Well, did you ever consider that people might speak different love languages? In other words, the way people communicate and understand love.
Here is the shocking truth; your love language and that of your partners may be as different as Chinese and English.
Do you know your partners love language?
You may be showing love to your partner and be completely sincere but if you are not communicating in a way that your partner understands love, it’s absolutely no use!
We must be willing to learn our spouses love language if we are to be effective communicators of love – Dr Gary Chapman
Understanding the love languages is the key to having a successful, long lasting and loving relationship.
It makes sense right? If you are showing love to your partner in a way that they do not understand love, then chances are it’s not going to be very effective.
Read this article to find out what the 5 love languages are and how important they are in your relationship.
What are the different love languages?
There are five love languages – five ways that people understand and communicate love.
1. Words of Affirmation
2. Quality Time
3. Receiving Gifts
4. Acts of service
5. Physical Touch
Once you learn to speak your partners love language – you will have discovered the secret to a long-lasting and loving relationship.
1. Words of Affirmation
Words of affirmation and verbal compliments are powerful communicators of love.
Perhaps your partner tells you “I do everything for you, I cook for you, I clean the house for you, I buy you nice gifts and I give you endless affection”…
But all you really want him or her to say is: “I am proud of you, you look good and I appreciate you”.
This is a typical example of a difference in love languages. Your partner feels like he/she shows you love in every way possible! But if they are missing the one way you truly feel loved, all their efforts will be for nothing.
You will not feel loved by your partner and as a result they will probably think that their efforts are useless.
If your love language is words of affirmation then you could feel loved from the following things;
Simple, straightforward statements of affirmation such as “You look great in that outfit” or “I am so grateful that you are in my life”
Encouraging words such as “yes, I really mean it, you did such a great job yesterday”.
Kind words said with tenderness such as “It would be my pleasure to wash the dishes tonight” or “I really appreciate you picking up my laundry”.
If your partners love language is words of affirmation, you will be genuinely surprised how loved they will feel when you use the type of statements above.
2. Quality time
If quality time is your primary love language then your biggest desire will be to spend time with your partner and have their undivided attention.
The statements in box A should resonate with you more than those in box B.
Spending time with my partner makes me happy
I love when my partner shows interest in the things I like to do
I love it when my partner gives me their undivided attention
I love it when my partner listens to me.
I love it when my partner helps me clean the house
I love it when my partner tells me they appreciate me
I know my partner loves me when he/she buys me gifts
I feel loved when my partner cuddles me
If your partners love language is quality time but you show them love by doing the things in box B, chances are your partner complains to you on a regular basis or tells you that they don’t feel like you spend enough time with them.
Does this sound like your relationship?
Do you feel like you show your partner love everyday but they just don’t seem to appreciate or notice it?
Well, the good news is, there is so much hope for your relationship! If you learn your partners love language, you will discover a new and enriching side to your relationship where you will both feel loved and fulfilled.
3. Receiving gifts
An attitude of love is always associated with the concept of giving.
You can give to another person in countless ways. However if your partners primary love language is receiving gifts, there is no greater way to show them love than by giving them tangible and thoughtful gifts.
Giving a gift will show your partner that you were thinking of them. The gift is a symbol of that thought.
‘Receiving gifts” is one of the easiest love languages to learn. All you have to do is become a consistent and thoughtful gift giver. You can buy, find or make gifts – it is not about the gift itself but the thought behind it.
Gifts do not need to be expensive. You can cut out a heart out of a piece of newspaper, write “I love you” on it and give it to your partner.
Gifts are all about showing your partner that you thought about them.
If your partners love language is receiving gifts then giving your partner a gift will make him/her feel loved, wanted and cared about. But remember, if this is not your partner’s love language, giving gifts will have little impact on how loved they feel.
4. Acts of Service
If your love language is acts of service then you will feel loved when other people do things for you, but only if done with a happy heart.
Knowing that your partner has put in time, energy, planning, thought and effort to do something especially for you will speak louder than any words, acts of affection or gift.
Here is an example of someone whose primary love language is acts of service.
Ben asked James “Do you feel loved by Lisa?”
James replied “Absolutely! She cooks for me, cleans for me, she is the best housekeeper in the world. I know that she loves me”.
Notice how James did not mention that Lisa gives him great gifts, gives him affection or quality time? James feels loved when Lisa shows him acts of service. That is how he understands and receives love so that is what stands out to him.
It is acts of service that he noticed and appreciates most.
If your partners primary love language is acts of service and you show your love by buying them gifts, there is a good chance that they do not feel completely fulfilled. In fact, they probably tell you all the time that you do not do enough for them!
5. Physical Touch
A tender hug will communicate love to anybody but it will shout love to the person whose primary love language is physical touch.
If you did not grow up in a ‘touching’ family and your love language is not physical touch then it may be hard for you to communicate love in this way.
But if this is your partners love language, it is absolutely necessary that you learn to show love in this way.
Physical touch can mean sitting close to your partner while watching movie, putting your hand on his/her shoulder as you walk past them, kissing, touching each other when you leave the house and come home, hugging and holding hands.
You are only limited by your imagination.
A kiss may seem insignificant to you but will be very important for your partner if physical touch is their primary love language.
What is your love language?
Probably one of these love languages stood out for you! You thought; YES, this is my definition of love.
Is this love language something that you could just not live without?
Often we have a secondary love language too, so you may find that another love language resonates with you as well.
A great way to identify your love language is to think about the ways in which you most often communicate love to other people. How we show love to others often reflects our own love language. This is also a great way to identify your partners love language.
The most important thing to remember is that how you feel loved is not necessarily the same for another person.
Sometimes it may seem so obvious to you that you cannot understand how somebody can feel loved in a different way. It might be hard for you to relate to another love language because to you, it just does not translate to love.
This is often why a lot of couples do not feel loved by one another. They both feel like they are trying their best, but as long as they do not speak each other’s love languages, their efforts are useless.
This is the same for your relationship. So use this newfound knowledge in your relationship and you will see your relationship transform into a loving and long lasting one.
Don’t stop here
Understanding the love languages is so important for your relationship.
If you would like to discover and learn more about it, I encourage you to read Dr Gary Chapman’s book “The Five Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts” (only 8 dollars on Amazon).
This book will explain everything you need to know in order to speak your partners love language effectively.
This book also includes the Five Love languages personal assessment tool so that you can find out exactly what your love language is as well as your partners.
Was this article an eye-opener for you? Do you think this is the secret to loving and long lasting relationships?