Self Care & Love Languages

For enough of us we either anticipate or loath February because of Valentine’s Day. Some may say it is another capitalist “holiday” that causes you to spend money. Others may say that they don’t need one day to show how they feel about someone else because they do so year round. 

A few months ago I heard a wonderful young lady I’ve had the pleasure of befriending, Brittany Josephina on the podcast Black Girl In Om. In this episode Brittany shared how knowing your Love Language can give you some tools for practicing self care. I had an "aha" moment as Brittany explained this practice.

Unfamiliar with the Love Languages? Here is how author the of The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts Gary Chapman explains them. 

“My conclusion after thirty years of marriage counseling is that there are basically five emotional love languages—five ways that people speak and understand emotional love. In the field of linguistics a language may have numerous dialects or variations. Similarly, within the five basic emotional love languages, there are many dialects....The important thing is to speak the love language of your spouse.”

Kristin Wong of LifeHacker simply explains each love language as following:

  • Words of Affirmation: Expressing affection through spoken affection, praise, or appreciation. 

  • Acts of Service: Actions, rather than words, are used to show and receive love.

  • Receiving Gifts: Gifting is symbolic of love and affection.

  • Quality Time: Expressing affection with undivided, undistracted attention.

  • Physical Touch: It can be sex or holding hands. With this love language, the speaker feels  affection through physical touch

I took the quiz on Gary Chapman site and learned that my love language is "Quality Time". The idea of using my love language to practice self care was intriguing. Upon reflection it made complete sense. I like being alone. I like going places and experiencing things on my own. I'm not antisocial or lonely however, I love being by myself. In my own company.

Here are some ways you can practice self care based upon your love language

Receiving Gifts

  •  buy only what you love
  • gift yourself with an experience on your bucket list
  • invest in your education or advancement 
  • travel
  • sign up for a monthly gift box subscription within your budget

Words of Affirmation

  • daily affirmations
  • reciting mantras
  • journaling your strengths
  • write yourself a love letter
  • write affirmations on post its and place them throughout your home

Quality Time

  • meditate
  • make time for resting and hobbies
  • make sleep and exercise a priority
  • do not over schedule/book or commit yourself
  • spend time in nature
  • plan a retreat

Acts of Service

  • making healthy meals
  •  having an organized and clean home environment
  • schedule regular physical, dental and mental health check ins
  • grooming yourself
  • bake something yummy

 

Physical Touch

  • stretch
  • take a bath with epsom salts or bubbles
  • moisturize your skin ( I say use oils and various shea butters)
  • give yourself a spa treatment
  • wrap up in a soft blanket

Reflection

What is your love language? (you can take the quiz here)

What is one form of self care that you will do this month based on your love language?