What if you had the key to fully understand what will make another person happy? Presents can take many forms and are likely to have a greater impact if they are tailored to the love language of the recipient. As you plan your Christmas list, consider the love language of the recipient and make a choice based on what they value.
The Five Love Languages, is a concept introduced by couples counselor, Dr. Gary Chapman. According to Dr. Chapman, there are five specific patterns in the way people express and interpret love.
The five languages are pretty straightforward, but here’s a brief description of what each of them mean:
- Words of Affirmation: Expressing affection through spoken affection, praise, or appreciation.
- Acts of Service: Actions, rather than words, are used to show and receive love.
- Receiving Gifts: Gifting is symbolic of love and affection.
- Quality Time: Expressing affection with undivided, undistracted attention.
- Physical Touch: It can be sex or holding hands. With this love language, the speaker feels affection through physical touch.
What Matters Most to You and the People You Care About?
You can probably figure out what your language is by simply giving it a little thought, or you can complete a 30-question quiz on Dr. Chapman's website. Like many, you may have more than one love language. The idea is that we all express and experience love differently, and knowing what’s important to people around you can positively impact your relationships. In fact, it’s one of the simplest ways to improve your relationships.
As we approach the holiday season, take some time to consider the love language of the people you’ll be shopping for. What do you think your husband would prefer, another shirt or a shared adventure with you? Would you be happier receiving a hand knit scarf over a love letter?
Love languages are a bridge to enhance communication. Using them is saying to the recipient, I know you and love you and gladly will meet your needs.