The first time I ever heard of The Five Love Languages of Dr. Gary Chapman was in a Sunday School class the year after my husband and I got married. I would love to say that we have it all figured out and never let our partner’s love tank get low, but the truth is that life happens sometimes.
With three kids, work, and almost 18 years of wedded bliss, sometimes I forget to focus on his love language. And sometimes he forgets, too. But, when I feel my love tank is a little low, its usually a sign that his is, too. A little focus and a little bit of attention to love languages and everything seems right with the world again. But, if you don’t know the love languages of your partner (or yourself!), it can feel impossible to get things back on track.
The first thing to do is go to https://www.5lovelanguages.com/quizzes/ and discover your love language. Then send the link so your spouse can take the quiz, too.
Discuss your love languages with each other and then focus on them. It’s important to note that we need all the love languages, not just the primary and secondary, but we do need more of those. So, at this point, you are probably wondering what the Five Love Languages are, right?
Okay, here you go:
The Five Love Languages are Physical Touch, Words of Affirmation, Quality Time, Gifts, and Acts of Service. They are pretty much what they sound like, but lets get a little more creative, and stretch your mind and the way we look at them.
For instance, with Physical Touch, people always think about sex. Well, that’s one way to accomplish it, but there is also kissing, hugging, holding hands, giving high-fives, giving a pat on the back (or a slap on the bottom!), wrestling, tickling, etc. I think you get the picture. Anything that involves physical contact qualifies as Physical Touch. So, think outside of the “sex” box and do something a little different.
To give Words of Affirmation, just use positive, encouraging words. Simple, right? Yes, but don’t just use your vocal cords. Write little notes and leave them everywhere – in his car, in his lunchbox, in his wallet, on the fog-filled mirror in the bathroom, etc. I, myself, find text messages and leaving voicemails are easy ways to give Words of Affirmation to my husband and I’m not limited to the time that he is with me. When he crosses my mind during the day, its an easy way to let him know that I am thinking about him and to fill his love tank.
For Quality Time, plan some time together just the two of you. I know this can be difficult if you have kids, especially during deployments, but with a little ingenuity, you can make it happen. Try to plan something after the kids are in bed or in school. Even 10 minutes can go a long way. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy. Have dessert together, look at the stars together, play a game, pull out a conversation starter. Talk together – and maybe try to avoid talking about the kids for just a few minutes. The important thing is to look into your spouse’s face and listen to them. Try to connect without focusing on kids for a minute.
Gifts are not nearly as complicated as it sounds. These gifts don’t need to be expensive, just something tangible to remind your special someone that you have thought of them. It could be their favorite candy bar, a greeting card, a coupon book for special activities together, even a small token like a penny from their birth year would be a meaningful gift for someone whose love language is gifts. Again, be creative and remember the little things go a long way.
Many times, moms tell me that their love language has changed over time. They may have taken the quiz at the beginning of their marriage and their primary language was one thing, then after having kids and a few years down the road, they take the quiz again to find their primary love language has shifted to Acts of Service. This is usually an easy one – just look for something to do and do it. If your spouse typically cleans out the car, then clean out the car for him one week. If he typically washes towels, wash the towels. Vacuum the floor, load the dishwasher, fold the laundry & put it away, just do something! Anything will be appreciated by the one whose love language is Acts of Service.
Now that you know all about the Love Languages, make sure to figure out your and your partner’s primary and secondary love language and get to work. Remember we all need all of them, but there should be a special focus on the primary and secondary to keep our love tanks full. This is one way to know that you are truly loving your spouse well. Written By: Odona Ezell-Whiddon