Focus on the Five Love Languages
This month I want to focus on Dr. Gary Chapman’s book, The Five Love Languages. Dr. Chapman says every person has an “emotional tank” waiting to be filled with love. He indicates there are five ways that people speak and understand emotional love. The following is a list of the five love languages. Dr. Chapman indicates that each person may have more than one love language and within each of the love languages there are many dialects.
Five Love Languages
- Words of Affirmation – this includes encouraging words, compliments, kind tone of voice, making requests rather than demands, and expressing appreciation.
- Quality Time – this language consists of quality conversations (using listening skills), sympathetic listening, giving undivided attention, quality activities like going for a walk, listening to music, picnicking, gardening, shopping, or taking a vacation together.
- Receiving Gifts – encompasses gifts of money (the gifts do not necessarily need to be expensive) or of self (being there when your partner needs you).
- Acts of Service – Doing things you know your partner would like you to do (e.g. walk the dog, wash the dishes, clean the car, rake leaves). With this language, you seek to please your partner.
- Physical Touch – holding hands, kissing, embracing, massage, sexual intercourse are all ways of communicating emotional love to one’s partner.
Note: Dr. Chapman believes that physical touch can make or break a relationship. It can communicate love or hate. To the person whose primary love language is physical touch, the message projected through touch will be far louder than the words “I hate you” or “I love you.”
Dr. Chapman says that relationships develop better when we understand each other. He believes that focusing on the five love languages give us important insights into the ways we all express and experience the emotion of love.