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August 21, 2018

The language of love: Five ways the emotion can be expressed

The Language Of Love
The Language Of Love

What's your love language? What makes you feel loved by your partner. In his book, The five love languages, author Gary Chapman broke down how different people want to be loved into five ways: gifts, touch, quality time, acts of service and words of affirmation.

According to Chapman, many couples make the mistake of loving their partner using their love language instead of that of their partner.

For example, if your partner's love language is quality time and yours is gifts, you could give all the gifts in the world and think you are being a good partner, but your significant other doesn't think so because to them, all they want is to spend quality time exclusively with you.

Below are Valentine's ideas for each of the love languages.

GIFTS

This person likes gifts. It may be something as simple as a rose or cupcake that wasn't requested for. This person will feel loved because you thought about them enough to get them a gift. It could also be a big gift, like a car.

Chapman says liking gifts doesn't mean one is materialistic, it's just how some people want to be shown love. But discernment applies here. There are gold-diggers out there, both male and female.

Gift ideas for her: if she's a fashionista, take her shoe shopping at, say, Backyard Shoes or Instyle Kenya. Set aside between Sh3,000 and Sh5,000 for a good pair.

If she's a spa kind of girl, get her a spa voucher at a nice hotel. Hotels that offer spa treatments in Nairobi include Devarana Spa at the dusitD2, Angsana Spa at Sankara and Kaya Spa at the Tribe. Spa treatments can go for anything between Sh10,000 and Sh20,000.

If she's a bookworm, get her a voucher from Textbook Centre, or choose a book for her yourself. Set aside Sh2,500 for this.

If she's a foodie, take her for dinner at one of the many restaurants in Nairobi. Refrain from fast food joints. A fine dining experience will do and will set you back anything from Sh4,000 a plate. Think Hemmingways, Villa Rosa Kempinski, Lord Erroll or the InterContinental.

If this is unrealistic, go for the contemporary restaurants that are not fast food-ish, but not fine dining, either. Think Urban Eatery, News Cafe or the good old Java.

For him, a good gift would be the good old watch. You could also get him workout gear, if he's that kind of guy. You could also buy him a bottle of fine whiskey or keep it simple: cook him his favourite meal.

If you are clueless on what to get, go to an online store such as Purpinkgifts.com and order a readymade package. These cost between Sh5,000 and Sh18,000.

QUALITY TIME

If your love wants quality, uninterrupted time, think of doing an activity together, one that needs teamwork. Maybe go ziplining in Kereita Forest near Kijabe. 

Or take a drive from to Naivasha and discover Hell's Gate together, from climbing Fischer's Tower to cycling and going to the 'Devil's bedroom', then winding down at the Olkaria geothermal spa.

If you prefer the Coastal feel, why not try Lamu? Old town is the main attraction.

If your pockets allow, why not take your love to Dubai to spend uninterrupted time together, discovering the desert? Travel company Bonfire Adventures haS a variety of packages.

TOUCH

This could be one of the 'easiest' love languages, at least for your pocket. If your partner likes touch, give him or her many cuddles or be as intimate as you can be this Valentine's Day. 

ACTS OF SERVICE

This person likes someone taking time out of their schedule to help them. Of your partner likes this, maybe pick her car up and take it for service. Maybe help around the house in terms of a home makeover.

WORDS OF AFFIRMATION

Here, spend time listening to your partner and encouraging them about their goals, be it career, health or spiritual. If your partner wants to lose weight, jog with them every other morning and comment positively when the kilos start melting away.

If they want to progress careerwise, help draw a path and remind them how good they are and that they can reach greater heights.

Whatever you do, make it thoughtful.

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