Move over Words of Affirmation

This morning I took the 5 Love Languages online quiz again prior to sending the link to Paul. The quiz is a compliment to the book by the same name. The concept is that people express appreciation to each another in one of 5 “languages”. In addition people best receive appreciation in one of the 5 as well. Relationships are most successful when you speak the language to the other person that they most appreciate.

Despite the presence of “the L word” in the title, I find this helpful in most all relationships. I think of it as Myers-Briggs of appreciation. For example, if Jonobie appreciates quality time most, why expend effort buying her trinkets?

Every time I’ve taken it, I’ve always maxed out Words of Affirmation1 (give me a sincere compliment and I’m good for a month). I was startled to find that was no longer true. I had a tie for Quality Time and Physical Touch then followed by Words of Affirmation.2

This was really obvious when taking the quiz too (it’s only 30 questions and easy to see which answers map to which language). And it’s dead-on. I still value affirming words, but find myself really missing quality time with friends and physical touch. My friends have probably gotten more hugs from me recently than ever before — and they can expect tons more. It also explains why I don’t enjoy being alone as much as I use to.

I’m more interested in why it changed rather than the change itself. This will give me something to chew on all weekend.

1 Which I blogged a bit about back here.

2 I told Chris this revelation tonight and he laughed at me. Said he could have told me that months ago.

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I'm a gay geek living in Seattle, WA.

3 thoughts on “Move over Words of Affirmation”

  1. Thinking some about why the change…

    I wonder if some of it is that you seem to be working more, and so your amount of available quality time has dropped, causing you to notice it more than usual? And, I suspect work is good right now at filling your words of affirmation need, but it’s rarely going to be able to fill the “touch” aspect (well, unless you’re being inappropriate…).

    I also wonder if now that you’ve met many new friends in the city, you’re interested in focusing on strengthening/deepening those relationships and that comes out in a different set of languages you currently prefer.


    1. I think your theory is very sound.

      Something else I considered was that Chris was very good about quality time and physical touch — so perhaps after being in a relationship with someone who spoke those so strongly I realized how much I appreciate them (ie: what I’ve been missing).


  2. Makes sense; I suspect a lot of people have somewhat malleable love languages and that one of the variants is being around people who are particularly good at one form or another.


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