Wouldn’t it be wonderful if your partner understood what you wanted without you telling him or her about it? Now imagine this situation: you had a fight with your girlfriend or wife and she is really upset and has stopped talking to you. No amount of reasoning or consoling could break the ice and you are clueless about what you need to do to make her feel better. This is the exact moment when ‘love language’ can help you or give you the much-needed direction. The term ‘love language’ was first coined by Gary Chapman, a relationship expert and the author of Five Love Languages. The idea behind this concept is simple: to let you know what your partner needs or wants without being communicated with clear words.
Every individual has unique ways to express love or the need to feel love varies. But 'love languages' is a way to understand these varying needs, which will not only help you improve your relationship with your partner but also work towards your own happiness. “My conclusion after thirty years of marriage counseling is that there are basically five emotional love languages—five ways that people speak and understand emotional love. In the field of linguistics a language may have numerous dialects or variations. Similarly, within the five basic emotional love languages, there are many dialects. The important thing is to speak the love language of your spouse,” wrote Gary Chapman. Let’s look at the five love languages proposed by the relationship expert. Words of affirmation According to most relationship experts, everyone has this basic need to feel appreciated and Chapman has proposed ‘words of affirmation’, which is one of the five love languages, based on this need. Words, as we know, have the power to break or make a relationship. Words of love or appreciation are powerful means to communicate your affection to your partner. And it’s best when such words are kept simple and straightforward. According to Chapman, compliments like—‘you look wonderful in that dress’ or ‘I love how you always keep your promise’—can work wonders to make your partner feel appreciated and loved. Quality time There is a difference between spending time and spending ‘quality’ time with a partner. When you say you love spending time with your partner it can simply mean watching your favourite movie together or attending a party. When you do such things, you have your attention on hundred other things including your partner. Whereas, spending quality time means giving undivided attention to your partner. This might sound cheesy but holding hands and listening to each other talk can bring two people closer than just simply sitting together and watching the television. Receiving or giving gifts Love is all about the act of giving and gifts are the physical symbol of this. When you get a gift for your partner, it’s not merely about choosing something. It’s also about the energy and thoughts invested behind this gesture. When someone gets a gift, the person realises that you were thinking of her or him while buying or making that gift, and it makes it even more special.
Acts of service
By acts of service Chapman means doing things that your partner would love you to do. This signifies how you want to please the person by serving him or her. This also breaks gender stereotyping, which can be a hurdle to a successful relationship. If your wife has been busy looking after the baby the whole day, you can simply pick up unattended household chores like clearing the table or washing the dishes. This shows how much you care for her and such acts speak louder than words.
Physical touch does not merely mean the act of lovemaking because touch is a powerful way to communicate love. Besides sex, physical touch can be holding hands, a pat on the back, a warm hug or a lingering kiss. Even sitting close to each other where you can feel the warmth of your partner’s body can be a comforting feeling. According to Chapman, such physical gestures between partners, like a goodbye kiss before leaving the house or sharing an impromptu hug, can speak volumes about the affection shared between them.