Understanding Your Partner's Love Language
The world of “love languages” has been around since, basically, humanity. Even before Gary Chapman.
If you aren’t privy, the 5 Love Languages encompass all of the ways that a person feels most appreciated. Whether it’s a quick kiss on the cheek, an endearing compliment, an afternoon walk together – these are, more or less, the guidelines of catering to your partner’s needs.
Most people have two main love languages (not sure yours? Or your loved one’s? Take the test!). TLDR: People express love in their own unique, various ways.
And, on the flip side, can feel less loved if they’re not receiving it in the way that they crave.
Want to make sure your loved one is feeling the most loved by you? Here’s how…
Words of Affirmation Love Language
“Words of affirmation” means that your partner wants to be reminded of your love, your appreciation, and your devotion.
It’s not necessarily an insecurity thing – it’s a comforting thing. Yes, they already know you love them. They already know you appreciate them. They already know you’re devoted to them. But – it’s the reminders that help them feel most cherished.
Write a note. Just a quick “I love you!” in a coat pocket; an “I think you’re great!” on their pillow; a “you are an incredible person” under their windshield wiper. You don’t have to write the next great American love novel to fulfill this love language. You don’t even have to write the next great American love index card. A quick, serotonin–inducing blurb will do.
Thank them. Even for things they would have done anyway.
Remember what you love about them every so often… And then say it. You don’t have to be slow dancing at your wedding to tell them all the things you feel. While you’re cooking dinner, tell her how you love that she makes you laugh. While you’re driving, tell him how much you love his smile. Brushing your teeth? Tell her she’s cute (but maybe spit first). Bottom line: feel it? Say it.
Create a playlist. Not a words kind of person? Let Bublé, Sinatra, or Seal do all the talking.
Physical Touch Love Language
No, you do not have to be that too-much-PDA couple that every group of friends slowly forgets to invite to events.
The “physical touch” love language is a simple yet strong one. A small touch feels like a tiny reminder of your love: think of any skin-to-skin action as a tiny burst of love serotonin (even if clothes get caught in the mix).
Hold. Hands. Frequently. On a walk? Grab their hand. On the couch? Yep. At the movies? Lace up. Disclaimer: it doesn’t have to be for long. But the gesture means a lot more than you think.
A hug can go a long way. Does there have to be a rhyme? No. Does there have to be a reason? No. If you both have a few seconds to spare, and this is the kind of touch your partner craves, get to embracing already.
Fingers + hair = love. You’ve got these beautifully dexterous digits attached to your hands, and your partner has this beautifully sensitive skin attached to their head. You do the math.
Quality Time Love Language
In a world where the go-go-go is standard, and time is a wildly valuable asset – this can surely be one of the most difficult love languages to fulfill.
But, like every other love language, it doesn’t have to mean grand gestures on a regular basis.
Have a TV show. Give yourself a nightly (or at least few-times-a-week) reason to reconnect on the couch to see what’s happening with your beloved characters. After all, as they say: couples that Netflix together, stay together.
Run errands together. Yeah. It can be simple things like going to the grocery store.
Plan date nights. While, yes, you can squeeze in quality time here and there, it’s still important to block off time for your attention-loving honey. And, by the way, “date nights” can just be “make dinner and watch TV.” Or whatever simple activity you like to do together – this does not have to be anything extravagant. Not every time, anyway.
Gifts Love Language
Alternative love language title: “It’s the Thought That Counts” Love Language.
Yes: this love language means that receiving gifts is how some feel most loved. No: these gifts do not have to be expensive splurges.
Those who occupy this love language merely want to know that they’ve been thought about – and a token of consideration is a great way to show it.
Diet Coke. Or whatever happens to be your partner’s drink-of-choice. Walking by a Walgreens? Pop in for a soda. Or a pack of gum. Or a Kit Kat. $1.50 later, your sweetheart is satiated by sugar (either real or artificial) and *sugar* (yours).
Wish you were here! Traveling? Send your darling a postcard. Even if it arrives after your return – your brownie points will still count.
Just … be thoughtful. Most “gifts” don’t even have to cost anything. See a unique seashell on your trip to the beach? Grab it. Wildflowers while on a walk together? Pick one! A rock on the sidewalk that for some reason looks exactly like your partner’s face? See above: “it’s the thought that counts.”
Acts of Service Love Language
Even the quietest action can have the loudest affect.
These love-language-receivers are huge show-don’t-tell kinds of people. Sure, they may love a compliment as much as the next guy, but the way they really feel adored is through a “random act of kindness.”
Chores. Vacuum while your sweetheart is at work. Clean the bathroom while they’re away. Do the dishes while they’re in the shower. Though these are small, and seemingly mundane acts – they can have a huge impact on your partner’s affections.
Make dinner. In lieu of the “it’s eight o’clock and we still don’t know what we’re doing for dinner” tradition, surprise your sweetheart every once in a while by cooking. Especially after a long day? Bon appetit, y’all.
Actions speak louder than – well, pretty much anything else. Find opportunities to make your honey’s life just a little bit easier. Even simple, day-to-day things (like putting away their shoes) will make a bigger impact than you may have imagined. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
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