Yesterday a friend went out of her way to drive over, drop off a meal, and spend an hour with me catching up on life. Boy does a good meal do wonders for a mother of 4. I often joke about food and coffee being my love language, but really there is some truth to it, because behind the gift of food is service. Have you read the book about The 5 love languages? I highly recommend it for understanding those in your family, your friends, and even your children. I would say it is a pretty cool way to start making big changes to the way you love others too. You can download it on audible as well. To briefly sum it up, there are 5 main love languages:
Acts of service
Words of affirmation
It’s often the case that the way you choose to show love is different than the way you wish to receive it. I find it all fascinating. Growing up with 7 sisters and 3 brothers you can imagine all the different personality types in one household. It taught me so much about being attentive to differences and learning to love in different ways.
For instance, my sister Maria is not a hugger. We tease her about her distant back pat she calls a hug. However, she will open her home to you and feed you all you need and never expect anything in return. Quality time and acts of service.
My sister Angela loves to affirm. She will build you up with her words and back them up with lots of hugs as well. Basically, if you are feeling pretty crummy you can just show up on her doorstep, and she will change your day around. Words of affirmation and physical touch.
My brother Joe will drive 9 hours just to spend the day with you and drive 9 hours back right after. Quality time.
My husband Gabe will rearrange his schedule to help someone in a bind, and show up even after you have told him not to worry about it if he suspects you need assistance. I’ve seen him literally use the shirt off his back to help a friend. Acts of service.
My sister Tricia is more reserved with her words, but she shows her love in other strong ways. She never misses a birthday. You can expect a thoughtful hand written note and gift in your mailbox every year without fail. Gift giving.
It can be challenging to give to others what doesn’t come naturally to your personality, but it certainly yields a more life giving relationship as a result. It is worth the effort for that reason. What about you? Is the way you show love different than the way you hope to receive it?