Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Love Languages

My silly family

Love Languages. We all have them. It's the way we perceive love. Even children have tangible ways they feel love from those around them. It's not just saying "I love you" either. It's in the actions and words that we say. 

Gary Chapman wrote a book on this subject called The 5 Love Languages. It was originally penned for couples to help them in relationships. He has since gone on to write similar books about love languages in children, teens, singles, and even military personnel. 

The five love languages are:
  1. Words of Affirmation - those people who have this as a love language need words to affirm that love. Things such as, "Great job!" or even "I really appreciate you."
  2. Acts of Service - for people who have this love language, it's all about action to back up the love. Making your spouse a lunch to take to work, doing your child's laundry, or cleaning up the living room are just a few examples.
  3. Receiving Gifts - gifts - large or small - are how people with this love language respond. And it doesn't have to be a huge gift or even an expensive gift. Sometimes it can be as small as a pack of chewing gum or even a homemade card.
  4. Quality Time - the person who has this love language just wants to spend time with you and have your undivided attention. It doesn't matter if you take your child on errands or sit in the same room without talking while watching a movie with your spouse - spending time together is all that matters.
  5. Physical Touch - this is pretty self-explanatory. Holding hands, a touch on the arm in passing, a hug and, if you're married, well, yes, that too.
Why are love languages so important? Simply because everyone has a different one. I'm sure you love your spouse or your children or even your parents. If you have a significant relationship in your life, you have someone else you interact with on a level that would benefit from knowing their love language. 

There is a very quick test you can take on the Love Languages website that helps you to determine what your language may be. They have a test you can take for yourself (they will ask if you are in a relationship or single). There is also one for children of various ages and even teens. The test just simply gives you a number of statements grouped in twos. You pick the one that you most relate to. At the end, it will rank your love languages for you. The results can also be emailed to you at the end and they give a much more detailed explanation of what they mean as well as what to do with those results. 

This afternoon I retook the test for myself although I have done so in the past and nothing had changed. My love languages are Words of Affirmation (10) and Acts of Service (9). This means I feel most loved through words and action. I'm complicated that way I guess. Not only do I like to hear the words "I love you" or "Great job!" I also want to have help in doing the day-to-day tasks or getting my "to do" list completed. 

My youngest son

I also had my 10 year-old son take the test. It wasn't surprising to me that he scored highest in Quality Time. He has always been my little shadow. It is a rare occasion for him to opt to stay home with his brothers when I head out to run errands. He also loves to just sit and cuddle on the couch while we watch a movie or TV show. He really doesn't care what we are doing as long as we are doing it together. 

I do have two teenager boys as well at home.  I had the ability to send them both an invitation to take the test so I did that rather than do the test with them. I'm interested to see what they get for results. I know it will help me grow our relationships.

I highly recommend everyone taking a few minutes to find out what their love language is as well as anyone else that they interact with on a daily basis. It doesn't take long but can help improve the way you relate to each other. That's always worth the time.

Lisa is a wife to Bob. They just began their 21st year of marriage. She is also a mom to three boys (ironic, no?). Her oldest will soon be 18 but still has one more year at home. Her middle son is 13 and her youngest is 10. She also stays busy by homeschooling her children and watching a two-year old (a boy of course) full-time as well as other assorted children as the need arises for family and friends. She is very active in her local and state homeschooling community. She is also a very avid reader, enjoys writing, loves dancing at Zumba class, and checking Facebook a little too often. Lisa strives daily to become more Christ-like. She is reminded often of the Lord's mercy and grace and is thankful that He is so gracious to extend to her on a much needed basis. She lives in Maine on her own piece of "no-where land" with her family.

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