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Love Me Out Loud: How to Better Communicate Your Needs with the Five Love Languages

“Expressing love in the right language. We tend to speak our own love language, to express love to others in a language that would make us feel loved. But if it is not his/her primary love language, it will not mean to them what it would mean to us…” - Gary Chapman

When you know better, you do better…

Some of my friends and I have a theory that trying new restaurants together is its own love language. I always enjoy a Bourgeois bar-hop and brunch with my girls (as you can see in the Three New Fashioned Speakeasies to Sneak to This Summer or the Bourgeois Bar Hopping - Three Pink Instagram Ready Restaurants to Enjoy Rose This Season articles), but dating someone who can enjoy the atmosphere and be adventurous with me in my taste pallet escapades is thee one. I very rarely go to the same restaurant twice (unless I love it that much!), and with so many restaurants available between all of the major cities in my area, I live for new with the ones I love. Being able to dress up and look good next to my man whether celebrating a new job (congrats babe!) or just celebrating us, it hits all of my joy senses. Let me get another couple doing their thing out there with us and it’s a guaranteed great memory. What is my most missed and most looked forward to event post-quarantine? Date Night!

Photography by Debonair Visuals

Date night out, day brunch dates, new experience dates are always my favorite. We just spent a lovely weekend away in DC at the Wharf and this was just the change of scenery needed, individually and jointly. Even with the social distancing requirements, we still could walk the strip and be in love and like the other couples with our pda out in the open; in fact, we got our quality time in so hard I barely took any photos. While I can happily create the perfect date night in, my heart is still with trying new environments and new foods together without limitations. That is a different kind of bonding.

We often hear of “love languages”, and we can make up as many as we please, however the textbook list of the five love languages provided by author Gary Chapman include:

Words of Affirmation

Physical Touch

Receiving Gifts

Quality Time

Acts of Service

I agree that the notion that we can only accept one and not all five is ghetto. I do believe that my primary love language is Words of Affirmation, with Acts of Service and Quality Time holding hands and following closely. Of course I enjoy Physical Touch, with my favorite being during Quality Time. I give thought to gifts I give, and my favorite thing to gift is new experiences (which is likely why I always throw in something creative on my hosting menus). When it comes to expressing my love and appreciation through gifts, I will make a point to be budget conscious, I know some can say “it’s the thought that counts” but for me, I never felt it would be appropriate to give the generic version if the cost difference was minuscule, especially if it’s something the recipient was looking forward to receiving. My mother, Mama Bourgeois always taught me that when it comes to gifts, ensure that they deserve it so that you won’t regret it, and if you are going to do it, give it your all.

There are so many thoughts on where our love languages stem from, and many believe it is a result of our childhood, learned or taught. For a young man who was spoiled by his mother, who vowed that her son would want for nothing as a child, Receiving Gifts and Acts of Service could be his love languages that he expects from his woman, similarly, this could be how he displays his affection toward his partner or his family. Additionally, I watched a woman confront her inner child and address the hurt she felt from never being enough for her father and always seeking to gain his approval, attention, and his love, which then resulted in her constant seeking for validation from her partner, with her love language being Words of Affirmation, and I felt that. No matter your primary love language and the experiences that shaped it (although if you can pin point the “why” of your actions, that’s so self aware!), we all have different languages that we speak, and prefer to be used when being spoken to.

If you were unsure of your own or your partner’s love language, or even if you have the type of friendships like mine where you want to actively improve your relationships continuously (seriously, we have a whole diversity and inclusion team, and there are four of us), there are plenty of resources for identifying and expressing your personal love language.

Fierce Marriage provided this lovely breakdown of the five love languages, their definitions, how they are communicated, how they are shown, and the key things to avoid for each. As a fluent speaker in Words of Affirmation, I can attest to living for encouragement, if you follow me on Instagram, you’ll see that I post a quote pertaining to the current issue every morning to start my day, and if you ever come to me asking if you should buy or do something, I am always going to be that friend to say “Treat yourself, you deserve!”. I am the self proclaimed Queen of leaving love letters, and my biggest pet peeve (outside of being left out of the loop) is being criticized without any plan of action or recommendation to correct, I immediately will feel judged and that my efforts were futile, which is incredibly crippling for me.

Love Nudge is a simple yet impressive iPhone app that you can take a 30 question quiz, on your own or with another, and will determine your love language and how much each means to you represented as a percentage. You can synch your results with your partner and be provided “prompts” as alerts to notify you when it would be a good idea to express your emotions through action to cater to the love language presented. I've shown the first five questions as well as my results from the full quiz in the slider above.

These two books stay by my bedside as a reference for healthy relationships.

Relationship Goals: How to Win at Dating, Marriage, and Sex by Pastor Michael Todd is nothing to play with. This book lays out the Word and encourages discussions on what love looks like to you, how your dream relationship looks, and breaks down the history of “why”, as well as how to truly obtain the relationships you desire not only romantically but across all classifications. The “realer than the most real” conversations that are prompted from the separate Study Guide workbook are awesome in providing guidance in how to win at relationships whether single, dating, married, or entangled (is that still a thing?). Pastor Todd in his true H.O.T. (hot, open and transparent) fashion talks to each one of us and provides gems to really propel us forward in the types of Kingdom relationships we strive for.

His Needs, Her Needs: Building an Affair-Proof Marriage by Willard F. Harley Jr. is a fantastic resource to communicate needs of partners, and allows you to read from both the perspectives of her needs, which may include financial stability in maintaining the household as well as honest communication and openness without exemption or omission, and his needs, which may include having a partner who is proud of his accomplishments as well as one who can keep it exciting and be active in different recreational activities. This book has come highly recommended by many sources including my life coach and my therapist, understandably so. No matter whether you are dating, in a relationship, married, or thinking about committing, this is a book to break the ice for some topics you’ve been harping on and may have been unsure how to start the conversation. If you are looking for conflict resolution as well as proaction instead of reaction, this is the book for you.

Do you know your love language? Do you resonate with one, or do you have multiple that speak to you? How do you express your love language, and how do you love to be spoken to? It’s the recreational companionship talked about in His Needs Her Needs for me. Speaking of recreational companionship, changing up your date night routine is an easy way to bring light through new experiences to your relationship. I’m giving the gift of the perfect date night in set up for two to one couple (it can be mother/daughter, girlfriends night in, couple’s date night, etc.) as well as two copies of His Needs Her Needs, one for you and one for your date. I’ll be setting the table and the ambiance for a lovely evening in to create the perfect memory (food not included). All you have to do is:

Share this post and tag @AlexisPJordan and @BourgeoisLivingMagazine

Head to the post on @AlexisPJordan ’s Instagram and tell me:

Your primary love language(s)

One way you express your love language

The ideal way for someone to show their love to you

Tag a friend who you think could use a special date night in, the more friends you tag, the more entries to win <3

I’ll go first…

My primary love language is Words of Affirmation.

The perfect way for me to express my love language is through love notes to encourage my partner.

The ideal way for someone to show their love to me is to acknowledge my efforts (ie. “That was such a well written article”, “That event you hosted looked bomb!”, etc.).

Photography by Debonair Visuals

Feel free to browse the magazine issues or my insta @alexispjordan for more date night in set ups created. Communication in any relationship is key: If you have any questions please feel free to email or DM me !

Welcome to the Speakeasy…

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