Love Languages: How Do You Love You?
So there’s lots of talk about love languages and about how we give and receive love to others. For those that are not familiar with love languages, there is a book by Gary Chapman in which he identified and explained them all. He explains that there five primary love languages:
- Words of Affirmation
- Verbal compliments
- Words of appreciation
- Quality Time
- Giving/Receiving one’s undivided attention
- Receiving Gifts
- Big, small, and everything in between
- Acts of Service
- Doing things you know someone would like you to do
- Physical Touch
- Holding hands
Now, everyone has their “primary” love language although I don’t really think it matters all that much as to which one is the “primary.” Everyone has wants and needs within each language and it’s important to identify them all. Knowing what you want and then communicating that to others is the most effective and efficient way to get your needs met.
So, what about how we meet our own needs for love and affection? Because, after all, the first relationship with have is the one we have with ourselves. So wouldn’t this love language stuff apply there as well?
Think about someone that uses retail therapy to feel better. Isn’t that really just gifts?
Or someone that is able to get LOTS of things done and is super organized. Isn’t that a form of acts of service? Or maybe even time and attention?
And when we talk about determining and then using self-care activities, they almost always involve time and attention, but given to oneself.
How about when someone’s nervous? That’s often displayed with some sort of physical touch, like the wringing of the hands or rubbing one’s temples.
What would happen if you took time to not only determine and begin to understand your love languages so that you can have healthier and more fulfilling relationships with others but then also turned the work back onto yourself and figured out ways to show yourself how you love yourself in healthy, productive, realistic ways? I bet you’d feel better…WAY better.
So think about it. Think about how you like to give and receive love to and from others. Then think about how you like to give and receive love to and from yourself. They may be the same or there may be differences. Either way, the better you understand your own wants and needs, the easier it is for everyone, including yourself, to ensure that they are being met.
And you, yes YOU deserve to have your wants and needs met.