The Five Love Languages : A Guide

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Love can be a difficult thing to express at times. Everyone gives and receives love differently, and it’s important to be able to give and receive the love you personally desire. Knowing your partners’, friends’, and families’ love languages is important if you want them to feel appreciated, just as you would like to feel loved and appreciated by them.

This guide will walk you through the five love languages, so you can fill every relationship in your life with love and gratitude! 

What Are the Five Love Languages?

Love languages are ways that people express their love. Each individual is different and has different needs when it comes to giving and receiving love. Author Gary Chapman recognized these trends and established the five love languages as a basis for understanding and interpreting different ways to love!

This doesn’t mean that we only have one preferred love language and that the other languages don’t matter. We just want to be aware of the one or more of these languages that really stand out for us as the one(s) we most prefer to give or receive love.

  1. Words of Affirmation
  2. Physical Touch
  3. Quality Time
  4. Acts of Service
  5. Receiving/Giving Gifts

Words of Affirmation

If you or your partner identify with words of affirmation as your top love language, that simply means you appreciate spoken or written words to convey or receive love. There is a ton of power behind words, and people who identify with this love language place a lot of emphasis and importance on what is said to them. Compliments and gratitude conveyed through words or letters will go a long way. Words of affirmation are words (written or spoken) that are used to demonstrate your appreciation, love, respect, or admiration for another. If you identify with words of affirmation as your love language, you may be good at noticing positive details about your loved ones and hope in turn they offer compliments and kind words to you as well. Some examples of words of affirmation include, “I am grateful for you,” “Thank you for the delicious meal you made,” or even “You look great today!” Remember, even a small sweet comment can go a long way because words can really penetrate and even shift a sour mood. 

Physical Touch 

Most humans desire physical touch on some level. However, if you identify with physical touch as your top love language, that means you feel love deeply though either giving or receiving physical touch. This doesnt necessarily mean sex, but can include gestures like hugs, hand holding, massage, cuddling, and even sex. Sex is a little more complicated than other types of touch, however it can also be a critical way that you may prefer to connect physically, while in the process also reinforcing your emotional intimacy with your partner. Some people really feel most loved when they receive physical affection and touch on a regular basis. Even in the midst of verbal conflict, physical touch can break through the misunderstandings and melt away tension.

Quality Time

Time is precious! If you value quality time as your love language that means at the end of the day you feel the most loved and appreciated when you receive attention from your loved one. Being present and in the moment together means the most to those who identify with this love language, and they value quality time over other gestures. If this is you or your partner’s love language, then setting aside special quality time to dedicate to one another will feel deeply fulfilling and will help you feel appreciated and loved.  Some ways to incorporate quality time with your partner include asking about each other’s day and actively listening, as well as staying attuned and in the moment, not distracted by technology or household tasks, and making plans to have fun together. Instead of focusing on your phone at the end of the day, turn the social media off at a certain point and go spend some 1 on 1 time with your partner!

Acts of Service

Often small acts of service are all it takes to make someone feel special. If acts of service is your love language, you desire for your partner to provide an act or give up their time on your behalf. You feel most loved and noticed when your partner goes out of their way to make you feel loved through action. Give and take is part of any relationship, but if your partner relates to acts of service, there are a few things you can do to make them feel loved including cooking them a meal, taking over a task they don’t enjoy to lighten their load, and even paying attention to their preferences, big or small. Little gestures like offering your partner a cup of coffee just how they like it goes a long way toward them feeling loved and seen. 

Receiving/Giving Gifts

Regardless of your love language, everyone loves giving and receiving gifts. If your partner identifies with this love language it means they feel the most noticed when receiving a tangible item, big or small. This love language boils down to the sentimental nature of how material gifts can serve as keepsake reminders and symbols of your love. Because they are physical items, they can continue to bring you joy and remind you of your partner.   If you or your partner relate to giving or receiving gifts, some ideas you can keep in your back pocket include sending flowers, dropping off lunch to your partner at work, or buying them something that reminds you of them, or even an item you know they’ve have had their eye on!

Why Love Languages Are Important

So now you learned the love languages, but why are they so important? Knowing not only yours but your partner’s preferred love languages will allow you to communicate and better meet each other’s needs when you have a deeper understanding of what each of you requires to feel the most loved and appreciated.  Knowing your partner’s preferred love languages will help you create empathy in your relationship and be more attuned to their needs and desires on a deeper level, allowing you to provide for them in the way they need to feel significant. It will also help you maintain intimacy and connection in your relationship, leading to a deeper, more ultimately fulfilling relationship. 

About Bozhena Evans | BE Therapy

BE therapy is located in Arvada, Colorado and we specialize in therapy for anxiety, depression, couples, individuals, and everything in between! It is my goal to help guide you through difficult times in your personal life, marriage, or romantic situation. Whatever you need, we are here to help you work through it or heal and move on. You’re not alone in your struggles, and I am here to help you manage your challenges!