Tying the Knot in a Meaningful and Memorable Way (Without Losing Our Savings or Sanity)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Tip #2: Ideas for Building Successful Relationships

As much as I love the idea behind self-help literature (i.e., you can and should work to improve yourself on a daily basis), I often can't stomach its cheesiness and the way it disgraces real literature.

Sometimes, however, I can have my cake and eat it, too--just by reading the back of the book, the Table of Contents, and the introduction.

That was the case with the book: The Five Languages of Love. The author argues there are five primary languages of love and it's important to learn which language you speak and which your partner speaks. If you speak different languages, it's particularly important to learn how to "speak" to the other person in ways that make them feel valued, loved, and appreciated.

Without further ado, here are the five languages:
  1. Words of Affirmation: You feel loved when people tell you or write to you about why they appreciate and love you.
  2. Quality Time: You feel loved when people make time to hang out with you.
  3. Physical Touch: You feel loved when people hug, cuddle, and are physically affectionate with you.
  4. Acts of Service: You feel loved when people do things to show their love for you (e.g., get you a glass of water, make the bed, etc.), things that are typically your responsibility.
  5. Receiving Gifts: You feel loved when someone cares enough to think about you and express their love through tangible gifts.
Of course all of these ways feel great, and we are certainly a combination of various languages, but most people find themselves strongly identifying with one of them.

One of my couple friends had issues because they both spoke in different love languages. One of them needed her partner to spend quality time with her in order to feel loved. Instead, the other partner showed love by doing acts of service. So one person was always up doing something to show love, while the other person just wanted to sit down and be together. Argh!

I just hope people don't spend too much time obsessing about wedding details that they neglect to do the important work of continuing to grow their relationships.

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Unknown said...

I loved that book! It really helped me understand how my fiance and I show love and how we need it to be shown to us. It's really interesting!

Paul said...

I enjoyed The Five Languages of Love as well. My particular language is Words of Affirmation. I try not to focus on just the one though. I think we're much more complex and sophisticated than to only need one of the five languages.

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