That’s what this week’s challenge was all about. Learning how to communicate your love in a way your spouse can best understand and receive.
And I know some of you may be saying, “But I don’t feel like it!”
I don’t like to be all touchy feely. (physical touch)
I don’t have the time to spend time together right now. (quality time)
I don’t know what to get him as a token of my love. (receiving gifts)
I don’t feel like showering him with compliments and words of affection. (words of affirmation)
I don’t want to go out of my way to do something nice. (acts of service)
If that’s you, I hope by the end of this post, you’ll be inspired to think about it differently. So the reason I believe it’s so critical that we stretch ourselves to demonstrate love in the way we know works best for our spouse is simple: the more love you give, the more love you receive. Here are 3 points that further explain what I mean.
1. People can’t give what they don’t have.
My husband sometimes asks me, “How full is your love tank today?” We learned this concept from reading the 5 Love Languages. It’s a simple question that immediately causes me to take stock of the degree to which I am “feeling the love” from him. And my response immediately lets him know whether he should make an extra effort to show his love or if we’re going pretty good. I find that when my love tank is low, which for me means I could use more words of love and affirmation, that I don’t act very loving toward him. I can become a little distant. And in very subtle ways, withdraw my love from him. I have to work really hard to not get stuck in this place and to be transparent about what’s going on.
The reason is that it’s really hard to give something that you don’t have. When you are not experiencing love from someone, it’s really difficult to express it to that same person.
But you know what’s even harder?
Trying to generate love when both of you are feeling as though your love tank is on empty. Ever been there?
It’s like trying to drive a car that’s run out of gas.
At some point you either have to walk yourself to the gas station, or you call AAA to come and help you. Well, consider me your AAA. And for this week, I’m going to give you a lift to the gas station. You’re going to find a way to put a little gas in your tank and get your car started again. Go back to thinking about how grateful you are for your husband. Remember that you, too can work on becoming a better partner.
If you are running on empty, someone has to take the first step to get going again.
And that person is you.
If you can take an initial step to reach out to your husband in a way that you know he will receive, you can make huge progress in getting things started again. By slowly filling his love take in his primary love language, you help him have something to give you in return.
2. You create room to receive more…and better.
If you find yourself withholding your love, or holding on to past hurts and disappointment, you leave no room for something better to come in. You don’t have any space to receive an even stronger love.
It’s kinda like trying to jam some new clothes into your closet. (I’m on a roll with the analogies!). You know what I mean. The clothes rack is already filled to the brim, and when you try to find something, it takes all your energy to move the clothes out of the way to create just enough space to pull that shirt out.
Now, imagine you’ve just won the chance to go on a mini shopping spree, but what you can buy is based on what you can fit in your closet. What do you do? You clean out that closet right?! You take stock of whether some of the old stuff in there is worth holding on to. You think about who you could give your clothes to. Clearing out that closet becomes priority number 1. And you are happy to do so. After all, you are going to get more, and better.
Well consider this week’s challenge your love shopping spree. That the love you will receive is proportional to the love you give. Only when it comes back to you, it will be fresh, new, and better.
You’ve got to let go of what no longer serves you.
You’ve got to stretch yourself to think creatively about how give more love (in his love language) to your husband.
Something better is trying to get in.
3. You get more love in more ways.
Rarely do both people in a marriage speak the exact same love language. And I believe that’s by design. If we both spoke and understood love in the same language, we would be so limited in our ability to show and accept love.
By expanding and appreciating the endless ways love can be given and received, you get to experience love constantly. Every time your husband treats you to something, says a kind word, wants to be intimate, helps you out, or spend times with you, you can now see those things as a consistent demonstration of love and affection. No longer do you have to wait for just one of those things to happen to feel loved. It’s happening all the time. We just have to expand our understanding of what love can look like to fully receive it.
Consider the 5 love languages, your love buffet. The possibilities are truly endless. Now, I don’t know about you, but when I go to a buffet, I’m a little more open to trying things I might not normally order off the menu. I’ve paid good money, and I want to taste a little of everything because it’s all there for me. And lots of times, when I try something new, I discover that I actually like it. And I leave the buffet happy and FULL.
Wouldn’t you like to be happy and full of LOVE?
OK, so I’ve given you a lot of analogies this post. You got a car that needs gas, a closet that needs more space and now a buffet that’s offering you a variety of goodies. So, in keeping in line with this week’s theme, Speak His Love Language – I’m encouraging you to fill his tank up, go on a love shopping spree, and try all the love your heart can hold.
Expand your love language. Be sure it includes one that matters most to your husband. Email me and let me know!
Until next time love,