The five love languages.
They’re not real languages in the sense of syntax, morphology, phonology, etc, but they are important in communication. I remember when I first discovered the concept, and it really helped me understand myself, and it has impacted how I interact with others.
It was first outlined by Dr Gary Chapman in his 1995 book The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate. It’s not just about romantic love, though; it has applications to many various interpersonal relationships.
According to this theory, one’s love languages are, essentially, the ways in which each person naturally expresses love, and the things that make them feel loved. The idea is that people have specific love languages, some of which are more important than others.
Words of Affirmation: Encouragement, compliments, acknowledgment of a job well done… People with this love language require you to tell them, not just show them.
Acts of Service: Doing the dishes, attending your basketball game or ballet recital, giving a massage… If this is your love language, what someone does for you is important to you, especially.
Receiving Gifts: Christmas presents, birthday gifts, just-because gifts… For some people, getting a gift makes you feel loved, especially if it’s something you really want.
Quality Time: A quiet chat over dinner, a game of Go Fish, a walk around the neighbourhood… Some people need time and undivided attention to feel loved.
Physical Touch: A hug, a kiss, a simple pat on the back… Those with this love language express love through touch, and feel loved when they are touched by people they care about.
According to this model, a person could have all five love languages, but they usually are in varying degrees. It’s an interesting concept.
Do you know about it? Do you know your love languages? Let me know!