Are we even speaking the same language?
Over the past three weeks I’ve been reviewing the important components of extraordinary relationships.
In week one I talked about the importance of being emotionally healthy before you start dating. Week two I shared how to create clarity in your dating life. Last week I laid out the Four Cornerstones of Great Relationships.
Communication is a major part of the Intellectual Cornerstone. It encompasses so much of our daily interactions with each other.
There’s more than just talking. It includes body language, facial expressions, tone of voice, volume, rate, articulation, pronunciation, and fluency.
But that’s not all. There’s another component necessary to really be able to connect deeply with your mate.
I like to break this next part of communication out into its own category because it’s so important.
It goes beyond communication skills, facial expressions, and body language.
Today I want to talk about the Five Love Languages. This concept comes from a book of the same name by Gary Chapman.
If you haven’t read it, click on the book title or the link below and it will take you directly to Amazon where you can order a copy for yourself.
What are the Five Love Languages? They are Acts of Service, Words of Affirmation, Gifts, Quality Time, and Physical Touch.
I’ll give you a brief description of each but for a more in depth understanding and to discover your primary love language, please check out the book.
Acts of Service
Quite literally, it’s just as the name implies. Acts of service is generally doing something for someone else.
It can be as simple as getting the mail or taking the garbage out, to washing the car, doing the laundry, or fixing something around the house.
It can be greater things like running errands, planning a trip, volunteering for a project at church, or community service.
To state it differently, it’s being in service to others out of the goodness of your heart.
Words of Affirmation
This love language is often expressed with a “Thank You,” or “you look beautiful”, or “I love your dress.”
It can also be “you’re doing a great job”, “keep up the good work”, “I appreciate you”, and “I love you.”
Words of affirmation are used to build someone up mentally and emotionally. You’re affirming that they bring value to you.
This can be confusing at times. So often we think of gifts as having to go out and buy something.
In fact, gifts can be a simple note posted on the mirror in the morning, a card, or flowers picked from your own garden.
Gift givers will generally put a lot of thought into the gifts they give because they make it special and personal.
This is the gift of time. Quality time is about spending time together. It’s not necessarily about doing something special like a night on the town or a fancy dinner.
Quality time is about spending undistracted time together. No phones, no kids, no pets, or other external distractions. This can be as little as 15 or 20 minutes together.
It can be scheduled or unscheduled. This time can be used for talking and reconnecting after a crazy busy week. It can be snuggling up watching a movie or it can be a night on the town.
The point is that you’re spending time together, enjoying each other’s company.
This isn’t about sex, although sex can be a part of it. Those whose primary love language is physical touch like to hold hands and sit close to their partner.
When you meet someone that has physical touch as their primary language, it will be fairly obvious. Even if they don’t know you they will likely initiate physical contact in a conversation.
They may reach out and touch your hand, arm, or shoulder. There is nothing sexual about it. It’s just their way of connecting on a little deeper level.
This is just a thumbnail sketch of the five love languages. I highly recommend reading the book to get a much deeper understanding of each language and how to read other people.
Why is this important to know?
While it’s possible that you can learn how to speak your partners love language, it’s far easier to communicate when you both speak the same language naturally.
From experience, your ability to communicate your love for your partner is significantly enhanced when you speak the same love language.
Next week let’s talk about chemistry. Is it all that it’s cracked to be? Do you even know how to recognize it if you have it?
I hope I’ve given you some ideas to make healthier dating and relationship decisions. I’ll see you next week. Until then, have a great and blessed day.