Have you ever had the experience where you expressed your love in some form and it was not received as such? Perhaps it was this past Christmas where you could literally see the shoulders of your honey just drop when he or she opened the gift you thought was just perfect! Well, believe it or not, people speak different love languages, and our love tank can be filled or emptied based on how we communicate with our lover’s emotional language. When the love tank is empty, we tend to feel used and unloved. So according to Gary Chapman, these are five love languages we use to fill our emotional tanks.
#1: Words of Affirmation
Compliments, words of encouragement, and requests rather than demands all affirm the self-worth of your lover. They create intimacy, heal wounds, and bring out the full potential of your other half.
#2: Quality Time
Spending quality time together through sharing, listening, and participating in joint meaningful activities communicates that we truly care for and enjoy each other.
#3: Receiving Gifts
Gifts are visual symbols of love, whether they are items you purchased or made, or are merely your own presence made available to your sweetheart. Gifts demonstrate that you care, and they represent the value of the relationship.
#4: Acts of Service
Criticism of your love one’s failure to do things for you may be an indication that “acts of service” is your primary love language. Acts of service should never be coerced (You will do this or you will be sorry!), but should be freely given without manipulation or guilt (If you were a good man/woman you would do this for me…). It should also be received in the same spirit, and completed as requested.
#5: Physical Touch
Physical touch, as a gesture of love, reaches to the depths of our being. As a love language, it is a powerful form of communication from the smallest touch on the shoulder to the most passionate kiss.
So how do I determine my love language?
So, what if like me your love tank overflows when your lover walks in with your favorite flowers for no special reason, kisses you tells you how sexy you look in your tees and sweats while you cook dinner, washes your car, snuggles with you after dinner to watch the Real Housewives of whatever… and ends your day with mind shattering sex? Wishful thinking :), but that just about covers the 5 love languages!
But let’s get real. To find out what your dominant love language is, ask yourself these three questions.
- What is it that your lover does or not do that hurts you most deeply?
(The opposite of what hurts you most is most likely your love language).
- What is the one request you make most often of your lover?
(This is the thing that makes you feel most loved).
- What is the most natural (regular) way that you express your love to your sweetheart?
(This may be an indication of what would also make you feel loved).
Remember, love is a choice. Choosing to love in the language of our sweethearts has many benefits. It can help heal past wounds and provide a sense of security, self-worth, and significance.
From the book: The Five Love Languages – How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate by Gary Chapman.See some words or phrases that you don't understand? Check out The Dragon's Lexicon.