Using the 5 Love Languages in Your Life

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Posted September 10, 2012 by Monica O'Connell in Life After Five

We’ve talked about the importance of increasing your positive interactions within your relationship  so I bet you’d like to know some ways to do that.  One of the ways I like to do this with couples is to help them gain a better understanding of how one another gives and receives attention which translates into love.  Often times in relationships we like doing kind things for one another.  It’s usually pretty easy to enjoy spending time with our partners.  What I commonly hear is that couples are trying to show one another that they care but sometimes the message is missed.

“The Five Love Languages” by Gary Chapman helps people understand how they express and receive the message of love.  Gary talks about how each person usually has a different primary love language and notes that people tend to be attracted to others whose language is different.

The love languages are:

  • Words of Affirmation: Compliments are important to you.  You like to hear the reasons why someone loves you when someone says “I love you.”
  • Quality Time: If you like quality time than you like quality, uninterrupted time.  You swoon for distraction free QT.
  • Receiving Gifts: You like not only receiving gifts but well thought-out, meaningful gifts letting you know you’re cared for.
  • Acts of Service: Taking out the garbage might really mean I love you! You’re happy as pie when someone
  • Physical Touch: This isn’t just about sexy time, you love being touched, cuddled, hugged and patted.

Which one are you? Which one is your partner? You might know what yours and your partner’s are based on my brief description.  If you want to dive deeper into this, you can totally take the quiz online and/or buy the book here It could be cute if you both took the quiz and compared notes.  That way you can both learn more about yourselves and one another.

This week, your challenge is to use your partner’s love language in showing them you love them.

  • Come up with a new way to give your partner affection.
  • My favorite homework assignment to give couples is this:  Each partner will do something this week for the other partner that you don’t normally do based on their love languages.  Don’t tell them what you’re doing or when you’re doing it.  Surprise them! Your partner can guess about what you’re doing differently but you’ve got to keep it a secret for a week.  After the time has passed, reveal what you did for each other.  It’s a fun way to increase your positive interactions.

What’s your love language?


About the Author

Monica O'Connell

Monica O’Connell is a Licensed Marriage and Family therapist in Minneapolis, Minnesota. In her practice, she spends her career cheering on “Career Girls” as they learn how to get the most out of life. Monica works with arguably some of the most successful, intelligent, inspiring women in the Twin Cities who tackle self-discovery, career success, and what’s getting in the way of their true desires. She shares her favorite moments as those “best described not by words but by the stomach aching, face soreness that comes from spending an entire day laughing with loved ones.”

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