Tuesday, August 14, 2012

My thoughts on Gary Chapman's The Five Love Languages: Singles Edition

I just finished reading The Five Love Languages: Singles Edition by Gary Chapman and can honestly say I have never been so moved by a book in my life.
I am so genuinely grateful that Erin, my GBig, shared this book with me. I have already applied some of the principles in my life and can see the benefits.
For a bit of background, the book is not a self-help guide. It is, in fact, a book written by a Christian relationship counselor from North Carolina. The book does have quite a few biblical references, which I genuinely enjoyed, in the readings. The purpose of the book is to teach you how to give and recieve love most effectively in your life!
The thing I “got” the most out of this book is that the five love languages do work for EVERYONE in your life—your boyfriend, siblings, parents, co-workers, neighbors, etc.

So what are the love languages?
The first language is Words of Affirmation, which includes worlds of praise, words of kindness and words of encouragement. In my observations, this is a very common love language and even if it is not our primary love language, it is one that most of us understand well. I’ve been using words of affirmation in showing love to my mom. Words of Affirmation are definitely her primary love language so little texts or encouragements and an extra “thanks, mom” here and there is already going a long way. It makes me feel good to see her happy to know she is loved.
The second love language is Gifts. Before reading this book, I would have said this is the language I speak least, however, I now know I was receiving the wrong types of gifts. When someone speaks the love language of gifts, the gifts are meaningful because of the love shown through them. In the past, I have only ever received gifts because 1) it was a customary situation like a birthday or 2) because my boyfriend screwed up. Neither of these situations made me feel loved in the way the book intends, especially the latter. When I sat and thought about it, I realized my parents have shown me great love through gifts, especially in the last few years. First and foremost would be college. Even with all of my scholarships, I can only imagine what a financial burden college Is on parents. I am so grateful for that gift and their love and support throughout really were shown financially.  
The third love language is acts of service. While this language is very straight forward, it is also difficult for some to speak. Unless you are my sister. Mel shows love through doing things to help others, to make their lives easier. Things like mopping the floor while our mom is at the grocery store, even if she doesn’t ask. Or even offering to do the dishes because she knows that the person whose turn it is has a busy night. In thinking about this, I have tried to show Mel more love through doing acts of service for her, something that isn’t quite as natural for me. I can already see the appreciation from her and she seems genuinely excited to have me help her move back to school this weekend!
The fourth love language is Quality Time, which is my primary language. This language includes both quality listening as well as quality activities.  I have always loved in depth conversations and really getting to know the core of someone and I think this is why. Talking for hours about things truly makes me happy. I also LOVE going on adventures and trying new things.  The biggest caution to this language, however, is that “listening” aspect—that is simply being physically engaged someone doesn’t fill their love thank, we need that quality interaction.
The last language is physical touch. I think women are more in tune to being “touchy feely” but this language can also be a hard language to speak, for some. Touch includes everything from a pat on the back, to a hug, to a kiss, and even sex—it is the closeness and comfort we feel when we are physically embraced by others. I think we all can remember a time when we’ve really just needed a hug  but often we are a bit greedy about giving those hugs. While I’ve never been a touchy person myself, I have already embraced the warmth shared when I simply hug someone, or pay them on the back, or place a hand on their arm. This is the language I am definitely learning more and more about but can already see the benefits.
The second half of the books discusses how we discover our own love languages, how we discover love languages in others and how we can apply these to all types of relationships in life. Gary gives plenty of examples that he has encountered in his years and wells as though provoking questions, which are great for putting this all in to perspective.
This book is amazing and I would highly recommend that everyone reads it.  Everyone can gain something from this work and that is what I love most about it. Be forewarned, though. It’s tough to put the book down once you have started it!

Today’s Pickins:
1.       Check out La Petite Fashionist’s LPF Mag! I am a contributor for one of the DIYs (and loving BBQ Bloody Marys!)!!
2.       Supposedly, if you submerge freshly painted nails in ice cold water, they dry much faster. Might be worth the try….
3.       Chai Pumpkin Spice cookies are a great way to ring in the fall season!
4.       This DIY: Anthropologie Stormy Sea necklace would be fun to make in quite a few colors!


  1. I read this book years ago! I remember it being very eye opening!

  2. I was just listening to a sermon about this the other day. It's definitely helpful to think about what makes my husband know he is loved!

  3. i love the five love languages book, he breaks it down so well, i definitely need to remember speaking my husband's love language more