What Are the 5 Love Languages? Definition and Examples
How do you receive love? Gary Chapman's love languages can help you find out.
Posted September 28, 2020 | Reviewed by Lybi Ma
- The concept of "love languages" shows couples how to give each other love in ways that it is best received.
- An example of the "words of affirmation" love language might be when one partner compliments or thanks the other.
- Those who prefer the "quality time" love language might enjoy taking trips or having deep conversations with their partner.
According to author Gary Chapman, there are five love languages. Our "love language" describes how we receive love from others. They are:
Words of Affirmation - Saying supportive things to your partner
Acts of Service - Doing helpful things for your partner
Receiving Gifts - Giving your partner gifts that tell them you were thinking about them
Quality Time - Spending meaningful time with your partner
Physical Touch - Being close to and caressed by your partner
Each of us differs in the ways that we receive love. By learning to give love in the ways that our partner can best receive it, and by asking our partner to give us love in the ways that we can receive it, we can create stronger relationships.
Learn more about each of the love languages
Want to find out which love languages you speak (or speak to you)?
Love language 1: Words of affirmation
Ask yourself, how do you feel when you hear your partner offer encouraging, positive, and affirming words, and compliments?
Examples: Your partner congratulates you, tells you "great job!", tells you that you look attractive, or thanks you for something?
If these things make you feel the most loved and happy, words of affirmation may be your primary love language.
Love language 2: Acts of service
Ask yourself, how do you feel when your partner helps you with tasks that reduce your burden or ease your stress?
Examples: Your partner does a chore for you, runs an errand for you, or takes care of something without having to be asked?
If these things make you feel the most loved and happier, acts of service may be your primary love language.
Love language 3: Receiving gifts
Ask yourself, how do you feel when your partner gets you thoughtful or extravagant gifts?
Examples: You get a gift or a small treat from your partner that tells you he/she was thinking about you.
If these things make you feel the most loved and happy, receiving gifts may be your primary love language.
Love language 4: Quality time
Ask yourself, how do you feel when your partner gives you their undivided attention and you engage in meaningful conversation or activities?
Examples: You and your partner have a date night, go on a trip together, or have a deep conversation?
If these things make you feel the most loved and happy, quality time may be your primary love language.
Love language 5: Physical touch
Ask yourself, how do you feel when your partner shows you affection through touch?
Examples: You and your partner hold hands, kiss, hug, or sit/lay close together.
If these things make you feel the most loved and happy, physical touch may be your primary love language.
How to use love languages in your relationship
If we want to build healthy relationships, we have to work at it. We have to tell our partner what makes us feel loved and we need to show our partner love in the ways that they want to receive it. That's how we can use love languages to improve the quality of our relationships.
Created with content from The Berkeley Well-Being Institute.