You’ve Learned Your Love Language; Now What?

BY: - 3 Sep '13 | Marriage

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Dr. Gary Chapman’s bestselling book entitled, “The Five Love Languages” is a game changer when it comes to the way we understand love and marriage. It has become a must-read for engaged and married couples for many years. The basic premise of the book is that couples experience challenges when they don’t understand each other’s love language.

The five love languages Dr. Chapman identifies are Quality Time, Receiving Gifts, Acts of Service, Physical Touch, and Words of Affirmation. He includes a quiz at the end of the book to help you determine what your primary love language is.

The book is very eye opening, to say the least. I’d describe it as enlightening, even. What I have come to realize over the years, however, is that there’s a problem with learning your love language. While a useful tool in understanding a little bit more about what makes us who we are (as individuals) and the way we interpret love – the message of the book often gets lost between couples. Essentially, you have to remember that the book is not about you. It’s about learning how to love your spouse in the way they desire to be loved, not about what they’re doing wrong as it pertains to you.

I have heard so many wives and husbands say: “My love language is this and my spouse doesn’t understand that.”  Or, “My love language is that, and my spouse needs to learn how to give me what I need.”

You see the issue there? Learning your love language shouldn’t be used as a method to measure where your spouse is lacking. Instead, if you take the focus off of yourself and apply it to your spouse, having this new knowledge will become much more effective.

For example, change your thoughts to say, “My spouse’s love language is this, and I want to learn more about it.” Or, “My spouse’s love language is that, and I want to find new ways to love them better.”

If both of you are willing to do that, I’m willing to bet that you’ll see an improvement in your marriage. Consider your partner a foreigner from another country. You’re simply a tourist in their world, and as a tourist, it’s up to you learn all there is to know about what makes that country special (i.e. the language, the food, the music). Immerse yourself in the culture of your spouse’s world and learn to live each day in harmony!

Tell us, BMWK family: Are you guilty of using your love language as a weapon against your spouse or have you tried to use it as a way to understand them better?

About the author

Amber Wright wrote 39 articles on this blog.

Amber is a Communication Coach and Consultant that wants to help you learn how to say it right – from the boardroom to the bedroom! Visit her website, www.talktoamber.com, to find fun and insightful information on how to improve your communication skills and overall quality of life.

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A 4-Step Plan that Every Marriage Needs

BY: - 3 Sep '13 | Marriage

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You’re probably no stranger to pre-marital counseling. Even if you didn’t participate in it before you got married, you’ve heard about it and possibly considered it. So many couples spend a lot of time planning their wedding, but not enough couples spend time planning their marriage. Every marriage needs a plan.

Do you realize that if you take your vows seriously and your marriage is really until death do you part that you will be side by side with your partner for the majority of your life? That’s a long time to be with someone. Imagine all of the things that can and do happen in a lifetime. There will be births, there will be deaths, there will be successes and there will be failures. When you’re in the lovey-dovey infatuation stage, you just assume “we’ll make it through and deal with it when it happens”. But things are harder when that stage comes and goes.

It’s never too late to make a plan in your marriage. All it takes is a conversation. You can have a heart to heart with your spouse or future spouse about what your hopes and dreams are for your marriage, your biggest fears, and how you can work together to make it through the inevitable storms.

STEP 1

First things first, decide you’re in it for the long haul. Sure you say for better or for worse and all the other things in your vows, but really consider what you’re saying. Know that it’s a possibility that things will get harder than hard, and make a decision that divorce is not an option, no matter what. Commit to each other that you will stick it out, because trouble don’t last always.

STEP 2

Next, nurture your marriage regularly. Your marriage is like a car; it requires regular maintenance to perform the way it was intended. You wouldn’t go years without an oil change or weeks without gassing up. You need to treat your marriage as such too. The regular humdrum of your routine can get old fast. Sometimes, it’s best to get ahead of problems before they start. Consider a regular marriage checkup to see how you both are feeling about how things are going. Enrich your marriage with retreats that will give you memories to cherish together. You don’t have to be on the brink of divorce to get some counseling.

STEP 3

Then, find allies. Every couple can benefit from having marriage accountability partners, people who will support you both, who will root for your marriage, and who want it to thrive. It can be an older couple or your peers. They can be family or friends. You don’t have to go through it all by yourselves. Marital allies can give you that boost when things get rough and talking to your spouse just isn’t going to make it better right away. But know the difference between telling all your business and having trusted people to confide in, seek advice from, and bounce ideas off of.

STEP 4

Finally, remember you’re partners. Your husband or your wife is there to support you and vice versa. You’re on the same team. You’re going after the same thing. This plan is one you both come up with and both want. Your plan is your insurance. Don’t you feel safer living in your house or driving your car with insurance? You should feel more confident in your marriage when you and your spouse have a plan. Knowing you’re not going through it alone should give you the security to keep pushing.

When you fail to plan, you plan to fail. A marriage with a plan goes farther than any marriage just winging it.

It doesn’t have to be elaborate and 10 pages long. Everyone’s plan is going to be different. Just be sure you and your spouse agree on it and keep on pushing.

BMWK – does your marriage have a plan?

About the author

Briana Ford wrote 143 articles on this blog.

Briana is a writer, influencer, and Shero who's California bred and Texas fed. When she's not explaining the world of blogging and social media to entrepreneurs and small business owners, you can find her sharing memes, gifs, and her life lessons on her blog.

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