Have you read “The 5 love languages”? It’s brilliant. So many of my business clients have (re-)read and appreciated learning these 5 simple languages.
Because, we can’t be successful in our businesses and with our teams sustainably, if we’re not happy, if our home life is not improving, too. And the love languages are so much more than about love. It’s about how we help each other feel seen, feel enough, feel valued. Whether it’s in a relationship, between friends or at work.
So, here’s the short version: most of us run on empty tanks. Empty love tanks. Not feeling seen, heard, loved. Even if we have lots of good people around us, we don’t feel truly valued.
The thing is, our love tanks fill up differently. So, even if we try showing each other that we care and appreciate each other, often it’s like speaking French to a Chinese. The message doesn’t get through.
Just get the book or listen on audible. It’s a simple concept – the challenge comes when learning and applying the new language, that of your partner, child or friend. Practising works, like always.
For now, let’s just use the example of how you say, “thank you”. We can even take it into a business setting, as some leading companies have already started using the love languages in the staff work. Personalising how we show that we appreciate you and the work you’re doing. When we put the effort into thanking others, we may as well show it in a language and a dialect that the other person understands, that lights them up.
How would YOU light up most, when being thanked: a) being thanked publicly at the next team meeting, b) having a quality conversation with your boss understanding what they really appreciate about what you do, c) getting a hamper or a gift voucher, d) your boss doing something for you that really matters, or e) (this is hilarious, because the 5th language is touch, can you see how HR will get really nervous here?!) getting an appreciating hand on your shoulder or a great hug.
Of course, we may use all of them at once, but let’s hone in on the main one that will light you up – which one would you nearly be ready to let go of all the others to have? And if you’re a mis-matcher and work best from the bottom up, rank the 5 from which one would make you freak out totally and have the opposite effect, and see which one is left at the top.
Very often, the language that we understand and crave ourselves, is the language we speak to others. But most often, we’re with people different to ourselves, and we connect and build respect and trust so much better if we start learning their language.
So, what is YOUR thank you language? And what’s the language of your partner, child, friend or team members? Enjoy exploring (and re-reading the book – you will thank yourself later).