If you are with a person who’s love language is “quality time,” giving them your undivided attention is the way to show them love. To share time while tending to chores, using a cell phone or working on a computer does not provide the love language needed for this person. It is important that when you are giving quality time that you do not divide their time with any other distractions. Turn off the TV, put your phone away and sit by them and listen to the conversation as well as participating. Giving short periods of quality time will gain you a large bag of points.
We all know how important physical touch can be for people of all ages. The calming touch of a parent to an infant right after its birth, the healing kiss of a parent when a child gets a boo-boo, and the touch of a loved one to an aging parent when they are unable to help themselves.
In marriage, the love languages of “physical touch” can be: a back rubbing after a hard day, touching your spouse’s leg as they’re driving, holding hands as you are walking down the beach, and a gentle kiss when they arrive home. If physical touch is the primary love language of your spouse, it is important to reach out and touch them. The support through physical touch can remove some of the sting of a hard day.
What is your love language and that of your loved one?