Let’s Look: Love Language

Once a month, I link up with Shay and Erika to “look” at different aspects of our lives.

Last month, we looked at our coffee bar areas.

And this month, we’re looking at our love languages 💘.

Years ago, I read this book,

In this book, Gary Chapman writes about the five ways that people give and receive love. The love languages are quality time, gift giving, acts of service, physical touch and words of affirmation.

It’s so easy to show love the way that we feel loved. The challenge comes in when we have to show love in the way that our spouse feels loves. It’s especially difficult when the two of you speak two completely different languages.

You may be giving him gifts and all he wants from you are words of affirmation. When we know each other’s language and we speak it, it helps tremendously in a marriage and any relationship for that matter.

At the end of the book, he includes a fun little quiz that you and your spouse can do to find out your love language.

You can also take the quiz, here! They also have a quiz for children, teens and singles.

Alright, so what’s our love language?

When I read this book years ago, my primary language was quality time and secondary was gift giving.

During those years, I had terrible panic attacks and anxiety. I was constantly in a fear and panic state of mind. I say all this because I needed Jospeh with me 24/7. He was the only person that made me feel safe. So quality time for sure was what I needed then. And he was always so good at giving that to me.

I took the test again yesterday to see if I’ve changed and I haven’t too much. My primary is gift giving and almost tied for second are acts of service and quality time. I think it’s totally accurate.

I love giving and receiving gifts. They don’t have to be big and expensive. The smallest of gifts make me happy. I think it’s because the thought that someone puts into getting you something means that they thought of you. And that makes me feel loved.

When we were dating, Joseph would buy me flowers every month on our “monthly anniversary” and he would give me greeting cards all the time. All. The. Time. Receiving these made me feel so loved. I still have many of them in my memory box.

Acts of service also speak to my heart in a big way. I love it when he cleans up the kitchen after dinner or when he makes the bed in the morning. I also love when he helps me switch a load of laundry over or when he picks up the kids from school for me in the afternoons.

Spending time with Joseph is my favorite thing to do. I love going anywhere with him. What I’m loving the most right now is working on our investment projects together.

And now for Joseph’s love language. Well…touch, touch, touch ha! It’s all about the physical touch. Joseph took the test again and it has not changed. His primary is physical touch and secondary is quality time. When I was telling him his results, he said “see, I just want your body and your time” 🤪🤣!

He’s so crazy!

Marriage is not easy, but it can be very rewarding and fulfilling when we are committed to speaking each other’s languages.

Here are a couple of posts about marriage that I’ve written in the past:

Love is a Choice

Love and Respect in Marriage

I got to thinking about my kiddos and their love languages. I think I’m going to have them take the quiz. I’m super curious as to what each of their languages are.

If I had to guess… Jojo would be words of affirmation and physical touch, Mary is gifts for sure! And Mackenzie’s is physical touch. Let’s see how well I do! I’ll keep y’all posted!

Now it’s your turn, what’s your love language?! I want to know!

This was such a fun topic. Next month, we are looking at our perfect night in. I can’t wait to share it with you!

I hope y’all have a wonderful Wednesday, friends!!

XO

P.S. This post contains an affiliate link. Thank you for supporting my blog!

Love is a Choice

Good morning, friends!

Yesterday was a day, let me tell ya! You know those days when you drop everything, bump into everything, run late to everything, forget to put on deodorant? Yeah, it was one of those, ha!

But we survived (woohoo) and here we are…hello, Tuesday. So glad you are here!

So with it being the week of Valentines… I know, unpopular opinion, but I love Valentines Day. Pink is my favorite color and flowers are my favorite thing to buy for myself. There’s just something about fresh flowers sitting on my kitchen counter that makes me happy.

But like I was saying, with it being the week of LOVE (oooooo), I wanted to share something pretty personal with you.

It’s easy to assume that we all have it all together, right? Social media is a place where, for the most part, is filled with pretty and filtered pictures. I always try to spread joy in my posts and I don’t want to come at you with all of my frustrations every single day because let’s be real, that would not be fun.

But every now and then, I feel like I need to show you that my life isn’t perfect and that I have so much that I need and I’m working on.

Joseph and I have been together since high school. We’ve been friends since middle school. We have grown up together, we were best friends before we were dating and we have a very special relationship. But like all marriages, we have our hard seasons. We disagree and we get on each other’s nerves. We are human.

We’ve had a really busy season of life with work and kids. We’ve also added more projects and have expanded our real estate investment business so we have something going on constantly. We are thankful for the work, but sometimes the busyness can make things a little tense around the home.

When busyness strikes or a new project takes up our time, we can become very short with each other and quick to bicker over the smallest of things, ugh.

I know that we are not alone in these struggles so I wanted to share some of the things that help us get back on track.

First and foremost, we acknowledge and admit that we are being short with each other. Now, this doesn’t always happen right away. Throughout the years, we’ve been able to shorten the time it takes to acknowledge it, but it still takes us a day or so. And sometimes our stubborn selves just don’t want to acknowledge it, ha!

We can all feel when we’re at odds with our partner. We are short with each other, easily annoyed, we probably don’t say much to each other and we lay in the bed as far from each other as possible.

At times, we even find ourselves being quick to snap at our kiddos, because placing our frustration on them just seems easier. Ugh, I hate when I do this.

But you know, just as when we come to Jesus and admit and acknowledge our sins, we have to do the same within our marriage. Acknowledge that there’s something going on that seems to be rocking our world.

Once you’ve acknowledged it, you need to work on yourself. Yes, you, on yourself. Don’t think about all of the things that your spouse should and could be doing. Take a moment and check yourself. What are you doing that’s making things worse? Pray and ask God to reveal that to you I promise, He will. Ask Him to soften your heart towards your spouse and to help you love them as He loves us. Also pray for God to give you wisdom and words to sit and talk things out with your spouse. Because you need to talk it out. Don’t just sweep it under the rug.

Next, talk it out. I am someone who needs to talk things out right then and there. Joseph, not so much. So this has always caused some issues in our marriage. But now that we know that we are different on this, we compromise.

I give him time or I try to anyways ha! And he tries his best, to talk things out.

You may need to give each other space before coming together to talk and that’s ok. Allow each other time to cool down so that you can both be in a good mindset when you discuss whatever it is that’s bothering you.

Sometimes it’s a quick chat and sometimes it takes time.

Communication is key. Your spouse may not know that something they are doing is hurting your feelings or frustrating you.

A good way to approach your spouse is to say,

“Hey babe, yesterday when you snapped at me it made me feel ________.”

Many times they have no idea! Now if you are on the receiving end of this, take a minute to put yourself in their shoes and acknowledge that what you did, hurt them. Maybe you didn’t intend to. Surely you didn’t. Apologize and tell them.

Find ways to help you understand each other and promise each other to do and be better.

Forgive each other and move forward. Don’t keep bringing up the past. Just as God doesn’t bring up our past mistakes, don’t do it to your spouse.

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9

Always, always assume the best of your spouse. This is a big one. After God, they are the most important relationship in your life. When the enemy tries to come at you with lies about your spouse, don’t let him. You know your spouse. You know they love you. Don’t fall in that trap.

Show your spouse love. Love is action. Figure out their love language and speak it frequently.

“If you truly want to love someone begin in small ways.” (Gary Chapman)

I know that there are bigger issues in a marriage that may require professional help. Don’t be embarrassed to ask for it. Find a marriage counselor. It’s ok to need help.

We can’t be at peace within ourselves without first, seeking God. We can’t acknowledge and admit and work on ourselves without God’s help. We can’t assume the best without God. But with God, nothing is imposible. Nothing is too far gone.

You may feel frustrated in your marriage right now. I encourage you to seek Jesus. Understand that only He can fill the void in your heart. Our spouses will fail us, but Jesus never will. We can not except our spouse to fill our every need. Only Jesus can do that.

And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19

Be willing to be unhappy while working things out. Our pastor said this on Sunday and it made so much sense. We can be joyful in all circumstances even when we aren’t happy about them.

Ask God to give you joy amidst the hard times. Choose to be ok with the fact that things aren’t great right now, but if you keep fighting and working things out, they will get better. You will experience happiness in your marriage again.

You may think that your marriage is too far gone. Or that there is no hope left. I will say it again, Nothing is too far gone for God. Choose today to fight.

Love is not a feeling. Love is a choice. A choice that we make to love one another no matter what. For better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part.

Choose love, today.

“Life is not over until it is over. Today is the day to turn your life in a positive direction.” (Gary Chapman)

I hope this encouraged you today.

Have a great Tuesday!

XO

Love and Respect in Marriage

Good morning, babes!

A couple of years ago, I read a book that really changed the way I look at Joseph. Joseph and I are high school sweethearts. We met in middle school and slowly became best friends. We hesitated to date each other because we were terrified that it would ruin our friendship. But Joseph finally decided to ask me out on October of 2000 and the rest is history!

I cannot believe it’s been 20 years!

Our relationship has always been one where we both choose eachother before anyone or anything. He is my best friend, truly.

20 years is a long time and with the years, the struggles most certainly came. When I went through anxiety, depression and panic attacks, it was hard. There were days that he just wanted to walk away. We were newlyweds. It was supposed to be marriage bliss, but instead it was a nightmare. As hard as it was, I am so thankful for the journey because it made us who we are today. And I tell him all the time that I’m thankful he stayed.

The book I read is Love and Respect by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs. I recommend it to everyone. Whether you are going through marriage bliss or you are struggling, read it. It will change your marriage!

Ephesians 5:33 says, “Each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.” Love and Respect.

Dr. Eggerichs talks about the crazy cycle which is this: Without love, she reacts without respect. Without respect, he reacts without love. This book made me realize how my actions were being disrespectful to Joseph and made me understand why we would end up in heated disagreements. It also opened my eyes to realizing a huge fear of mine. Which was losing Joseph’s love to other things.

Example… golf. Raise your hand if your husband loves golf. Then you’ll probably understand where I’m about to go with this. Joseph loves to play golf. But every time he went to play we would get into a huge argument. HUGE!! I couldn’t figure out why it aggravated me so bad for him to play golf and honestly I hated myself for being such a crazy wife about it.

The aha moment came as I read this book while he was gone on a golf trip to Cabo. I was so mad at him for going to Cabo on this golf trip and I couldn’t figure out why. I am not one to cry, but y’all I cried! I cried the entire day he left for the trip. It was ridiculous really. And it ruined his day because Joseph loves me so much and his desire is always to do what makes me happy. He knew I wasn’t happy and it completely crushed him.

As I read this book I realized that I feared him loving golf and hanging out with the guys more than me. I remember sitting there crying my eyes out and asking God why I was having such a hard time with this and it came clear as day. I didn’t want to lose Joseph’s love and him choosing to play golf with his guy friends made me feel like he was choosing something other than me. I remember calling him the next day and spending about an hour on the phone crying and confessing all of my feelings to him.

I realized the enemy was stirring the pot by feeding lies to me. Joseph loves me. Him playing golf is not him choosing it before me. Such a silly thing to think, but for me it was serious. I developed this fear that Joseph was going to stop loving me and y’all….that produced this deep ache in my soul. This fear the devil was using was torturing me to the core. And it was causing terrible arguments in our marriage. I also realized that the way I was acting towards him was making him feel disrespected which was causing him to react in a way that made me feel unloved. Such a crazy cycle! I remember reading this and cringing….

“No husband feels affection toward a wife who appears to have contempt for who he is as a human being. The key to creating fond feelings of love in a husband toward his wife is through showing him unconditional respect.”

Gosh…I was making Joseph feel like he was a failure as a husband. But I was also putting him in a corner and expecting him to not have a life outside of me for fear that he would pick it over me. Dr. Eggerichs also writes, “….when men hear negative criticism, it doesn’t take them long to start interpreting that as contempt for who they are as men.” Who was I telling Joseph he was with my actions? I was telling him that he was a horrible husband who didn’t love his wife because he liked to spend a couple of hours on a golf course with his friends. Ugh…

“Respect does something to the soul of a man. God made him that way.”

“A wife who brings shame on her husband is like sickness in his bones.” Proverbs 12:4

I realized that I was saying ” I need your love,” but instead Joseph was hearing “I don’t respect you.”

I confessed this to Joseph and felt so free afterwards. This lie that the enemy had used to torture me was finally out in the open and no longer keeping me captive.

I remember reading the chapter about his desire for shoulder-to-shoulder friendship and being completely convicted. Dr. Eggerichs writes that men communicate by sharing experiences and women communicate by talking about the experiences to each other. Men share their experiences by sharing an activity. He gives bullet points of ways that our husbands will feel that we value their shoulder-to-shoulder friendships. Here are a couple of bullet points that he shared that I felt were directed straight at me.

  • You respond to his invitation to engage in recreational activities together or you come along to watch him (you don’t have to go every time, but just now and then will energize him more than you realize.
  • You encourage him to spend time alone, which energizes him to reconnect with you later.
  • You don’t denounce his shoulder-to shoulder activities with his male friends to get him to spend more face-to-face time with you. Respect his friendships, and he will be more likely to want you to join him shoulder-to-shoulder at other times.

I realized that day how crazy I was being. Joseph always encourages me to have my time and here I am degrading him and making him feel like a terrible human for doing something he loves to do.

It’s taken some time, but I have really tried my hardest to be better at my response when Joseph plays golf. Through this experience, it allowed both of us to talk about ways to help us love and respect each other better.

Now, all of this wouldn’t be possible if it wasn’t for God completely being involved. He brought this book to my life and He spoke to me through it. We are at our best when God is first and we are each other’s second.

I share all this because on Monday while we were in Hilton Head, we had some extra time before dinner and I knew my hubby was dying to get on the golf course. He offered to go shopping with me and told me to go get a pedicure while he played a couple of holes. But you know what, instead of doing what I wanted to do which he would’ve been just fine doing, I let him choose.

And by now, you know exactly what he chose! We spent a couple of hours doing what he loves. Or better said, I watched him do what he loves to do. And y’all, it was so good for the both of us. It reminded me that I need to let him choose more often.

And after we played we went to dinner and then he took me to TJ Maxx to buy a couple of my favorite things!

Coffee mugs and Sand and Fog candles ha!

I don’t know if you find yourself in marriage bliss or in a nightmare, but I do want to encourage you today. Hard times will come but don’t give up. Now, you may ask what about Joseph? I’m sure he had some faults, too. Of course, he’s human, but what I’ve learned is that I’m in charge of me. I have a choice to respond or react. And if I focus on working on me and choose to pray first verses nagging or complaining, God will take care of the rest.

Dr. Eggerichs puts it this way, “In the ultimate sense, your marriage has nothing to do with your spouse. It has everything to do with your relationship to Jesus Christ.” Remember what I said about God first and us second? God must take priority in your life, your marriage and your family. Only then, will you be ready to face those difficulties and trials that will most certainly come.

Love is a choice. Love is not a feeling. Things are great at first, but you must choose to love even when it’s hard to love your spouse. The enemy wants nothing more than to destroy your marriage. Declare war on the enemy and the lies that he feeds you and choose to trust and believe in the promises that God gives you. Choose to stay. Choose to fight. Keep your eyes on christ and build your marriage on the rock so that when those storms come, it will not be swept away.

Of course this doesn’t apply when there’s any kind of abuse….if that’s happening then please seek help.

I do hope this encourages you today to fight for your spouse by putting God first always. And I also hope that this helps someone see the lies that the enemy is feeding you are just that, lies. Talk to God about it and then be open with your spouse. Only then will you experience freedom.

So today, find something that your husband loves to do and join him! Whether it’s golf, playing video games, fishing or just watching sports on tv.

I hope you all have a wonderful Wednesday! Thank you for reading today!

XO


Oh! And order the book Love and Respect!

PS – this post contained an affiliate link… thank you so much for reading and supporting my blog!