By Theresa Harding
In my own personal experience of marriage, I did not always approach difficult situations with understanding and love. I was young with less understanding at times. If I’d known about these 5 love languages from day one of our relationship, I would’ve saved us from many challenges in our marriage! I never knew there was a better way to nurture relationships. I first learned about the love languages some years ago from a Christian radio show I was listening to. I was appalled to learn about the 5 Love Languages! It’s always nice to learn new and better ways to improve relationships, which can make them healthy for life.
A lot has been said about love and how to improve a relationship. Songs have been sung, emotional poems have been drafted. Yet this intriguing emotion remains as complex as it gets. When Gary Chapman wrote about “the 5 Love Languages”, I am not sure he comprehended the kind of help and understanding he brought into relationships. This is because misunderstanding brought about by the inability to understand your partner’s language of love can cripple a healthy relationship as soon as the “sparks” die out. So, how can you apply the love languages to improve and make your relationship solid?
You can’t implement what you don’t know. Therefore, if you want to learn how to improve a relationship, it is paramount that you first identify your love language and then secondly identify your partner’s love language. First on the list of love languages is “Words of affirmation”. Affirmations, verbal compliments, and encouragement are valued by the people who embody this love language. Statements such as “I love you”, “I adore you”, “You are handsome” accompanied by body language and facial expressions that denote the same, will have them smiling ear to ear, fully reassured of your love. Assuring your partner every so often can be magical, particularly during the turbulent times of the relationship.
“Quality time” is the other love language. Quality time involves spending one-on-one time with your partner. This time should be devoid of interruptions. Doing things together or simply engaging in deep conversation or silly jokes will have people who value quality time beaming with satisfaction. Actions that will make a healthy relationship.
The third love language is “Acts of service”. You are the type of person whose love language is acts of service if you feel a deeper kind of appreciation and connection when your partner runs errands for you or does a chore that leaves you with a lighter load of work.
Other people value touch. These people understand love in terms of “Physical touch”. Cuddling, kissing, hugging, a caring touch on the arm or shoulder and sexual intercourse touch their souls. Without these, these individuals will not feel loved adequately.
The fifth love language is “Gifts”. A thoughtful gift will warm the hearts of those who exemplify this love language. In addition to receiving, they also love to give gifts. The gifts can be expensive or not. What matters is the thought behind the gift. So a cute note will go a long way, and rest assured, will make a healthy relationship.
After you have identified your love language, you need to boost your understanding and love of your partner. It can be a little bit difficult if you value physical touch, to understand why someone would need acts of service to feel loved. This calls for understanding and to appreciate that every human is different. Therefore do not be afraid to ask what your partner values.
The next course of action is to use your partner’s love language to improve your relationship with better understanding and love. If they value quality time, be sure to create time, go out and do fun things together. This will create a bond not easily broken, as well as create a healthy relationship. Gift him/her often and watch him/her glow with appreciation and love.
To summarize, it is important to learn how to improve a relationship if you want lasting relationships with your friend and loved ones. Identify your love language and that of your partner, understand his/her love language and “do” their love language then sit back and watch your relationship soar higher in understanding and love every day.
My experience in applying these 5 love languages have helped me understand my husband and improve our understanding of each other better. This has helped us avoid complaining to each other (something we did in the past), about what we’re not getting or giving in the relationship. I invite you to give them a try if you want to make a healthy relationship lifelong!
Have you used the 5 love languages in your relationship, and has it improved?
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Healthy Living isn't difficult. It requires an ongoing lifestyle change with patience and an open mind. I teach this mindset all the time. After 11 years of transitioning from an unhealthy lifestyle to a pain-free one, I think it's important to share my knowledge and research with those who are ready to make that shift in their health and wellness.