The Five Love Languages
The “Five Love Languages” is a great book by Senior Pastor Gary Chapman that has changed the way we do things as a couple. It’s very easy to read and incorporate the knowledge into your life. I loved it so much that I sent it to my two married kids and their spouses.
The five love languages are gifts, quality time, words of affirmation, acts of service, and physical touch. Let’s look at each of them and an example of how love can be expressed in this language.
Gifts are physical tokens of appreciation. They can, but don’t have to be expensive. Jewelry is the perfect example for expressing this particular love language. Go ahead and buy that pair of earrings for your spouse’s birthday, or grab some flowers and a cute stuffed animal for Valentine’s Day.
For those whose love language is quality time, the best way to show you care is to spend intentional time with your significant other. Go for a walk, take couples dance lessons, or if it’s something you both enjoy, work in the garden together. Any way you can find to spend time together will work. This could even be driving to and from work together, talking about your day as you drive.
Words Of Affirmation
Words of affirmation may sound fancy, but it simply means telling your partner you care by giving them compliments or acknowledging something about their actions. Tell her she looks pretty in her new dress or that dinner was great! Tell your favorite guy that he’s rocking those jeans or that you really appreciate that he changed the oil in your car. Use your words to show your love.
Acts Of Service
Acts of service mean you do something for your loved one to show you care. This could be a big gesture like painting the house while your wife is away for a few days, but it can also be little things like making sure the coffee maker is all filled up and set to go in the morning, which Phil always does, or taking out the trash. Cooking is one of my acts of service.
The last love language is physical touch. I’m sure you already guessed this is all about physical affection.
Hugs, kisses and hour-long massages are the perfect way to show your love, but even simple acts like holding hands or massaging their feet while watching TV won’t go unnoticed.
Your Love Language and Your Partner’s Love Language
I highly recommend reading Gary Chapman’s book, but you can get a few hints from studying the paragraphs above. As you were reading through the examples of the different love languages, you probably recognized one or two that you identified with more than the others. I’m almost ashamed to say it because it sounds so materialistic but my first love language preference is gifts. Quality time or physical affection may be a lot more meaningful to you as the reader.
Go back and read through them again with your partner in mind. There are some clues there as to what their love language might be. How does he show affection? It can be an eye-opening experience if the two of you speak different love languages, which is the case in our house! If your language is words of affirmation and his is acts of service, you may be disappointed that he doesn’t tell you often how much he loves you or how cute you look. Instead, he may show his love by making sure your car has gas or by getting up early to make sure your coffee is ready before you wake up. Your partner’s way of expressing love can give you clues as to what his or her love language is.
Realizing that there are different ways to show love and affection helps us recognize how the other one shows their love.
Expressing Love and Romance In The Right “Language”
After determining both of your love languages, you can take it a step further. Adjust how you express love and romance to be more in line with your partner’s love language. If he’s all about acts of service, cook him a nice meal, or make sure the toys in the living room are picked up so the two of you can relax in the living room after the kids go to bed.
Give it a try to see which of the love languages seems to speak to your partner. If you’ve already got an idea, try it out and see what happens! In the book, Gary talks about a couple whose relationship was on the brink of divorce and how the husband began using the love language of his partner (without telling her he was doing so). Doing so actually saved this couple’s marriage and brought back romance to their life.
Simple Things You Can Do To Romance Your Sweetheart Every Day
Romance isn’t just special days like your wedding anniversary or Valentine’s Day. There are lots of simple little things you can do every single day to show the most important person in your life that you are. It’s hard to keep the passion alive when we’re busy raising kids, paying off mortgages and building career. Romance is often the last thing on our mind after a long day working and driving the kids from one after-school activity to the next.
Let’s look at some of those little things you can do on a daily basis to romance your honey.
Romance With Words
Let’s start with words. Those can be either spoken or written words. In other words, tell your partner that you love him or her every single day. But don’t just stop there. Talk about how much you appreciate what the other one does, and how good they look. Think of what you would like to hear and make sure you verbalize what you like about the other person. It doesn’t take much time or effort, but makes a big difference in the self-esteem and feel of self-worth of your spouse. We all want to feel appreciated and hearing those words will do just that.
If you don’t feel comfortable with this idea, or you’re not around your partner much during the day, share your romance with written words. Write a little love note and hide it in your partner’s lunch box, brief case or purse to find during the day. Shoot them a quick email or text to let them know you’re thinking about them. Or go old school and write a love letter.
No matter how you do it, use your words and keep the romance alive.
Romance With Acts of Kindness
Of course, it isn’t just about the words. You can also show your love and appreciation in the things you do for your partner. Pay attention throughout the day and see what you can do to make his or her life easier. Go get gas in the car or run to the grocery store to pick up some milk.
Surprise your significant other with coffee in bed in the morning, or send them off to take a nap or a long shower while you do a few quiet chores. Acts of kindness can be as simple as taking out the trash or as big as rearranging the living room to make room for her new treadmill. It seems that whenever I leave town for a couple of days or even when I’m off to Divaz practice, something nice gets done around the house! How big or small your acts of affection are really doesn’t matter as long as you make it a point to do something special for your loved one each day.
Romance With Physical Affection
Last but not least, let’s talk about physical affection. Kiss your partner good morning and give him or her a quick hug while you’re both getting ready for the day. Like the other shows of romance we talked about here, this doesn’t have to be a big deal. Yes, it’s nice if you can take 30 minutes to give your partner a long massage, or if the two of you can sneak off to the bedroom for a while on a lazy Sunday afternoon. But it doesn’t have to be just sexual. Holding hands while you walk to the car or snuggling on the couch while you watch TV are also great ways to show physical affection. That reminds me, we need a new sofa!
Some days it’s a lot harder to be romantic than others. We all have lousy days and sometimes just don’t feel like putting in the time and effort. Additionally, we may be pissed off at something our partner did. Do something anyway. Relationships take work as does keeping the romance alive. It shows your partner you still care and still want to make him or her feel loved.
But what if your partner doesn’t romance you back? We’ll discuss that in another blog post soon.
For now, think of this article as some inspiration to help you get started. Give a few of these ideas a try, but feel free to come up with things to do that mean something to you and your sweetheart. Just make an effort to do something every day to keep the romance alive.