Welcome to my blog. I’m a psychologist and the co-author (with Gary Chapman) of When Sorry Isn’t Enough. I share tips about What to Say When challenging conversations arise and I welcome your thoughts and questions. I’ll check back in frequently to chime in on the conversations here.
One year ago this week, I had the privilege of sitting in on the taping of an Oprah Lifeclass in Chicago. Her featured guest was my friend and co-author, Gary Chapman. Oprah Winfrey said that she had decided to feature the Five Love Languages because her stylist and others kept telling her how much the book has meant to them. Here is a clip from that taping:
Here are some ways to use the five love languages to enrich all types of relationships. These are based on Gary Chapman’s “Practically Speaking” articles:
Words Of Affirmation
- Buy a pack of sticky notes. Leave at least one encouraging note a day where your loved one will notice. Comment on something you appreciate about them, something they did, or in relation to who they are. The more specific the message the better. (Love Languages Relationship: Marriage, Family)
- Think about a goal, dream, or accomplishment that your loved one may be putting off because they feel inadequate. Use your affirming words to en-courage them (instill courage). Tell them you think they can do it; accomplish it; be it. These simple words could boost their confidence and help them reach their potential. (Love Languages Relationship: Marriage, Family)
Acts Of Service
- The next time you notice your loved one doing a particular chore or task, simply ask them what can you do to help. Even if they say no or not right now, the offer alone will mean the world. (Love Languages Relationship: Marriage, Family, Friend)
- Take notice of some things that may be small irritations to your spouse. Maybe it’s oiling a squeaky door, taking out the trash, cleaning a stain off the carpet or couch, tightening a loose screw, organizing a stack of papers, making the bed, or cleaning out a junk drawer. Whatever it is, take the initiative. Acts of Service are intentional. (Love Languages Relationship: Marriage)
- Think of the most meaningful songs shared between you and your loved one. Search for the music videos of these songs and then add them to a public playlist you create on your YouTube account. Send an email or card containing the link inviting them to watch. Let them know you were thinking about them. The thoughtfulness—not dollar amount—will make this gift super special. (Love Languages Relationship: Marriage, Couple)
- Is there something meaningful that you possess—jewelry, trinket, watch, book, etc… Consider passing it along to your child if they are at a responsible age. Don’t just give it to them—take some time to share why it is significant to you and why you want them to have it. (Love Languages Relationship: Parent to Child)
- Plan a “Picasso Pizza Party” with your family. Get some fun and unique toppings. Instruct everyone to use the crust as a canvas and ask them to design a portrait of someone in the house using the toppings. After the pizzas are cooked, take pictures of them and guess who each pizza represents. Later, display photos as art and a reminder of this special time spent together. (Love Languages Relationship: Family)
- Is there a local art museum in your city or town? If so, plan a visit with your loved one. Ask questions about how they feel and what they notice about the various works of art. Let their answers guide your conversation. (Love Languages Relationship: Marriage, Couple, Family, Parent to Child)
- Let your child know that you notice they are growing up. Ask them to measure their hands against yours—palms to palms—to see if they are catching up with you yet. (Love Languages Relationship: Parent to Child)
- Let your next hug linger just a little longer with your loved one. Add a light back rub or back scratch to help his/her love tank overflow. (Love Languages Relationship: Spouse, Couple, Parent to Child)
To find out what your love language is, take the love languages test on my free resources page.