Love Languages, Words of Affirmation

But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness

 Hebrews 3:13, NIV

Words of affirmation can be as simple as telling someone that you lie about what they are doing. 

This is probably one of the easiest languages to learn to speak because you are literally speaking it every day. 

You just have to make the choice whether you are going to lift someone up or tear them down with your words.

But for a minute let’s go back to the basics of the 5 love languages and remember there are 5 love languages.

  1.         Physical Touch
  2.         Gifts
  3.         Acts of Service
  4.         Quality Time
  5.         Words of Affirmation

What are words of affirmation?

Words of affirmation are any spoken or written words that confirm support, uplift, and empathize with another person in a positive manner.

If someone is drawn to words of affirmation as their love language, it’s because they believe words really matter and help them give a literal voice to how they feel inside. 

People who gravitate toward words of affirmation, find fulfillment through positive reinforcement via compliments or praise that shines a light on something they did or who they are as a person.

To some, words may not seem that meaningful, but to people whose love language is words of affirmation, underneath each word is an ocean of meaning and significance that is working to either strengthen or weaken the relationship’s bonds.

Appreciation is at the heart of having words of affirmation as a love language.

It recognizes quality over quantity and substance over appearance.

It promotes empathy and compassion, increases intimacy, and helps to keep us calm and content.

Here are some keys to learning to speak the language of Words of affirmation

  1.       Express them often
  2.       If saying them out loud is too hard, write them down
  3.       Words are everything both good and bad
  4.       Be authentically you
  5.       Know what words the other person likes most
  6.       Think outside the box.

One of the best ways to think outside the box is by putting Post-it notes on the mirror, sending them a sweet text message, or writing them a silly little song. Not only will they be appreciative, but they will also remember it as being brave and heartfelt.

While the other person’s need for words is not necessarily your natural strength of comfort zone, they won’t expect perfection. Rather, they’ll be appreciative of your effort that much more.

If words of affirmation is your language and someone is not speaking it here are a few tips to get them to speak it more fluently.

1.       Don’t be afraid to bring it up. Effective communication is everything.

The longer you wait to bring it up, the more you are delaying your own happiness. Don’t wait until you’re in a torrent of resentment or a deluge of sadness before you ask for more words of affirmation.

2. Have a direct, open conversation about love languages.

Fishing for compliments or praise can be frustrating for your partner because it can come off as complaining instead of a request.

Flip it by turning it into a conversation where you bring curiosity and openness to the table and address your ask directly. When you see them make an effort, take the time to thank them so it doesn’t feel one-sided. 

3. Approach is everything.

The idea is to help others understand how to express their love and appreciation in a way that is most receptive to them.

Be clear about what you need. Be calm in your affect. Be confident in your being.

Show up as an example and clearly state what you need and why it will help you feel safer in the relationship.

This act of vulnerability and you standing up for your needs can help intensify the trust in the relationship.

4. Finally, return the favor.

Consider helping them help you by leveraging their own love language style.

If you’re asking them to put in the effort to help you feel more loved, create more possibilities by also being proactive to their own love language and how they can feel loved.

By putting forth the conscious effort, the relationship will feel more transcendental in its limitlessness.

Take Action

It’s that time again.  Time to dig deep and name 5 people close and 5 people not so close that really speak this language.

You might be wondering why I have been having you do this for all 5 of the love languages.  And if you’re anything like me you are saying, “Dan I don’t know 50 people! How do you expect me to name 10 people for each of these languages!”

Here’s what I have to say to you, you might not like it. But oh well….

Dig Deeper! Try harder!

I know you know more than 50 people, and guess what? Some people speak more than one language!

Now figure out how you can speak their language more fluently.

Last.

If this is your language I want you to think hard about how to get someone to speak your language without coming out and saying, “Hey dummy I need to hear how much you appreciate me more often!”

Trust me this approach most often backfires.

Prayer

Lord, today we come to say thank you once again.  We are so grateful that you are allowing us to share our gifts with others.  We are thankful that you help us to speak other languages, especially the love languages.  We are thankful that you allow us to give freely to others out of our wealth and out of our poverty.  We know that speaking these love languages can be tough, especially if we are not well versed in them.  We understand that if we don’t continue to practice using them daily that we might lose touch with them.  All too often happens to me.  God today we want to extend our hearts out to you and pray that you would fill them so full that we can’t help but give more to others.  Help us to see when someone needs a pick-me-up and help gives us the strength to give that to them.  Lord, thank you. Thank you for everything.  Today, God, we pray for health, wisdom, wealth, knowledge, and the ability to trust you fully.  We pray that you guide every word that comes out of our mouth, every letter or symbol that we write down, every step that we take.  Allow every single action we take to further YOUR cause.  God, thank you.

We ask all these things in your precious son’s name.

Amen

A Little More

As the leader of a company, I have learned many things, but one of the things that I use almost daily is understanding others’ love languages.

When I am introduced to a potential client, one of the first things I look for is tattletales of their love language so that I can speak it better and fill their tank on a professional level.

As I work with people on our team and as it grows I look at their love language so that I can better understand what fill it and keep them more satisfied with their role in our amazing organization.

These aren’t always easy.

In fact, I mess them up quite often.

There was this one time when I had just learned about the love languages when I totally botched up my first meeting with a new client.

Being a physical touch person, I did not read that they were NOT physical touch at all. And totally made them feel extremely uncomfortable.

After meeting them we had a great lunch, talked about their business, completely focused on them the entire time.

Then after we finished up with business I made the rookie mistake of speaking my language instead of theirs. (You should know that their language was gifts)

Shook their hand and then pulled them in for a “bro hug” without even thinking about it.

By the time I figured out what I had just done….

You can imagine.

Thank goodness it wasn’t that bad, but boy did it make things awkward for the next few times we met. Lol

They would stand at a distance and hold out their hand, making sure not to let on even the littles inkling that they wanted a hug.  Lol

After getting to know them better, we were at lunch again chatting. And when we got done, they reach out for a handshake and pulled me in for another “bro hug”

After that, I had the courage to ask what brought that on.

They told me that their wife had just finished the book called the 5 love languages, and after telling them all about it, they read it.

I told him that it’s one of my favorite books.

We chatted a little more and he brought up how quickly we connected because every time I dropped by I always had a small gift that brought him so much joy.

He felt that we just connected.

So, here’s the moral to the whole story.

When you make a mistake, don’t run from it. Embrace it and learn from it.

If I had run after that I would have probably lost one of my favorite clients!

Will you pray with us?

Mankind throughout the world throughout our current situation

All Law enforcement and emergency response personnel

For all military personal serving our country and their families

Those in Leadership positions throughout the world