Your Guide to Understanding the Five Love Languages

Before you read this article to understand the five love languages and how to best express love to others, take this quiz to find your top love language! Make sure you send the quiz to others in order to get a grasp of their love languages too!

What are the love languages?

Back in 1995, author Gary Chapman wrote The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate to help people express love in five different ways. According to Chapman, we can express and receive love through words of affirmation, quality time, receiving gifts, acts of service or physical touch. He argues that while each language is important and enjoyed, each person has a different language that they identify with more than the others. By understanding the love languages, and which ones we and our partners use to communicate, we can begin to form stronger relationships. So, let’s go through each of them:

Words of Affirmation

As Chapman says, “Actions don’t always speak louder than words.” If this love language ranked the highest for you, that means receiving compliments, hearing encouraging words, and being told, “I love you,” means a lot to you. If your loved one tells you the reasons why they love you, it will leave you feeling like you’re on Cloud 9. However, insults also hurt you deeply, and you don’t easily forget someone’s negative words. To best show love to someone who operates under this love language, try to go out of your way to reassure them and let them know you support, love, and care about them. Listen to them, tell them you appreciate them, and give them some unexpected compliments.

Quality Time

With quality time, giving your partner your undivided attention goes a long way. People who value quality time value those people who are there for them physically and mentally. Avoid being on your phone or multitasking while you’re spending time with your partner. Someone who values quality time can get easily hurt if you seem distracted while you’re together or if you cancel plans they were looking forward to. Focus on creating moments of one-on-one time without interruptions.

Receiving Gifts

If you like to receive gifts from your significant other, you usually focus on the love, thoughtfulness, reason and effort behind the gift, and it is not to be mistaken for materialism. To you, a gift is a symbol of someone’s love and affection for you. If you speak this love language, nice gestures or getting a gift means a lot to you because these show you that you are seen, cared for and appreciated. A relationship lacking thoughtful gestures or a thoughtless gift will completely turn off someone who speaks this language.

Acts of Service

People who enjoy acts of service find that when others help them out of love and not obligation, they feel valued. Helping this person to ease a burden of responsibility is an important expression of love. To best demonstrate your love for someone who identifies with this love language, avoid laziness, broken promises or commitments. Following through on your words or tasks will show them that their feelings matter.

Physical Touch

If this is your love language, then you’re probably a very touchy person! You enjoy physical affection and attention from others like touches on the arm or the placement of someone’s hand on your knee for comfort. A simple hug can go a long way and show you that someone cares about you. Appropriate touches can communicate warmth, safety, concern, support, excitement or love. Physical presence is important to you, and neglect or abuse can be unforgivable.

Courtesy: Aspira Continuing Education

By understanding all five love languages, you can gain confidence to express your emotions, grow closer to the people you care about, and understand yourself and others better.