The Five Love Languages: A Quick Summary

First published by Gary Chapman in 1992, “The Five Love Languages” has sold over 10 million copies in English and has been translated into 49 other languages.77 The five love languages are…

Acts of Service

Words of Praise

Quality Time

Giving Gifts

Physical Touch

Acts of Service are anything you can do to ease the burden on the other person: Volunteering to wash dishes, picking up the kids from soccer practice, cleaning out your spouse’s car, doing laundry, etc.

Actions, however, do not always speak louder than words. Words of Praise mean the world to them. These are any genuine, specific compliments that you can give a person to make them feel appreciated, valued, and important. It also helps nurture your fondness and admiration for that person.

Examples include: “I really admire how hard you work and how drive you are at your career – it’s truly inspiring. I don’t know how you do it!” Or “I really appreciate you being there for me to listen about my stressful day. It means a lot to me to have someone who’s always there for me.” Or “I admire how patient you are with the kids. You’re a great parent!”

In addition to acts of service and words of praise, Quality Time is also vital to any healthy, successful relationship. Time is love and to give love is to give your full attention. And in the words of country singer, Josh Turner, “Time is Love.”

According to relationship expert John Gottman, quality time needs to be at least 5 hours per week in order to maintain a successful relationship. Quality times can include dinner dates, weekend getaways, going to concerts, walking the dogs around the neighborhood, or even just greeting and parting each day with a hug and/or kiss.

Giving Gifts is also an important love language; however, this is not to be confused with being materialistic. It’s the thoughtfulness behind the gift that counts. Perhaps it’s a 50-cent postcard that you take the time to pick out while you’re on an out-of-town business trip. Stamp included, the total cost of this gift could be under a dollar, but that’s not what’s most important. It’s the time you took to handwrite a letter, the time you took to pick out a unique and meaningful card, the time you took to get it to the mailbox… Not to mention, the fact that it’s a surprise that arrives home before you do. It’s the thoughtfulness and effort that matters most.

And last but not least, Physical Touch is a Love Language that is more than just being sexually intimate. Physical touch is anything that conveys warmth, safety, “I’m there for you,” or “I love you.” Whether it’s hand holding, a back massage, or just sitting close and snuggling on the couch, physical touch is a vital love language to any happy, successful intimate relationship.

To find out your primary love language, feel free to take the free Love Langauge Quiz at

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