Ways to show your partner how you feel for each love language
Some people say that working out your ‘love language’ can really help you figure out how to show each other your feelings in a relationship.
The concept was created by Dr. Gary Chapman in 1992 who said that there are five categories – words of affirmation, quality time, physical touch, acts of service and gift giving.
The theory is that everyone has a primary language focusing on one of these things.
You can take a quiz online to help you realise the ways you and your partner like to give and receive love, but then you need to actually put things into practice.
Doing things that play to your partner’s primary love language could really help strengthen your relationship.
We’ve put together three practical ways for each love language.
Words of affirmation
This love language is all about what you say and how you say it.
People who like this love language want kind words and encouragement.
Obviously it’s important to tell them how you feel out loud but there are tiny things you can do too.
Write a love letter
Put down exactly what the person means to you, giving them some words of affirmation to help when you’re not around. Whether it’s a simple note as you head off to work or 18 pages (front and back), it’s something for them to cherish.
Just call to say ‘I love you’
As the song goes, give them a call just to let them know you care, or even an out-of-the-blue text reminding them how you feel. It can mean a lot to someone with this as their primary love language.
Fill a box with reasons why you love them
Fill a box with tiny slips of paper, all with words of encouragement and reasons why you love them. Tell them to pick one out any time they need to. Once it’s empty, you can fill it up again with all new reasons.
For people with quality time as their primary love language, it’s all about giving them your undivided attention.
Set aside a few hours where you can listen to them, make eye contact and not get distracted by work, chores or family.
Create a date night
After the initial few months of a relationship, dates can mall merge into just nights spent in front of the TV together.
Set aside a day every week, month or whatever you feel comfortable with, where you can plan something special.
Have meals together
Life can get pretty busy so agreeing to sit down and eat together without phones or TV can help incorporate some quality time.
It doesn’t have to be dinner time – have breakfast or lunch together instead if your evening schedules don’t align.
Book a surprise trip
Take your partner away from the stresses of daily life. If you can afford a two week holiday, go for it but even just a night away from home can mean a lot. Spend some time together just the two of you to reconnect.
Some don’t care so much about what you say or what you do together, but more about some skin-to-skin contact.
While sex is often part of that, it’s not the only thing. People with physical touch as their primary language like to just feel that connection.
It doesn’t have to be about huge public displays of affection. Simply grasping your partner’s hand in public is enough to make their heart sing.
Give a massage
Reconnect and make your partner feel pampered by offering a proper massage. Light candles, find some scented oils and help relieve the tension in their muscles, while embracing the power of physical touch.
Put on your favourite song and just take a moment to hold onto each other and enjoy the music.
Acts of service
Acts of service is less about doing things together and more about you doing things for them.
Take a little of the load of the plate and give them more time to relax. For these partners, actions really speak louder than words.
Make them a meal
If your partner loves acts of service, try to get home before them and surprise them with their favourite meal when they open the door, or get up early and make their breakfast.
Do something they’ve been putting off
Is their paper work pile overflowing? Have they been avoiding that mound of ironing for weeks? Taking on a simple task that they just haven’t got round to can mean more than any other gift to someone with this as their primary love language.
Give them a day off and do their chores
While it’s important to split household tasks equally, sometimes it’s nice to give them some unexpected time to relax.
Your partner might be the one who usually does the dishes but if acts of service is their love language, unexpectedly doing it for them after a tough day could really show them how much you care.
One of the more self explanatory love languages, gift giving is simply about presents.
While you might want to go all out, little thoughtful gifts can mean just as much to someone with this love language.
Buy them something special
When it comes to birthdays and Christmas, buy your partner something special. Work hard to keep track of hints they drop throughout the year. If your budget is low, choose something really meaningful. Getting a present right is important to people with this love language.
Pick up a treat on the way home from work
Gift giving doesn’t have to be huge presents all the time. Buy them their favourite chocolate bar when you’re doing the grocery shop or pick up a bunch of flowers just because. Surprise them with something you know they’ll like, no matter how small.
Going out for the day? Choose something from the gift shop
If you have a day out or a trip away without them, grab something tiny from the gift shop just to show them you were thinking about them even when you were apart.
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