Have you ever felt misunderstood in your relationship or frustrated by your partner’s failure to meet your emotional needs? Or maybe, you’ve been on the receiving end of such accusations, not knowing how to reassure them of your love and commitment.
To make sense of and solve these disputes, you need to know your love language, as well as your partner’s.
Why It’s Important to Know Your Love Language
Let me start with a few thoughts on compatibility. This is undoubtedly a very important principle in relationships, but the way we understand it should be reinterpreted.
How many times did it happen to you to click with someone great, the very impersonation of Mr. or Mrs. Right, start a relationship, and live in full harmony ever after by the sheer power of compatibility? If your answer is anything above zero, you can have the floor and share your secret with our readers.
But if you’re like most of us, you’ve probably experienced a number of hurdles along the way. The comedown from the initial love rush can be rather brutal. That happens if you’re leaving it all to chance instead of actively increasing your compatibility with your partner.
The first step you can take is to know your love language. The theory of the 5 love languages has revolutionized the way we look at partnerships. It has given us valuable insights into our emotional lives and helped improve the quality of relationships.
In today’s article we will focus on the most common of the five love languages: words of affirmation.
Words of Affirmation as A Primary Love Language
To know your love language, start by asking yourself what is really – like really – important to you of all the things that your partner does. If you value the verbal expression of love above all, then you’ve got your answer: words of affirmation are your primary way of sharing and interpreting love.
Make no mistake, this isn’t all about making and receiving compliments. Whether you need to communicate with your significant other throughout the day when you’re apart, or you enjoy leaving cute notes around the house, or simply can’t imagine going to bed without saying “I love you”, these are all instances where your love language is being activated.
People who prioritise words of affirmation value not only the act of conversation, but the authentic expression of love through verbal – or written – communication. For their “love tank” to fill up, they need to connect with their partners emotionally and to receive spelled out confirmations of their love.
This brings us to the next point…
Learning to Use Words of Affirmation
It’s important to know your love language, but not nearly enough. For this knowledge to really benefit you in relationships, you need to learn to speak your partner’s love language, as well.
Partners of people whose primary love language is words of affirmation need to be empathetic and comfortable sharing their own feelings. Listening to your significant other’s words and paying attention to their behavior can reveal a lot about what makes them tick.
Not everyone is fluent in their partner’s love language. It takes time and eagerness to learn how to speak so that they understand, without having to compromise your own language.
Among the easiest and surest ways to fill your lover’s “love tank” is expressing appreciation. Acknowledge their achievements, recognize the things they do for you – be it cooking a meal, putting in extra effort to look pretty for a date, or picking the kids up from school – and be vocal about it by making positive comments.
Another thing to keep in mind if you know your love language isn’t words of affirmation and your partner’s is, is to avoid communicating in a negative tone. For someone who thrives on positive reinforcement and verbal appreciation, criticism can be hurtful.
One situation where you might unintentionally hurt your partner is when teasing them. Unaware of how sensitive they are, you might push some buttons which can leave them feelings extremely bruised.
Criticism, unless carefully worded and framed, is another way you might wound your partner without knowing it. This doesn’t mean there’s no room for expressing disagreement or frustration in a relationship with someone whose primary love language is words of affirmation.
Instead of coming across as demanding and/or extremely critical, reassure them of your love and affection and share your feelings without becoming too intense. They will appreciate your openness and will be happy to talk things through.
Now that you understand how important it is to know your love language and that of your partner, you can immerse yourselves in more effective communication practices. Our deep conversation starters for couples help you overcome barriers and achieve a sense of fulfillment in your relationship.