Podcast – Episode 0051 – 5 Love Languages

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In this episode, Joel and Antonia talk about Gary Chapman and his book The 5 Love Languages.

In this podcast on the 5 love languages you’ll find:

  • Gary Chapman outlines love in 5 different ways. These love languages are very powerful and we all have different ways of expressing our love to our mate.
  • We’re often unaware that we speak in different love languages. When this happens, misunderstanding occurs because you’re going to think that the person is denying or withholding love from you.
  • The 5 Different Love Languages
    1. Words of Affirmation. Expressing love through affirming words like how proud you are of your partner or maybe a nickname that only the two of you use dearly. It could also be the way you speak highly of them in public.
    2. Quality Time. Spending a lot of quality time. There are people who just want being present by the quality of time they spend with their mate.
    3. Gift Giving. Expresses love by finding that perfect object that will make the person happy or to receive a gift.
    4. Acts of Service. Doing the dishes, getting the oil changed in the car. Working hard to provide for the family.
    5. Physical Touch. Through touching and physicality. Examples include but not limited to snogging, holding hands in public, kissing in public and giving a massage. This is more than just sex. Sex is a fundamental need and is part of Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs.
  • When couples have different ways of expressing their love (example – you’re a quality time person and your mate is an “acts of service” person), misunderstanding occurs and sometimes, causing one or both partners to feel “not loved”.
  • It’s a matter of finding out what’s your love language and how are you misinterpreting selfishness.
  • So how are you going to find out your partner’s primary love language? Test it, try giving them gifts for example and check if it creates a big impact to them.
  • Oftentimes, the language you use to give love is not necessarily the language you get from the other person.
  • The way that we receive love and the way that we show love might be different. Knowing not just what you and your mate are but what your receiving and giving language is, can be very powerful.
  • If somebody is expressing love in a way that’s unfamiliar to us, keep in mind that it’s an attempt for them to show love intimacy.
  • The more we can see positive intent from our mate, the more we understand that they want to feel intimacy, being able to understand the love language model helps maintain the intimacy and maintain a healthy relationship.

Exercises we recommend in this podcast:

Write down the 5 love languages and rate yourself and your mate from 1-5 (1 being the highest). Invite your mate to have their own list and talk deeply about it.

Things we reference in this podcast:

In this episode, Joel and Antonia talk about Gary Chapman and his book The 5 Love Languages. #lovelanguage


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Showing 10 comments
  • Nicole

    It appears that either the definition of quality time in the 5 love languages model has changed or it has been misinterpreted in the podcast. On the 5 love languages website quality time is described as follows:

    In the vernacular of Quality Time, nothing says, “I love you,” like full, undivided attention. Being there for this type of person is critical, but really being there – with the TV off, fork and knife down, and all chores and tasks on standby – makes your significant other feel truly special and loved. Distractions, postponed dates, or the failure to listen can be especially hurtful. Quality time also means sharing quality conversation and quality activities.


    If quality time was defined as it is in the podcast (spending time together regardless of attention, conversation and/or activity) this would by no means be my primary love language. I hope this new definition will help others when determining their love language.


    • Audra

      This is exactly the reason I wanted to comment.
      Quality time for me includes SHARED ACTIVITIES, being present and engaged with each other, showing interest and attention, laughter and playfulness, etc.
      Just being near each other, in a passive way, is quality time on a starvation level.

  • Sara

    When I first came across the topic of the love languages and read through the descriptions, my mind was blown. Like the guy you mentioned in the podcast, I have always been confused with my mom’s constant spending on stuff like clothes when I’m the kind of person who just wear a stack again and again and again and the amount of clothes piling up in my cupboard felt like a waste of money. And to test it out, I did stuff like randomly buying her ice cream or fruits that she like and her excitement whenever she gets these things that I simply bought across the street from our house (and she knows it) was incomprehensible to me.

    I like how you mentioned that our languages for giving and receiving may be different. I took the test on their website and it says that my primary language is words of affirmation and while that completely resonates with me, I also realised that I don’t really use words of affirmation as much and yet I get ecstatic when someone simply say ‘thank you’ to me.

    I think it’s because I grew up in an environment that emphasises on acts of service, gift giving and quality time as the ‘ideal’ love language. My mother thinks that talk is cheap and when I was around nine, she thought that I was old enough to not need validation for my actions and while it sounds a little extreme, to hear my mother still telling my younger siblings (the youngest being a baby still) ‘well done’ when they button up their clothes and yet she stopped me calling me by silly baby names made me feel ostracized (and it so happens that I was also going through some tough times then). I remember once when I placed really high in my test, she told me that I did a great job once and that was it while my sister who usually worked harder than me but didn’t do as well was reminded so many times that my parents were proud of her. Years later I found out that they were simply trying to make her feel better and not start a sibling rivalry between us and she thought that at ten, and since I do well every year, I don’t need the encouragement as my younger sister did.

    It’s only when I found out about MBTI and added it to my tools in personal development and appreciated my quirks as an ENFP that I begin to say more of what I feel and my sister told me that I tend to ‘over-thank’ and my mother thinks that I’m trying to get her to do something when I tell her that I love her out of the blue. It’s not that she question the fact that I love her but for her, it’s an accepted fact and there is no point in bringing it up and thus the fact that I did makes her suspicious.

  • Bert

    You (Antonia) mention you like to give gifts, but receiving them is not that important for you. I guess this is because you are “acts of service”-person. The whole shopping, packing and planning of the celebration is an act of service for you.

    • Antonia Dodge

      I think you’re on to something – good insight. 🙂


  • Shelby Nicholson

    What a revelation! I had no idea that others show love in different ways from me…affirmation and physical touch. This news comes with perfect timing for me. Thank you so much for sharing!! I read a meme this morning that seems appropriate: “Love is alright for those who can handle the psychic overload. It’s like trying to carry a full garbage can on your back over a rushing river of piss.”

  • m. ireland

    Though I can see a value to becoming aware that there are different “Love Languages” , yet astounded at the same time that people even enter into any long term relationship without already KNOWING how to please their partner and your partner KNOW how to please you. This is done successfully only through open and honest communications. The kind where a full trust in someone makes you feel that there is NOTHING you can’t talk about and you won’t be judged.
    If the relationship doesn’t have that level of open communication BEFORE making a major commitment you are throwing the first stone into what should be calm waters.
    The “gift giver” was truly frightening when portrayed as “that’s how I am”. If you derive your primary display of Love from giving a gift, it is the REACTION of the recipient that the giver seeks. Not the gift itself, but in the JOY the giver is hoping it will inspire.
    For that giver to act “politely pleased” when receiving a gift speaks to a total lack of compassion,understanding and empathy. If the GIVER derives pleasure from the joy they hope their gift brings, what does it say about THEM when it doesn’t even dawn on them when RECEIVING a gift THAT PERSON GIVING IT isn’t looking for the same thing.
    I had to stop listening at that point.
    But as an INFJ I have no problem gaining the insight to my partners wants, needs,moods and what makes them feel happy.
    Their happiness always comes first. After all, if you truly love someone completely and unconditionally there is no other way.

    • Antonia Dodge

      Every type has its gifts and talents. And it’s good to remember that not everyone is the same type, and not everyone has the same talents as you do. You may not need a model like the 5 Love Languages, but there are personality types that lean heavily on tools that help them understand how people experience things like love. What is simple for you may be game changing for another. And, of course, the opposite will be true with the things they are naturally talented in but are blind spots for you.

      I recommend caution for overvaluing your own experience on this one. This model may not be helpful for you, and in that case there’s no reason for you to adopt it. Our philosophy is to keep the tools that work for you and throw out the ones that don’t. But please don’t marginalize the experience of other people who are helped by tools that don’t work for you.


  • Patricia

    I have heard about this before, and I know a bit about it, but I was wondering how you might be able to tell what another person’s love language is. I am an INTP and I don’t even truly know what my love language is because as long as the person shows in one way or another that they genuinely care about me, then I don’t care all that much how they do it. I do not like to be touched too much, and words of affirmation can get old if I feel that they are not genuine, but other than that, I don’t really care.
    But anyway, recently there is a boy who I believe to be an ENFP (although I’m not sure about that, and he tends to show signs of an introvert sometimes) who likes me (I know because his mother told me), and I also like him, but I don’t know how to communicate to him that I like him.
    I am certain that he believes that I don’t like him, but all the things that I have done to try to show him otherwise have failed. So I was wondering how I could determine what his love language is, and how I could then communicate to him that I like him.
    And I was also curious whether certain personality types have specific love languages, for instance, perhaps INTPs’ love language tend to be acts of service or something of that sort.

  • Laura

    I have thought about this 5 love languages idea a little bit. My sister loves to talk about it and use the idea within our family.

    I have actually really struggled with what my giving language is.

    On the receiving end, I would say physical touch and words of affirmation are my biggest, with a good hint of quality time.

    I love people deeply and think of them a lot, but how to get that out of my heart and head, how to express that, is difficult.

    I think acts of service has been a way to express my love for other people. I try to work hard at work to show my love for my colleagues, and with family I will do the dishes, etc. I often think I would really like to be good at giving words of affirmation, as they have had such a large impact on me and I would like to reciprocate that. I am just very clumsy at it. In some cases, where I have had a strong mentor who I love as a person, I have written them a letter to express my gratitude and love for them.

    My ex-boyfriend had physical touch as a strong love language. The thing is, I also had that love language, however I very much disliked showing affection in public, while he very much wanted to. I think that is more so linked to my general reserved behaviour in public. I am very much a one on one person. In my past I have been very shy so I think that is a big part of it. It is like I have yearned just to place a hand on another person’s, but I don’t feel the permission to.


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