If you’re familiar with Gary Chapman’s, The Five Love Languages, you may have already determined which one you and your partner most relate to. For many couples, having a different love language isn’t so uncommon. Maybe Quality Time is what makes you feel most loved, or it could be Receiving Fifts. There’s Physical Touch, or Acts of Service (like loading the dishwasher). But the most common love language, and the only one that centers around verbalism, is Words of Affirmation (via Verywell Mind).
Very often, Words of Affirmation are equated with solely giving compliments. While your partner will definitely appreciate a compliment about their physical appearance, there is a lot more work involved in showing them how you feel (via Medium). Words have value, and your partner is someone who is not only going to pay very close attention to what you say, but expect the same in return. The conversations you have with your partner hold more weight because it’s through these conversations that you will really start to understand them. According to Medium, any small detail that you can pick up on shows active listening and communication, a vital part of Words of Affirmation.
The dos and don'ts of Words of Affirmation
So what are the dos and don’ts to cater to your partner’s needs? Women’s Health says it’s important to make sure your partner knows you think of them as highly as they think of you. There are several ways to do this. Firstly, pay attention to what statements your partner values the most. This is different for everyone so it’s important to listen closely because it can range from words of praise for their accomplishments, or words of understanding when they’re having a rough day. Find ways to express this authentically and not just saying what you think they want to hear.
As much as we wish there were a perfect way to express everything, there isn’t. Sometimes your partner might be having a tough day and your well-intentioned words aren’t helping. Don’t take this personally. It’s not your responsibility to fix every problem. Just be there for them and they will thank you for trying (via Women’s Health).
Date night ideas for Words of Affirmation
Having a conversation isn’t the only way to put Words of Affirmation into practice. Blinkist Magazine suggests that leaving love notes, or creating a custom playlist are both creative and affirming ways to show your partner you care. Something as simple as being vocal in bed about how good you feel is one great way to show your partner they are loved.
And if you want to take it to the next level, plan your date night around your partner’s love language! Crated with Love challenges couples to take ten Popsicle sticks and write the beginning of different affirmation statements on them such as, “I feel LOVED when you …” or “I APPRECIATE when you …” Place your Popsicle sticks in a cup and pull them out one by one as you complete the sentences. Another idea is to turn Fro-Yo night into a night of appreciation! Assign different words of affirmation to each flavor and topping and create a signature treat for your partner that shows how you feel. Have fun with it and don’t be afraid to get silly!
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