Originally published by Gary Chapman in 1995, The 5 Love Languages began as a tool for helping romantic partners discover the unique ways in which they each communicate and receive messages of love. The theory behind the book, was that each person expresses and receives love through one or more of the following five methods: words of affirmation, acts of service, gift giving, quality time, and physical touch. The purpose of this exercise is to increase awareness of both self and partner in a way that allows each to more effectively and intentionally give and receive love. Since then, there have been several more editions published for utilizing the 5 love languages in a variety of other ways, including using love languages with children and in the workplace. In this blog post, I'll explore what it might look like to utilize the love languages to communicate self love.
5 Love Languages: Self Love Edition
First, take the love languages quiz here to learn about the style you use to express and receive love. Then refer to the suggestions below and experiment with different methods of self love.
1. Words of Affirmation
- Write down things you like about yourself ("I'm hardworking," "I like my eyes," "I'm a good cook," ) on post-it notes and stick them around your home to remind yourself of your strengths.
2. Acts of Service
- If actions speak louder than words for you, try doing things for yourself that will make you feel refreshed and energized. Clean up the house, make yourself a large healthy meal, paint your room. Find ways to care for yourself by caring for the space around you.
3. Gift Giving
- If you love getting presents, think about how good it would feel to receive some from the person who knows you best. (You. duh.) Getting gifts from yourself can be as costly or inexpensive as you would like. It might be a bouquet of flowers, or it might be a fancy pair of new shoes. Check out these stores for really cool self care related gift ideas:
4. Quality Time
- Spend time focusing on getting to know yourself better; journal, listen to music, or doodle, being present with yourself as you engage in solo self care.
- Get creative about exploring unique ways to enjoy alone time. Refer to articles from Rookie Mag, Life Hack, and Bustle for ideas.
5. Physical Touch
- Try Ayurvedic self massage. Refer to blog posts from the past to learn more about Ayurveda, and try this link from the Chopra Center for instructions on how to perform self massage.
- If you are a female bodied person looking to take your sexual pleasure into your own hands, consider subscribing to the website OMGYes, which provides straightforward tips and information on sex and masturbation.
Every aspect of our relationship with ourselves is sacred and important. Remember this, and invest in loving yourself this Valentine's Day.
Sneak Peek Below...
The above image is part of the "relationship" card from the upcoming Self Care Solitaire deck. The claddagh is a traditional Irish ring representing love (the heart), loyalty (the crown), and friendship (the hands). There is a belief that buying a claddagh ring for yourself is bad luck, as it is meant to be a gift from a loved one. But what if you are your own loved one? The ring can be seen as talismanic in that it brings luck and strength to the relationship between the giver and the receiver of the ring. What would it look like to give the gifts of love, loyalty, and friendship to yourself?
Take a listen to the playlist below, and make plans to take extra special care of yourself in celebration of this season of love.