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Love Languages

This is my primary love language! Before I read the book I had listened to my friends discussing it and identified my language right off the bat. My lady, Theresa, gave me a copy of the book as a present and once I started reading it I was taken with it and was driven to continue. It all made sense, but it was when I got to "my" chapter that the light shone through. The memories of my life started racing through my head and the missing puzzle pieces that explained the dysfunction in so many of my relationships fell into place. I finally understood.

The fourth language in Chapman's five is what he calls Acts of Service. Many people show their love by doing things for their loved ones. Cooking, cleaning, paying bills, walking the dog, mowing the lawn, etc. The range of possible actions is incredible so it is important to find out which specific actions make your partner feel loved. Perhaps I take the time to fill the gas tank on her car so that when she goes somewhere in the morning she never has to worry about running out of gas.

While some people are moved by a loving word, others prefer tangible tokens of love. They don't need to be expensive or extravagant. The gift itself isn't the love. The gift is a visual representation of the time you spent thinking about getting the gift, choosing which gift to get, and acquiring the gift. In addition, it can show that you were paying attention to them at some point in the past when they expressed a desire for that item in particular.

What happens if you are providing your loved one tons of compliments, encouraging words and other affirmations but they still don't feel loved? Then perhaps his or her love language is not Words of Affirmation! Everyone has their own preferred love language so you should be ready to alter your behaviors to match your loved one's favored language. "He tells me that he loves me, but if he really loved me then he would spend time with me." If your partner says something like this, then their language is most likely Quality Time. Spending time where you give your undivided attention to your spouse can be very powerful.

Mark Twain once said, "I can live two months on a good compliment." pg 39

A few years ago, my circle of friends turned me onto a book called The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman. It's an interesting and practical view on how we express love to one another. He's got a simple and conversational style and, despite mixing of metaphors, it is a fantastic read. He offers a very simple perspective on why love tends to fade over time and offers practical ways that you can maintain or rekindle love between people (focused on couples and spouses). I was given the basic gist of the book from my friends and it all made sense.

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