I don’t remember how we came across the book about 15 years ago, but Gary Chapman’s book, “The Five Love Languages”, changed our marriage. In our opinion, it is the most important marriage book you can read. The concepts in the book are incredibly simple, but it’s surprising how many people don’t realize them until they read the book.
The five love languages are:
- Acts of Service
- Physical Touch
- Quality Time
- Words of Affirmation
Chapman explains that each of us has one love language that speaks to us most – one of these will make us feel loved more than any other. Interestingly, we tend to express our love using our personal love language instead of our spouse’s.
For example, my primary love language is Physical Touch. Taryn has two love languages; the first being Quality Time; the second (being outweighed just a bit by the first) is Acts of Service. So the way I naturally express my love toward Taryn is to constantly touching her. She can not walk by me with out me touching her is some way. One of the ways she naturally expresses her love to me is by doing things for me – cooking a meal, keeping the house clean, etc…
The funny thing is, neither of us (for the most part) feels loved when spoken to in those ways. She doesn’t feel loved when I touch her and I don’t feel loved when she’d prepared a meal. So the challenge is, we need to speak to our spouse in THEIR love language. Unfortunately, that takes effort.
It’s kind of like speaking a foreign language. I truly don’t understand why Taryn feels so loved when I empty the dishwasher. In my mind, it’s just something that needs to be done. But, I assure you she does. It’s the same way when she touches me. She doesn’t understand how much I feel loved when she touches me, but she makes the effort and does it anyway.
Chapman also talks about the idea of a love tank. We all have a love tank filled with fuel. The only fuel that can be put into the tank is our specific love language. As long as our spouse is adding fuel into our love tank, we feel good. But if our spouse doesn’t add fuel to our tank, we start to get low on fuel and start to feel unloved.
So I challenge you today to speak to your spouse in his or her love language. Make the effort to love them the way they feel loved.
If you don’t know each other’s love language. I encourage you to grab a copy of the book by clicking the picture below. The book explains things in more detail, gives hilarious examples of how spouses spend years speaking the wrong language to each other, and has a test at the end to determine your love language.
If you’re in a hurry, you can take an online test here to determine your love language.
Question: What’s your love language and what’s the #1 way your spouse speaks it to you? Leave a comment below.
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