It’s Valentine’s Day and Cupid is shooting his arrows at singles everywhere. But the reality is, that not every arrow is a bullseye into your heart… and that may have something to do with how you give and receive love. Did you know that everybody feels love and expresses love in different ways?
Gary Chapman wrote a book called, “The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate.” This book has become one of the most recognized and useful tools when it comes to dating and relationships; and at It’s Just Lunch, it’s something we help our clients shed some light on.
Why is it so important to understand a love language when dating?
Dating cues aren’t always obvious. Think about it, have you ever been unsure of someone’s feelings for you, or vice versa, someone was unsure of your feelings? That may be because you both feel and show love in different ways, and that’s okay! Discovering your date’s love language can be easy! It’s something you can uncover through conversation or it’s as simple as asking “What makes you feel the most connected to someone?”
Understanding someone’s love language and being able to speak to it effectively, is an eye opener for your love life!
So, what are the love languages?
Words of Affirmation
Are you someone who needs to hear “I love you” often?
Do you need to hear how lovely you look?
Does it help to express your relationship goals and to hear how important your relationship is to your partner?
Then your love language is words of affirmation. It is important for you to have love expressed verbally. When those feelings are not expressed, it’s easy for you to think that your partner may not be feeling the same as you.
While you may assume that this love language equates to the quantity of time you spend with your partner, that’s not always the case. What’s more important is how the time together is spent.
Do you need full attention and get irritated if your partner is a busy professional with a full schedule?
Do you relish in deep conversation and adore an all-ears listener?
Quality time refers to understanding love by having the full attention of your partner when the two of you are together.
Are you someone who loves to have their hand held?
Do you like to snuggle up to your partner during a movie?
Or even something as small as a hand on your back, arm, or shoulder as they walk by you?
Then your love language is physical touch. Physical affection doesn’t have to be sexual. It’s the little acts of your partner wanting to feel closer to you, by physically closing the gap between the two of you.
Acts of Service
Are you someone who feels loved when a partner does something special for you?
Maybe your partner shoveled your driveway, or helped you clean the house, or made you dinner.
If these acts of service are seen as affection, or care, then this is your love language. It doesn’t have to be grand gestures all of the time, it can even be something as simple as remembering their favorite beverage and picking it up before a date.
Tokens of Affection
Everyone loves a gift, right? But people who have this love language not only love giving gifts to the person they are with, but they also desire receiving gifts to know their partner is thinking of them.
Using Your Love Language to Your Dating Advantage
It’s always best to speak in a way that the person listening will hear you. In dating, it’s not just the words themselves, but the intention behind them. So, consider their love language and how you can subtly apply it on your dates.
- If you see your date reacting more favorably to compliments… make sure you’re expressing your interest in them verbally.
- If your date wants to spend more time with you, make sure you’re giving them your full attention for that quality time.
- Even if you aren’t used to public displays of affection, try holding your partner’s hand as you walk around.
- If acts of service are their love language, offer to help your date with a project or to accompany them on something they brought up to you.
- And of course, for someone who loves receiving gifts, you can start small with flowers or bring them a coffee before a morning walk together.
So, as you go into your next few dates, start speaking the love languages! We can’t wait to hear what you found successful when communicating with your future connections.
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