Valentine’s Day is here. I’m sure you already got a gift for your beloved ones. This is a beautiful way to show them your love; although, there are many other ways to do it.
In fact, every person has their personal and particular way in which they like to show their love towards others. Also, everyone has a preferred way to receive love. How often have you thought that you are not loved the way you like to be loved? Loving authentically means letting the other person express their love freely. We can also express how we like to be loved. But it is only through communication that we will be able to create opportunities to come together and show meaningful love to one another.
Showing love is a whole language. It expresses itself when we take action. There are five ways through which love in action is shown among human beings. I invite you to take a few minutes to think about which is the way you like the most to give and receive love before you learn about them.
The five languages of love
A person whose primary language is Physical Touch likes hugs, pats on the back, holding hands, and thoughtful touches on the arm, shoulder, or face. For this kind of person presence and accessibility are crucial, while neglect or abuse can be unforgivable and destructive. Physical Touch fosters a sense of security and belonging in any relationship.
Words of Affirmation
Actions don’t always speak louder than words. If this is your love language, unsolicited compliments mean the world to you. Hearing the words, “I love you”, are important - hearing the reasons behind that love sends your spirits skyward. Insults can leave you shattered and are not forgotten. Kind, encouraging, and positive words are truly life-giving.
Acts of Service
Can vacuuming the floors really be an expression of love? Absolutely! Anything you do to ease the burden of responsibilities weighing on an “Acts of Service” person will speak volumes. The words he or she most want to hear are: “Let me do that for you.” Laziness, broken commitments and making less work for them tell the speakers of this language their feelings don’t matter. Finding ways to serve speaks volumes to the recipient of these acts.
For these people nothing says “I love you” like full and undivided attention. Being there for this kind of person is critical, but really being there - with the TV off, fork and knife down, and all chores and tasks on standby - makes your significant other feel truly special and loved. Distractions, postponed dates or the failure to listen can be especially hurtful. Quality time also means sharing quality conversation and quality activities.
Don’t mistake this love language for materialism; the receiver of gifts thrives on the love, thoughtfulness, and effort behind the gift. If you speak this language, the perfect gift or gesture shows that you are known, you are cared for, and you are prized above whatever was sacrificed to bring the gift to you. A missed birthday, anniversary, or a hasty, thoughtless gift would be disastrous - so would the absence of everyday gestures. Gifts are visual representations of love and are treasured greatly.
I guess you already know what is the way you like to give and receive love. Now, I invite you to observe the way your loved ones are showing their love to you. I’m almost sure that you will be surprised to realize that, somehow, they are already showing you more love than you had thought before. I also invite you to share this information with your loved ones. You can start a conversation with them, and get to know each other’s preferences better. This way you will be able to show love to each other in a more satisfactory way, and take the most effective actions when it comes to show how much you love the other person.
Finally and most importantly, I invite you to have the same conversation with yourself. Are you showing love to yourself? How do you like to show love to yourself? Don’t forget that others are just a reflection of ourselves. You may want to give it a thought, but this can be the subject for another post.
"The Five Love Languages Summary" - The Health Coach Institute