Updated: Oct 12, 2019
The popular relationship book "The Five Love Languages," by Dr. Gary Chapman posits that there are five universal ways that people view and express love. After 30 years of couples counselling, Chapman noticed five specific patterns in the way people give and receive love.
According to Chapman, each person has one primary and one secondary love language. He also asserts that people give love in the way they prefer to receive love.
Since you might not have the same love languages as your partner and other loved ones when it comes to giving and receiving love, your relationships might be conflictual. By recognizing your partners' inherent love language, as well as your own, you can begin to understand how to repair your relationships.
Five Love Languages
1. Words of Affirmation Words are deeply valued in this love language. Hearing "I love you" and other compliments are valued the most. On the opposite end, negative or insulting comments cut deep and won't be easily forgiven.
2. Quality Time This love language is all about giving undivided attention. Being your loved one's main focus leaves quality timers feeling satisfied and comforted. Distractions, postponed dates, or the failure to listen can be especially hurtful in this love language.
3. Receiving Gifts People who value this love language feel most loved when they receive a tangible gift. A meaningful or thoughtful present makes them feel appreciated. Not giving a thoughtful gift is offensive in this love language.
4. Acts of Service For people who speak the love language of service lending a helping hand shows you really care. Actions speak louder than words. People who prefer this love language have little tolerance for people who break promises or who seem lazy.
5. Physical Touch To this love language, nothing speaks more deeply than appropriate touch. Not only in the bedroom, every day physical touch like hand-holding, kissing or affirming physical contact is greatly appreciated. Physical abuse is an absolute deal breaker in this love language.
Reflecting upon the five love languages above, what do you sense your first and second preferences are? (You can take a quiz to determine what your personal love languages are HERE.)
Reflect upon how your top two love languages have coloured your expectations, upsets and levels of appreciation in your relationships.