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Using the 5 Love Languages to Strengthen Your Marriage
Good Communication is the Key to a Healthy Marriage
If you’ve been married for more than 24 hours, you understand one of life’s universal truths: communication within marriage is notoriously tricky!
Husbands and wives in every culture and in every age have experienced the often-overwhelming challenge of trying to understand the one they love. Like it or not, you’ve got to learn how to communicate effectively in order to have a lasting and satisfying union.
Healthy marriages are the result of good communication. There are two types of communication that are essential to creating understanding and forging a connection between you and your spouse.
The first type of communication is prayer. Seeking G-d’s wisdom for your marriage is essential. Through prayer and Bible study, you can ask G-d to show you how to respect your husband, how to serve your husband, and how to grow with your husband.
Likewise, as your husband prays, G-d will teach him how to fulfill his role as spiritual leader in your relationship, how to provide for you, how to love you, and how to protect you (and your children.)
Cultivating a disciplined prayer life will also benefit you because you will learn to turn to Christ to satisfy the needs of your heart in ways that only He can do, rather than making the mistake of leaning on your husband to make you feel whole. Many husbands and wives endure unnecessary strife and negative emotions because they are expecting their spouse to be something to them that no human can ever be.
The second type of communication that is essential to a healthy marriage is interpersonal. This communication includes all of the words you speak to one another, how you listen to one another, the body language you use with one another, the emotional awareness you have of one another, and how you respond to one another.
Dr. Gary Chapman, a renowned counselor
Understanding the 5 Love Languages can equip you to improve the ability of you and your spouse to understand each other, thereby strengthening your marriage.
What Are the 5 Love Languages
The 5 Love Languages defined by Dr. Chapman are:
- Words of Affirmation – Expressing love by speaking words that edify the one you love.
- Quality Time – Expressing love by giving someone your undivided attention.
- Receiving Gifts – Expressing love by giving visual, tangible symbols.
- Acts of Service – Expressing love by doing things for the one you love that you know they want you to do.
- Physical Touch – Expressing love by using your body to make intimate contact with the body of your loved one, whether sexual or non-sexual.
This list may seem simplistic or perhaps incomplete. It’s worthwhile to take a look at the fascinating profiles of each of the 5 Love Languages. You’ll be surprised at how much these five dimensions reveal about the human heart.
“Many husbands and wives endure unnecessary strife and negative emotions because they are expecting their spouse to be something to them that no human can ever be.“
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Figuring Out The Love Languages Spoken By You and Your Spouse
According to Dr. Chapman, everyone has a primary and a secondary love language that acts as a lens through which they interpret expressions of love.
If you want to strengthen the communication between yourself and your spouse, figuring out your love language and theirs is the key.
You can figure out your love language now by using this assessment.
One of the easiest ways to determine your husband’s love language is to simply ask him to take the 5 Love Languages assessment developed by Dr. Chapman and his team of experts.
You can use the link I provided above, the written assessments contained within The 5 Love Languages family of books (my personal recommendation!), or you can download and use the
Another way to figure out your husband’s love language is to spend a week or two paying close attention to him.
When do you notice your spouse being most responsive to you? Is it when you pay him a heartfelt compliment? When you hold hands together? When you give him a trinket that made you think of him, just because? Or is it when you take the time to watch the game with him? Try expressing your love for him in different ways and make a note of your results.
The examples I just gave are very limited, of course. There are hundreds of ways to express love using The 5 Love Languages. I highly recommend taking a good look at the book for more details. The insights you’ll gain have the potential to change your relationship!
Note: Please, do not assume you already know your spouse’s love language! It’s so easy to think you are already communicating effectively with your spouse according to their unique combination of love languages. In reality, just because your spouse appreciates how you express love doesn’t mean you are expressing love in a way that they find deeply significant and touching.
How to Speak Your Spouse’s Love Language
As soon as you’ve discovered your spouse’s love language, it’s time to put it into action.
First, learn more about the love language profile by reading the research of Dr. Chapman.
Next, make a list of different ways you can express your love to your husband according to his love language. Try not to bring your own preferences into this process. Think about what these actions will mean to his heart, not what they would mean to yours.
Then, take 2-3 of the actions you identified in your list and make it your goal to do them for the next month. Mark specific dates and times for expressing your love to your husband in your calendar, then mark when you’ve followed through.
Keep a journal of your results so you can review it at the end of the month.
Finally, evaluate your progress, then make a plan to improve going forward.
If you want a super simple way to accomplish these steps, try out the
Communicating Well is the Key to a Great Marriage
Mastering marital communication is the key to a fruitful partnership between you and your spouse. Learning how to use the 5 Love Languages is a great way to develop those valuable communication skills.
What’s your love language and what’s your favorite way for your spouse to speak it to you? Share your thoughts in the comments section!