You're speaking my 'LOVE' Language
Before you begin musing, let me reassure you, this is definitely not a synopsis of a corny rom-com film starring Julia Roberts. Although there probably aren’t too many of us who are averse to a good rom-com, I want to talk about something far more exciting than whether Julia Roberts lives happily ever after!
In 2020 we all need something more relatable than the dramatized relationships we see in the movies. We need humanness, connection, real people! So, let’s unpack some real human psychology…let’s chat about ‘Love Languages!’ Now, straight away you might be wondering what a Love Language is? And don’t worry, you are not alone. This idea is relatively new but has really caught people’s attention…and for good reason!
The 5 main Love Languages to know
The idea was first written about by author, Gary Chapman. He theorized that if we get to know which Love Language the people we care about speak, as well as our own, we would be able to nurture deeper and more meaningful connections. Now you see why this topic has gotten so much attention! Love Languages, simply put, are how we as human beings, best receive and communicate feelings of love.
So what’s yours? What language do our loved ones speak? Hold your horses we’re getting there! The 5 main Love Languages are: words of affirmation, acts of service, giving and receiving gifts, quality time and physical affection.
The truth about Love Languages
You see, the truth about Love Languages is…we all probably identify with all 5 to some extent! However, there is usually always one or two that stand out as being especially meaningful to each of us. You might have already looked at this list and identified yours. Identifying your own is the easy part though. The trick you see is knowing what language others speak. The care and attention to detail it takes to identify someone else’s Love Language, is what makes for a truly brilliant gift-giver!
The most misunderstood Love Language
This leads me to a most interesting discussion! One of the most misunderstood and powerful Love Languages of all. Giving and receiving gifts! This Love Language is often misunderstood because at a glance it may be mistaken as being materialistic in it’s values. But this could not be further from the truth! You are probably wondering how the giving of a material thing, could possibly not be materialistic? Well let me explain my curious reader…
Remember when we were young and could not yet articulate the love we had for our parental figures? Isn’t it true that we would present them with small treasures like pebbles and flowers, foraged and found in the garden. Perhaps offer them a piece of partially chewed apple, as a gesture of love. Though these gestures might seem small or maybe even laughable, the love behind them was big and real. This is the sentiment at the very heart of gift giving and receiving.
Is monetary value important?
The answer is no. It is not the monetary value of the gift that matters, but rather, what it symbolizes. A thoughtful gift says that you were thinking of them. It says you thought of them when you saw that particular item, it reminded them of you. Being thought of, is possibly the most special part of receiving a gift. To someone who speaks this Love Language, an impersonal gift with no thought behind it, despite a large price tag, does not make them feel special or loved, in fact it may even communicate a lack of appreciation.
A gift can be even more special to a person who speaks this language when it has sentimental value. A subtle reference to a trip you took together. Something in their favourite colour. A gift that acknowledges that they’ve been through a tough time and deserve something special, just for them. These sentiments can all be communicated with the right gift.
A beautiful customer recently shared with me that she had purchased a few Koh Living (Tealight Candle Holders). They were purchased with some close friends in mind. These friends had really struggled during the recent lockdown. She explained to me that she wanted the candles to symbolize that there was now “a light at the end of the tunnel.” So every time they lit them, the glow would remind them to stay positive and have hope.
Her words made me smile and I was reminded, as I often am working in the retail industry, how powerful this gift giving Love Language could be. A simple thing like this, would make her friends feel so loved and appreciated. And isn’t making our loved ones feel this way the most important job we can do?
A thought to take with you...
We should all remember to put some genuine thought into the gifts we choose for each of our loved ones. What will really make them smile? Take some time to practice speaking the 'gift-giving' Love Language. A truly thoughtful gift will bring so much more joy to your loved ones than you realize.
Let’s spread some love
PS. We popped a few songs below we thought were very fitting for this topic! Happy listening!