Improved Communication In Relationships
Understanding and accepting that your love language might be different from your partner is already a huge step to improving communication in a relationship.
And learning to speak someone elses love language can help improve communication in your relationship.
You might ask yourself: Why doesnt he/she understand that I want to go out for dinner and a movie, when its my favorite thing to do? The answer is because those things arent your partners favorite.
So you can try speaking their love language and see how it goes.
It will make them feel appreciated and loved, which will make them more attracted to you and your relationship.
Love Language : Acts Of Service
Ask yourself, how do you feel when your partner helps you with tasks that reduce your burden or ease your stress?
Examples: Your partner does a chore for you, runs an errand for you, or takes care of something without having to be asked?
If these things make you feel the most loved and happier, acts of service may be your primary love language.
What Are Love Languages
The concept of love languages was first introduced by Dr. Gary Chapman, a renowned marriage counsellor, after 20 years of helping couples save their marriages in his book, The Five Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts.
According to Chapman, there are five ways to express and receive love. And everyone has a unique love language. In other words, people value different ways of expressing love.
Likewise, relationship experts say its important to know how to show love to your partner in a relationship.
In other words, your relationship may head for the rocks if both partners do not understand each others love languages.
- Dr. Gary Chapman pioneered the concept of love languages in his bookThe Five Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts.These languages communicate how people in an intimate relationship want to give and receive love.
- The five love languages are words of affirmation, physical touch, quality time, gifts, and acts of service.
- People often have a mix of love languages. However, there is usually a dominant onewhile others are subservient.
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How To Identify Your Love Language
In a relationship, do you feel more loved when your partner:
- Tells you, “I love you,” or praises something you did?
- Surprises you with a meaningful gift?
- Plans a trip for just the two of you?
- Runs the errands or does the laundry?
- Holds your hand while you’re walking?
Answering these questions could give you a hint as to what your love language might be. You could also try to recall the sorts of things you ask for in a relationship or consider how you express love to your partner. Chapman also offers an online 30-question quiz to help you determine your dominant love language.
Your partner’s love language might not be the same as yours. When couples have different primary love languages, there are bound to be misunderstandings. However, if your partner learns to speak your love language , they will likely feel loved, appreciated, and, ultimately, happier in the relationship.
How To Use Love Languages In Your Nonromantic Relationships
The love languages apply to all relationships, not just romantic relationships. The fact is, everyone likes to be loved, Heller says.
To use the love languages framework in a nonromantic relationship, first observe how someone shows that they care for you. This will tell you their love language and what forms of affection will resonate most.
For example, does your friend typically coordinate your get-togethers? Reciprocate with an act of service, like making the dinner reservations the next time you meet up. Does your coworker pick up coffee for you without being asked? Take them out to lunch to return the gift.
Love Language #: Words Of Affirmation
The person who lists words of affirmation as their primary love language is almost the opposite of those that list acts of service they value words more than actions. What they say and what others say to them are the telltale sign of love and appreciation. Generally, this person wants and gives verbal compliments, such as:
- “You are so good at fixing stuff.”
- “You always know exactly what to say to me.”
- “I really like that outfit on you.”
Sprinkle in a few of these every day and those around you whose love language is words of affirmation will be pumped up for days. On the flip side, when these types of words aren’t said, they may feel there is a lack of love.
Love Language Criticisms To Consider
The five love languages provide a great framework for understanding your relationship and each other, but they dont necessarily represent exactly how everyone wants to give and show love.
Chances are that you resonate strongly with more than one of the love languages and your partner and other loved ones do, too.
Gender and cultural norms have also shifted quite a bit since the love languages were first introduced, and how we express love and how we want to be loved has shifted right alongside.
While we all have our own ways of expressing love, they dont necessarily fit neatly into one of the five presets laid out in a time when women were historically more likely to serve and men were better equipped financially speaking to give gifts.
If youre looking for better understanding and communication in a relationship, the original love languages can be a good start, but there are other tools you can use.
A survey by Truity, a company offering personality tests, recently shared their finding of seven love styles based on a survey of over 500,000 people. Consider it an updated framework of the original love languages, plus two extras. You can fill out their online quiz to figure out your styles.
Theres also the Routes of Safety model created by Jake Ernst, MSW, RSW, a Toronto-based psychotherapist, thats in his words, trauma-informed love languages.
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How To Identify Your And Your Partners Primary Love Language
Your own love language might be different from your partners. The first step is to get familiar with the love language concept and then learn each others love languages.
To identify your own love language and that of your partner, you need to ask yourself and your partner a few questions:
TIP: If you want to know your primary love language, do Dr. Chapmans Free Love Language Quiz
Receiving Gifts As A Love Language
Receiving gifts is the final love language. It needs to be said that this love language is not reserved for the greedy or so-called gold diggers.
For someone whose love language is gifts, it goes way beyond just wanting stuff. For this person, its all about the meaning behind the gift and the thought that went into it. No diamonds or luxury cars are required.
Signs that receiving gifts is your love language:
- When it comes to gift-giving, you put in the time to choose the most thoughtful gift.
- You treasure everything a partner gives you, no matter how small.
- Youre hurt when someone you love doesnt commemorate an event with a thoughtful token.
Showing love through gifts isnt about extravagance. A small memento will be just as appreciated because big or small, a gift is a tangible reminder that they were thought of and are loved.
Here are some ways to show love to someone whose love language is receiving gifts:
- Picking up their favorite pastry or candy on your way home.
- Surprising them with flowers whether store-bought or picked from the side of the road.
- Giving them a thoughtful greeting card just because.
- Bringing your BFF a keepsake from your early friendship, like a picture from your first road trip.
- Choosing gifts that are personal to your relationship.
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What Is My Love Language
There are a couple ways to determine your own love language.
The first being taking “The Love Language” quiz. This test is from the official love languages website and asks a series of this-or-that questions to identify your primary love language. Once you finish the quiz, it gives percentages to compare how much your style of love relates to the five love languages.
If you do not want to take the test, you can figure out your love language by making note of what makes you feel most loved. Consider how you prefer to receive affection from others. You may find out you have more than one love language.
All in all, your love language outlines your personal style of love. Although there are five classifications, a person’s love language is unique to them.
But Are The Five Love Languages Legit
Does having compatible love languages actually matter? And are they something you should consider when looking for a partner? We spoke with three relationship experts to get to the root of whether love languages are mere pop science, or if theres a solid base to how Chapman theorized the ways we express and receive love.
Stephen Snyder, MD, a sex and relationship therapist and host of the Relationship Doctor podcast, is skeptical about the theory’s legitimacy. Gary Chapman’s original Five Love Languages idea was based on his own informal review of his office notes from many years of counseling couples,” Snyder says. “There’s been some confirmatory research since then, but not a lot.”
Nevertheless, he gives the love languages some credit, noting, A counseling technique doesn’t typically go viral like that, unless there’s something to it.
In fact, its a tool that Vienna Pharaon, a licensed marriage and family therapist, uses with her clients. Ive had so many couples have aha moments around this research,” Pharaon says. “Its common to hear one partner say, I dont feel loved by my partner, and the other respond by saying, I just dont get it. I do everything possible to make sure you feel loved.
She continues, Sometimes the answer is as simple as: Youre speaking different love languages and missing the mark with each other.
Dating Someone Whose Love Language Is Words Of Affirmation
If words aren’t your thing and you’re dating someone whose love language is words of affirmation, don’t worry.
What matters is that you are tending to your words with care and getting down to the root of why you love your partner when you speak.
Here are a few tips to keep in mind for using words of affirmation:
Love Languages Promote Selflessness
When you are committed to learning someone else’s love language, you are focused on their needs rather than your own. This is the central premise of Chapman’s theory. Couples should work to learn their partner’s love language rather than trying to convince their partner to learn theirs. Ideally, both people will want to express love in a way that is meaningful to the other.
The entire purpose of exploring your love languages together is to learn how to love your partner in a way that is meaningful to them.
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How To Use Love Languages In Your Romantic Relationship
Once you know which love language resonates with your partner, you can find ways to practice it to show them love. And dont worry if you and your partner have different love languages, says Small: Most partners in a couple have different love languages the key is to focus on giving love in the way your partner receives it, not the way you do.
Here are some suggestions from Heller and Small to get you started.
What Are The 5 Love Languages
The five love languages are five different ways of expressing and receiving love: words of affirmation, quality time, receiving gifts, acts of service, and physical touch. Not everyone communicates love in the same way, and likewise, people have different ways they prefer to receive love. The concept of love languages was developed by Gary Chapman, Ph.D., in his book The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts, where he describes these five unique styles of communicating love, categories he distilled from his experience in marriage counseling and linguistics.
“We all may relate to most of these languages, but each of us has one that speaks to us the most,” marriage and family therapist Sunny Motamedi, Psy.D., tells mbg. “Discovering you and your partner’s primary love language and speaking that language regularly may a better understanding of each other’s needs and support each other’s growth.”
Here’s an overview of each of the five love languages Chapman describes:
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Are You Ready To Find Out More About Your Love Language
Now that you know about The 5 Love Languages®, you should have a good idea of which one is your primary language. Lets see what yours has to say about you!
What Are The Five Love Languages
Chapman’s book “The 5 Love Languages” was first published in 1992. Before writing the book, Chapman began to notice patterns in couples he was counseling. He realized that the couples were misunderstanding each other’s needs.
That led him to come up with five love languages, or ways that people in relationships express love. They are:
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Love Language : Quality Time
Ask yourself, how do you feel when your partner gives you their undivided attention and you engage in meaningful conversation or activities?
Examples: You and your partner have a date night, go on a trip together, or have a deep conversation?
If these things make you feel the most loved and happy, quality time may be your primary love language.
The Five Love Languages
|The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate|
The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate is a 1992 book by Gary Chapman. It outlines five general ways that romantic partners express and experience love, which Chapman calls “love languages”. They are acts of service, gift-giving, physical touch, quality time, and words of affirmation.
Love Language #: Receiving Gifts
The person who lists receiving gifts as their primary love language loves receiving meaningful or thoughtful gifts to feel loved and appreciated. Don’t worry: This doesn’t mean that you or those around you are materialistic. It just means that somewhere in life you learned that when someone gives to another, that it’s a great way to express love.
The thing to note is that the gift doesn’t have to be super costly. It simply needs to have thought and/or meaning behind it. For example, that person may love it if someone in their life brought home their favorite chicken from a restaurant that is from all the way across town, just because!
Love Language Quiz: What Is My Love Language
To find your type, read the following statements and mark the ones that deeply resonate with you. Filter it through: How do you show love? What do you complain about in a relationship? What do you request or actively need from your partner on a day-to-day basis? The one with the most statements you resonate with is your primary love language. If two or more languages are tied for first place , use the process of elimination and work your way down the list until you are left with one or two languages that you are not willing to part with.
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Its Never Too Late To Start Loving Better
Dating, married, single, or simply looking for better ways to connect with others? Theres a book for you!
They love each other, right? Then why do they always feel like they’re not on the same page?
The most common issue in any relationship is the communication barrier. Everyone experiences love differently, and it’s easy to miss the mark when it comes to showing that you care.
In his early years as a marriage counselor, Dr. Gary Chapman noticed that over and over, couples voiced similar complaints regarding their marriage.
One spouse would say something like, “I feel like he doesn’t love me.”
And the other would protest, “I don’t know what else to do. I’m doing everything I should be doing.”
Recognizing this pattern and remembering the rocky start in his own marriage, Dr. Chapman pored three years of session notes.
He asked himself, “When someone’s saying, ‘I feel like my spouse doesn’t love me,’ what did they want?”
Surprisingly, their answers fell into five different categories, revealing a unique approach for how to effectively love another person.
The premise is simple: Different people, with different personalities, give and receive love in different ways. Dr. Chapman called these ways of expressing and receiving love “The 5 Love Languages®.” He even wrote a best-selling book about it.
This revolutionary concept has improved millions of relationships across the globe.