Note: Welcome to Marriage Minute, a new(ish) feature of the Chelsea Q. White Photography blog. Once a month, I’ll be sharing a marriage tip, article or story to help encourage you in building your marriage. You can see past posts here. Please let me know your ideas and feedback in the comments!
February is, if not just commercially, the month of love. I bet every store you step foot in is covered with red and pink mylar hearts and balloons, and every commercial on TV is telling you “exactly what she wants” for Valentine’s Day.
While I’m not into Valentine’s Day as a superficial means to celebrate my marriage, I do like to stop and think about love and commitment with a little more depth. How are things going in my marriage? Where am I falling short? In what areas could we have better communication?
One thing I’ve been thinking about lately is a tool that’s so simple that it’s easy to overlook.
Have you heard of “The 5 Love Languages” by Gary Chapman? It’s a book that’s been around a long time but one that I think is vital to strengthening and sustaining love and commitment in your marriage — well, any relationship for that matter.
The premise of the book is that we all have “primary” ways of giving and receiving love out of these five categories:
Do you know your primary love language(s)? (If not, you can take a quick quiz here!) We tend to have one or two, though we all receive love in those forms in some way. Mine are words of affirmation and acts of service. Maybe gift-giving as a close tie with service.
I’ve noticed during the past six years of our marriage that it’s not always natural to show love in someone else’s language — but that’s OK! I used to think perfect marriages were borne out of similarity but have come to realize it’s made me a better spouse to have to think about and intentionally express love how Travis receives it.
So this Valentine’s Day, I’d encourage you to think about the love languages and how you can show your spouse love in their own language.