So, how did you lose your partner’s love? Did you cheat? Lie? Or did you just let them slip away by failing to give them the attention and love they needed. Maybe they lost interest because you were more interested in yourself. Whatever the case, it’s not too late to win back their love. But first, think about why you let their love fade in the first place and why you want it back. Don’t win back their love just for the sake of winning. Make sure you’re 100% committed to making a long-term relationship with this person work, no matter the effort. And if you’re not, set them free. On the other hand, if you feel you did everything right and they’re the one that lost interest and walked away, make sure they’re really worth the effort before putting your time and energy into pursuing something that probably wasn’t going to work in the first place. Maybe your goals aren’t aligned or your values.
Before you can work on building the love between you again, you must first:
> Ask your partner for forgiveness, even if you didn’t intend to do anything wrong, you managed to let their love slip away by neglecting their needs
> Ask your partner what they need from you in order to strengthen things between you
> Be honest about how you feel and why you let things go the way they did
> Do as much as you possibly can to show your love to your partner and to ensure they get the message that you’re serious, following the love languages, below
People both express and understand love in different ways. In many circumstances people in relationships aren’t using the same language to express their love for one another. This can lead to doubt about the relationship, misunderstandings and a lack of trust, where there really is no need for it. Once we can understand and communicate in the other person’s language this enables the people in the relationship to get the most out of it.
In 1995 Gary Chapman wrote a ground breaking book called “The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts”. Since then it has sold over 10 million copies worldwide. Although I’m going to explore his ideas here I encourage you to go out and read it for yourself or download the audiobook if you haven’t already done so to gain an even deeper understanding of his invaluable insights. The 5 Love Languages are:
Words of affirmation. This isn’t just include saying ‘I love you’, although this of course is invaluable. It incorporates all the genuine and meaningful words you use to express your love for another and why you love them. For example, rather than saying “Thanks for helping”, saying “Thank you so much for helping me carry the shopping in today, it saved me loads of time and energy. I’m really impressed with the initiative you showed, doing it without being asked. It shows me that you’re really thoughtful and caring and I just love that about you.” Your partner will really feel heard, understood, appreciated and loved.
Acts of serviceare all those little things you can do to help people – packing your child’s lunch, fixing their broken toy, helping your partner fill in a form, make an important phone call and so on.
Receiving giftsis pretty self-explanatory and something most of us can understand very easily. With this love language though you have to be really careful that the gift doesn’t get linked to positive behaviour or used as a reward. Especially for men, make sure you don’t buy your woman something every time she ‘puts out’, because this is just telling her you only love her when she does. It must simply be a ‘just because I love you’ gift. If your partner responds positively to gifts, don’t despair, it doesn’t mean you have to spend a mountain of money on them. They love anything that just shows them you’re thinking of them, especially when you are apart. It could be a postcard sent when you’re away, a simple souvenir or something for which you can say “I saw this and thought of you”.
Quality timecan be one of the most challenging love languages to express, particularly for busy families. It requires you to set some time aside to spend with your spouse or child one on one focussing on something they enjoy doing. Quality time does not include helping each other with the washing up or the vacuuming, or running errands together. It’s an activity you do together through which you can really connect and learn to understand each other even more. Partners should commit to scheduling regular date nights, which are organised by the partner whose love language isn’t time. This is really important, because otherwise it’s like a gift that they buy themselves with money you gave them, not very loving at all! Mobiles must be switched off during this quality time between you and your treasure.
When we think of Physical touchas a love language, many think of that physical touch between adults… For adults whose love language is physical touch, this isn’t even confined to that sort of touch. It’s holding hands, massage, a simple stroke of the back as you pass them in the hallway.
Everyone uses all of the love languages but for each individual they tend to have one stand out one. If they’re not shown love in this way, they may ‘know’ logically that their partner loves them, but until they can ‘feel’ it, through their love language, they will most likely feel as though there is a big sad hollow in their heart, desperately waiting to be filled. To figure out your partner’s love language, test them one by one and see which one gets the best response.
Things to give thought to this week:
· What is responsible for the losing of your partner’s love?
· What is your partner’s love language? Find ways to express your love through this language.
· Think about your love language, and when the opportunity arises, tell your partner all about it.
· If you are successful in winning back your partner’s love, how will you ensure you maintain it?