If you’ve never heard of love languages, they were introduced in a book called “The 5 Love Languages” by Gary Chapman. The premise is that we all prefer to give and receive love and affection in different capacities which can speak to the disconnect some relationships experience in this area.

Physical Touch: proximity is important. As a partner- increased and consistent physical affection can be appreciated (back rubs, sitting next to you, holding hands, sexual intimacy). As a friend or family member this might look like a reassuring touch or a hug. For self-love this include caring for yourself by taking a long shower, doing exercise, or cuddling with a pet- activities that make your body feel good.

Words of Affirmation: For those that have this love language it is important that they HEAR how you feel. This includes words of encouragement, compliments, and sharing emotions. For self-care this may include repeating positive affirmations to yourself such as “I am worthy” “I am enough just as I am”.

Acts of service: for those who have acts of service as a love language, thoughtful acts are important. This can be simple day to day tasks such as making coffee, warming up their vehicle, helping with extra chores. For self-care this might look like scheduling a visit to your therapist, paying your bills, getting those jobs off your to do list that will reduce stress.

Quality time: It is important specifically and intentionally carve out time for your partner. Be present and attentive during these moments. For self-love this could include being present with yourself, meditation, taking a long bath, giving yourself attention and nurturance.

Receiving Gifts: often those who appreciate gifts may be seen as materialistic. However, it is important to shift that mindset- for this love language visual representations of love and affection are important. It is not the gift itself, but the thoughtfulness behind the gift and what it represents. For self-love this would include treating yourself to something you have been saving for or investing into something to further your development.

We invite you through this month of love to explore the love languages of you and those around you! What you need and what others need from you.

Note: love languages are applicable in all relationships; intimate partnerships, coworkers, friendships and even includes self-love.

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Lifestyles - February 2022