In 1992, anthropologist and philosopher Dr. Gary Chapman published a book called The Five Love Languages, describing a framework for how we communicate love with our partners, be they romantic or platonic. All of us can give and receive love in all five ways, but most of us tend to have a primary way we express and understand love. Being able to communicate what is our dominant love language can often resolve miscommunications between two people who don’t share the same love language.
Now here’s something new (thanks to #therapytok): Our self destructive tendencies are often the converse of our love language. Think about what kinds of self destructive behavior you engage in, and then consider your love language.
My primary love language is quality time: time that is set aside for paying full and undivided attention to a person or topic, often in the physical presence of each other. My self destructive behavior is self-isolation, which is the exact opposite of how I experience love.
Some examples of how your love language may relate to a particular self destructive behavior:
Words of affirmation ➡️ negative self talk
Acts of service ➡️ avoiding self care
Physical touch ➡️ not eating or overeating
Gift giving ➡️ intentionally buying things harmful for us or impulse shopping
It’s perfectly human to feel blue, stressed, scared, etc. What’s important is how we react and take care of ourselves. So if you know how you experience love, next time you’re down, will you show yourself the same care in your own love language?