Wednesday, February 19, 2014
Speaking the Languages of Love
If you have been following the mouldbreakers facebook page you will see I have started a series looking at ways of affirming people. Some of you may recognise the material as the 'Love Languages', famously written about by Dr Gary Chapman. It's a simple concept but one which, when understood and practised, can pay HUGE dividends in all of your relationships.
The premise is that there are five basic ways to communicate love or affirmation to someone:
1. Words of Affirmation
2. Quality Time
3. Acts of Service
4. Physical Touch
5. Giving Gifts
Most people will have one or two 'languages' that mean most to them. The trouble comes when we are trying to communicate love or affirmation to someone in a language that they really don't 'speak'. E.g. I can spend time talking to my child, but if they really feel loved by receiving physical touch they won't have their 'love tank' filled up without receiving some cuddly time! Likewise you could hug someone all day long, but if 'acts of service' is what speaks loudest to them they are not going to feel loved or affirmed without some tangible act that serves and shows them you care. To the 'acts of service' speaker the statement 'actions speak louder than words' is very apt.
They key thing is to learn the language of those you care about and begin to speak it. I did this with my children. I simply said to each of them in turn 'you know mummy and daddy love you don't you?' to which they answered 'oh yes'. Then I asked 'how do you know we love you?'. One of them answered 'oh...because you cuddle me and give me kisses'. The other said 'I know because you play games with me and talk with me'. One was speaking the language of physical touch and the other quality time.
Most people enjoy aspects of all five languages, but there will usually be one or two that they need to receive regularly to truly 'feel the lurve'! I'll maybe blog some more on this topic, but for now have a think about what language speaks loudest to you. The clue is in what language you most often speak to others....as we tend to give what we would like to receive.