Valentine's Day isn't the only day to show your friends and family love! This is your reminder to show love all year round with great gifts that speak to who they are and how they receive love. The book, The Five Love Languages, details different ways people give and receive love and will help you give gifts that your recipient will find really meaningful. Using these categories you can give great gifts that resonate with each person on your gift list!
Love Language: Words of Affirmation
"Words of affirmation is about expressing affection through spoken words, praise, or appreciation. When this is someone's primary love language, they enjoy kind words and encouragement, uplifting quotes, love notes, and cute text messages. You can make this person's day by complimenting them or pointing out what they do well."
If words of affirmation are their love language, then embroidery or engraving is a great addition to any gift. Whether it’s embossing a leather wallet with the words, “you’re worth more than all the money in the world to me” or engraving a piece of jewelry with a note that says “I couldn’t find any piece of jewelry half as pretty as you” adding a note of praise, love or appreciation will go a long way.
Another way of gifting words of affirmation is to take a more literal approach to giving them words. You can frame your wedding vows or a past love note. You can also print and the words to a song that really resonates with them or was from your wedding.
Love Language: Quality Time
Someone with this love language wants undivided attention. They feel loved if you are present and focused on them when you are together. This means putting down the cell phone, turning off the computer, making eye contact, and actively listening.
If Quality Time is their love language, then experience gifts will make it easy to give them the quality time they are looking for. Think about the activities that they love to do, whether it’s getting tickets to a sporting event or comedy show, taking them to these activities will help you two enjoy time together.
Also think about your recipient and whether they love to go out on the town, or stay in and chill. Quality time might be more meaningful at home to an introverted recipient. Scheduling an at home date night or game night with just the two of you and no phones could be the perfect quality time experience gift!
Love Language: Physical Touch
A person with physical touch as their primary love language feels love through physical affection. Aside from sex, they feel loved when their partner holds their hand, touches their arm, or gives them a massage at the end of the day, for example. This person's idea of a perfect date might include cuddling on the couch with a glass of wine and a good movie. They simply want to be close to their partner physically.
While gifts for a recipient with physical touch as a love language may seem limiting, there are actually a lot of options. Think of ways to merge touch and time together. For romantic partners, couples massages and lingerie make great gifts.
For platonic relationships, gift certificates and experience gifts for spa treatments such as manicures and pedicures allow for an element of touch but keep you free for conversation. Also, workout classes with partners or teams are great ways to integrate touch into an experience gift.
Love Language: Acts of Service
Acts of service are nice things you do for your partner that make them feel loved and appreciated, such as helping with the dishes, running errands, vacuuming or putting gas in the car. If your partner's main love language is acts of service, they'll notice and appreciate little things you do for them. They tend to perform acts of service and kindness for others, too.
Acts of service may seem like daily chores which can make them difficult to gift. Think of gift ideas for this love language in two ways, one doing the acts of service or two, supplying a way for the recipient not to have to do the act of service themselves.
Love Language: Receiving Gifts
For someone who uses and responds to this love language, gift-giving indicates love and affection. They treasure not only the gift itself but also the time and effort the gift-giver put into it. People who enjoy receiving gifts as part of their primary love language do not necessarily expect large or expensive presents; it's more the effort and thoughtfulness behind the gift that count.
If you’re giving to someone whose love language is receiving gifts, you might link you’ve hit the jackpot and any gift will do. Back it up a little, for this love language the idiom “it’s the thought that counts” is paramount. You’ll want to give a gift that is thoughtful and shows the time you put into this gift. One way to hit it out of the ball park is to start thinking about this recipient’s gift early.
Gifts for someone with this love language can be expensive or inexpensive but they should be from the heart. Whether it’s a memento from a favorite store they’ve been eyeing for a long time or a new trinket that will solve a problem for them, as long as the gift is thought out, they will be overjoyed.
One thing to remember is that the love languages are a guide to help you express your feelings, but people can give and receive love in multiple ways. While someone might have a main love language quality time, that doesn’t mean that they wouldn’t appreciate words of affirmation if they get a job promotion or achieve a long term goal. Each person is an individual and giving gifts and expressing your affection is always a good thing, no matter which love language speaks to you or your recipient!
Very Happy Gifting!