Let’s talk about love languages. Love is a tricky thing for most of us, and at any age. Whenever we meet somebody, the steps we take before we get to feeling love for them may be many, but would it be quicker if we would know their love language? Would we be better partners if we could understand how to meet another person’s needs? And they, ours?
This is precisely what the theory of the 5 love languages is trying to explore. The concept was created by Gary Chapman in 1992 when he published the book “The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts”. He highlights the idea that not everyone expresses love in the same way, but that doesn’t mean they don’t love us, they just don’t love LIKE us. Thus, what he is trying to explain are the different ways of expressing and receiving love.
Words of affirmation
If you fall under this category that means you’re a very verbally stimulated person. Receiving words of encouragement, support or admiration is how you feel you’re loved. This category also includes compliments as well as texting, or any sort of social media interaction. You feel understood and appreciated when told so. And you tend to never forget what was told to you, as it fuels your emotions towards that person. After all, communication is key.
What can be more precious than time well spent? And how else is time well spent if not in the company of the ones we love? People who are in this category feel most loved when their partner spends time with them, be it while doing activities, or just hanging out. They like knowing that their presence is important, valued and appreciated and that they have their full attention.
Acts of service
As it is often said, “actions speak louder than words”. And this is exactly what the person with this type of love language believes. They value a helping hand in times of need, or just in general. They want a partner they can rely on and who will make life a little easier for them.
Sometimes a material show of appreciation is the most straight-forward way of showing love. And the receiver feels loved in return. People who enjoy receiving gifts feel most loved when they have concrete, physical evidence of how someone feels for them. Gifts don’t always mean expensive things, but rather little things that made you think of them, that you thought they might like. This will in turn make them feel appreciated, as they will always associate the present with the loved one.
Body language is often more expressive than actual words. The people in this category believe love is expressed through touch, through physical signs of affection. This, of course, can range from holding hands, to being intimate with their partner. But what’s most important is that physical closeness must be sprinkled throughout the day as they feel closer to a person they are intangible contact with. Their emotional happiness resides in feeling desired by their partner and they thrive off the comfort and warmth that comes with it.
So, are love languages all we need to know in order to make another person happy and make the relationship last? Of course not. People are way more complex than this, and they can change their preferences. However, these can help us understand how other people need to be shown, love. After all, not loving somebody the way they feel loved, can make them question the validity of your feelings.
You can find out what your love language is here. But remember: you have to love someone with their love language, not yours!