by Jessica Wilkerson
Have you ever traveled to a foreign country for vacation where you didn’t speak the language? When you communicated with people there, did you feel slightly misunderstood?
Have you ever felt that way speaking to your family at home?
If you have you’re not alone. There’s an unspoken language that everyone speaks.
In his book, The Five Love Languages (which is a wonderful and easy read), Gary Chapman describes the five love languages as, Physical Touch, Acts of Service, Words of Affirmation, Quality Time, and Receiving Gifts.
Each of these languages give life to a person if you can figure out what category that person falls into. Chapman refers to this as a person’s “Love Tank.” Think of it like the gas tank on your car. If it is full, your car can go a long way. If it is empty your car will not go very far. The same goes for someone’s love tank.
If a person’s love tank is full, they will be happy, full of life, and willing to give love back. However, if their love tank is empty, they may feel resentful, be stressed, or angry with the person who is supposed to be the one filling their love tank.
Love tanks do not simply get filled on their own. They are filled by those around us. The people around us speak in different love languages. So not only do you receive love in a specific language, but you also give love in a specific language.
Once you understand how you speak love, and also how you receive it, you will be much more well equipped to live happily with those around you.
Let’s take a moment to briefly examine each love language.
Physical Touch – To this person, nothing speaks more deeply than appropriate touch.
Quality Time – This language is all about giving the other person your attention.
Receiving Gifts – For some people, what makes them feel most loved is to receive a gift.
Acts of Service – For these people, actions speak louder than words.
Words of Affirmation – This language uses words to affirm other people.
Do any of those sound like ways that you like to be loved? If you’re unsure, you can find out your primary love language by taking this quiz! Once you figure out what your love language is, you will know how to specifically ask to be loved.
Say for example your love language is Acts of Service, you might get a little rush of warmth when someone takes out the trash without being asked (keywords here.) Or, if your husband was to take your car and fill the gas tank on a whim, you might feel especially loved.
Now that you’re equipped with the knowledge of how to ask others to love you, you’ll want to find out how you can best love others.
There are several quizzes on the website to help you find the love languages of your significant other, your children, and even your teens.
I encourage you to take the quizzes together and talk about love languages as a family unit. This way everyone is equipped with the knowledge of how to speak love to each individual person.
You may be thinking, this is great and all, but we love just fine at my house. While this may be true, have you or any of your family members ever been cranky or upset and you just can’t pinpoint why? Or have you ever heard from your husband, “I work so hard for this family but I don’t feel appreciated when I get home.”
These could be signals that someone’s love tank is running on E.
I know personally when my husband comes home, I want him to seek me out and give me a hug and kiss first thing! Can you guess what my love language is?
If you guessed Physical Touch, you would be correct!! I feel especially loved when I get a hug and kiss goodbye, and a hug and kiss hello! Not to mention I love to be snuggled up next my hubby on the couch and snuggles with my little man more than anything else. But, I also have a secondary love language, Quality Time.
You may also find that you have more than one love language, and that’s where things can get a little tricky. My husband, bless him, speaks love by giving gifts. In the beginning of our relationship he would buy me things and I would simply say thank you… probably coming off as a little bit ungrateful of his thoughtfulness in his eyes. But it was because receiving gifts is dead last on my list of languages.
Once we figured out what each other’s love languages were, oh man did things change! Even though my husband speaks love through gift giving, he receives it through Acts of Service. So when he comes home after working hard all day to a clean, not cluttered house, and laundry put away… You guessed it! He feels especially loved.
I love being able to provide him with that little boost of juice in his love tank. I will admit for me, some days it’s entirely draining to keep up with the house, and thankfully my husband understands this. But when I am able to keep up with everything, it’s so nice to see a look of peace on his face, and his entire mood is relaxed for the rest of the night.
If you would like to learn more about the 5 Love Languages I would encourage you to first go to the website and take the quiz, and then hop on over to Amazon (The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts use this link to get it on sale!) and purchase the book to read! As I said in the beginning, it’s a fun and easy read, and I hope you are able to take any points away from it. I would love to hear what your love language is and if it was a surprise to you!