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Growing up, a lot of people, especially women are told the only ways that people can show they love you is through physical touch. However, there are five key love languages that people speak as discovered by Dr. Gary Chapman. The five love languages are: words of affirmation, acts of service, receiving gifts, quality time, and physical touch. With so many ways of expressing and receiving love, new relationships can be especially confusing and are often exacerbated by our digital age of dating. 

For example, my main love languages are quality time and words of affirmation. This can make it especially hard for me when going through the “talking” stage of a new relationship. Without being able to spend that time with my potential partner and have them confirm that they want to be around me, I can withdraw until I eventually push them away. Knowing your partner’s love language(s) can prevent this needless communication barrier, so below I have listed a few ways to express each love language in the beginning phases of your relationship.

Words of Affirmation

The first love language we are going to look at is Words of Affirmation. For partners with this love language, that means you should be using words to assure them of your love. We’ve all seen the social media posts that say ‘secret ways people tell you they love you or they care’, so I’ve listed a few of the ones that I know are beneficial.

Phrases to Try:

“You look gorgeous/beautiful/handsome/dashing/etc.”

“I love spending time with you”

“You make me happy” 

“I’m listening”

“I remembered you liked this”

“This made me think of you”

Valentine heart candy
Photo by Laura Ockel from Unsplash

Acts of Service

Next is Acts of Service. These partners value actions over words. ‘Show me you care, don’t tell me it’ is their MO, so here are some acts of service that you can try with your partner as you get more comfortable being in each other’s lives. These ideas are also good for those beginning stages.

Actions to Try:

  • Pick them up for dates
  • Pick up the check when you eat out
  • Make them a playlist that reminds you of them 
  • Plan dates 
  • Ask how you can best help them 
  • Leave notes for them or send texts with reminders
  • Let them choose what you watch or eat 
  • Get a picture of you framed

A couple enjoys a romantic dinner together.
Photo by René Ranisch from Unsplash

Receiving Gifts 

Receiving Gifts is another love language, however, this love language is often insulted as people think it is materialistic. That is a completely untrue misconception for people who have this love language. Oftentimes, the gifts that you get for your partner do not have to be expensive or even extravagant. All you need is a gift that shows that you were thinking about them, even when they weren’t around. Here’s a list of a few gift ideas!

Small Gift Ideas:

  • Find them a nice rock or flowers on your morning walk
  • Make them a drawing or painting
  • Buy them a plant 
  • Get the cookies they like
  • Matching necklaces
  • Just anything that makes you think of them and you know they will smile at is a perfect gift. These are so dependent on interests, so the sky’s the limit!

person wrapping gift
Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

Quality Time

Quality Time is another language that is sort of misunderstood. As my main love language, I feel I can speak a little more freely about this one, and here’s what I’ll say. For people with this love language, they do not care what you are doing as long as you are in the vicinity and are happy to be there. Love me with your attention or presence even by just sitting in bed and sharing Tik Tok videos can be a way to express love because (not to sound cliché) nothing is never nothing when it’s time shared with them. That being said, I’ve still provided some ideas on ways to spend quality time together.  

Ways to Spend Quality Time Together:

  • Gas up and go on a drive
  • Take a walk/go for a hike
  • Have a picnic
  • Have a study date
  • Go hammocking
  • Go on a coffee date
  • Start a new show on your watchlist together
  • Go stargazing
  • Go to the tulip festival (Washington and time-specific)
  • Go to the aquarium 
  • Learn something new together like roller skating
  • Let them teach you about their passion and vice versa 

A girl and a guy sitting on a couch and smiling with video game controllers in their hands.
Photo by Cottonbro on Pexels

Physical Touch

Our final love language is Physical Touch. For people with this love language, it’s all about sharing yourself with them and letting them know you are there through skin-to-skin contact. To be completely honest, this is the love language I am least responsive to, so it’s a little harder for me to come up with ideas, but here are some ways you can show appropriate physical touch.


  • Hold their hand
  • Hug them 
  • Put your head on their shoulder
  • Cuddle
  • Let them play with your fingers 
  • Suck their toes… idk man
  • Comforting touches such as small circles on their hand with your finger 
  • Play with their hair
  • Massage them
  • Light back touching while sitting down 
  • Hand on their thigh while driving (please drive safe)
  • Put your hand in their back pocket

Lana Condor Peter Kavinsky GIF by NETFLIX
Netflix / Giphy

Love languages are complicated and messy because sometimes things can get lost in translation. But when in doubt of what your partner needs from you, it’s okay to ask. Loving your partner in a way they understand can help your relationship grow exponentially. I hope this article helped give you more ideas and if you haven’t taken the Five Love Languages quiz yet, I’ll link it here because before you can teach your partner your love language, you need to learn it yourself! I hope you all find the moon to your tide!

Her Campus CWU Writer Current Junior at Central Washington University Majoring in Liberal Studies with a Business minor A yellow enthusiast through and through
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