Love is essential to a fulfilling life. Research shows children that receive little love and affection become emotionally unstable later on.
Love has many definitions, but the definition that's most important is the one you define for yourself. Find what brings you emotional fulfillment so that you can keep your love tank full. When your love tank is empty, nothing (wealth, success, etc.) can replace the void.
Fancy houses and expensive cars are pointless if your partner doesn't love you.
The first phase of a relationship is the in-love phenomenon. This refers to the passionate, obsessive, and instinctual love that drives us to reproduce. Research shows that relationships that are based on this type of intense romance only last two years on average.
For a marriage to be lasting, we need to redefine our expectations of marriage, and focus on each other's emotional needs. Learning how to communicate our emotions effectively is key to nurturing real love.
The languages of love are complex and different people perceive and express love in different ways. Your primary love language might be physical touch, while your partner's might be quality time.
Misunderstandings can arise even between long-time partners because their love languages may be mistranslated. Understanding your partner's love language is crucial for building a strong and happy relationship.
The first love language is words of affirmation. It involves giving verbal compliments, praise, and encouragement to express love. “Praise is the sweetest of all sounds.”
Complimenting a partner is a more effective way to motivate them than criticizing them. It prevents your requests from sounding like demands.
The second love language is quality time, which involves giving your partner undivided attention, whether through quality conversations or quality activities.
Quality activities are less about the event itself and more about expressing love for each other. Simply spending time near each other while engaging in separate activities does not constitute quality time.
The third love language is showing affection through the act of gift-giving. Throughout history, giving gifts has been a part of every marital process and is a physical symbol of love.
Pay attention to what your partner likes. Surprising your partner with regular gifts is a great way to express love.
The monetary value of the gift is not the focus for those who speak this love language, but rather the process and meaning behind it.
One of the greatest gifts one can give their partner is the gift of self during hard times, by simply being there for them throughout difficult periods.
The fourth love language is acts of service, which consists of intentionally doing helpful things for your partner, such as cleaning, grocery shopping, or taking care of the kids. This might challenge traditional gender roles, but it shows love and respect for your partner, so it is important to overcome any stereotypical views (e.g., household chores are for women).
Acts of service must be voluntary, and not demanded. Frequently ask what you can do for your partner, and it will likely be reciprocated.
The fifth love language is physical touch. Physical touch is an important way to show love, and it can be the primary love language for some people. Research shows babies that were caressed and kissed have healthier emotional lives later on.
Gestures such as holding hands, hugging, kissing, and sexual intercourse are all ways to communicate love through physical touch.
Try experimenting and exploring unexplored places to understand what feels good to your partner and learn how to please them. Remember to ask for feedback. It is crucial to respect boundaries and avoid or report physical abuse.
To find your primary love language, first, ask yourself what you most often request of your partner, and what comes to mind when you want to feel fulfilled. Secondly, consider what your partner does that hurts you the most.
Your upbringing affects the development of your love language. Reflect on how your parents or guardians showed you love or didn't. For example, Ella's primary love language is gift-giving. She traces the source back to when she felt unloved on a Christmas morning because her family just found something random around the house to gift her.