Love Languages: A Practical Guide
by Nayeli Velarde
As humans we all give and receive love in different ways. As we navigate through life and develop personal relationships with others, understanding how you prefer to receive love and how the people around you do is valuable. This is not meant to be an exhaustive list of how love languages can manifest, rather it should be taken as a starting point to discovering what is right for you and your relationships.
Words of affirmation
Loving someone through words of affirmation relies on vocalizing how you feel about them. This can take the form of encouraging words, compliments, a written note or telling someone you love them. The key to loving someone through words of affirmation is consistency and being genuine.
Acts of service
For someone who prefers acts of service, actions speak louder than words. Someone that is loved through acts of service enjoys knowing that they can rely on someone. This can look like doing chores for them, preparing a meal when they are sick, or running a bath after a long day. Being able to be a partner in which they can rely on is what drives this love language.
Although it may sound self-explanatory, quality time is not simply spending time with someone. Rather it is making whatever time you do have with them meaningful. This can be through having active conversations in which each party is engaged, setting aside a chunk of uninterrupted time to catch up or even planning a day trip somewhere. For people who love through quality time, making whatever time you spend with them memorable is very important.
This love language often receives a lot of judgement because most people believe that it is based on material things. Receiving gifts relies on the thoughtfulness behind a gift rather than the amount spent on something. Some examples include giving them flowers, going out of the way to buy them their favorite snack or remembering something they mentioned and giving it to them on a special day. Whatever the gift is the person will cherish it and appreciate it dearly.
Loving someone through physical touch relies on prioritizing intimacy. People who are loved through physical touch want to be held. This can look like giving them a big hug after a long day, a massage if they are feeling stressed or holding their hand while walking. Since physical touch relies on a nonverbal form of intimacy the key is to love them in this way often.
Expressing your appreciation for someone through their own love language lets a person feel seen. Deepen the connections you already have by learning to love someone in the way they want to be loved!