New Episode! Why Kids Won't Wear Coats with Sara Kostelnik
Feb. 14, 2023

Love Languages with Malia Sperry

Happy Valentines Day. There’s no better occasion to discuss love languages! 

When do you feel loved? Is it when you receive a gift? Or maybe when someone gives you a hug? Whether your love language is words of affirmation or physical touch…it is important to know what makes you feel loved.  

Join me and my dear friend Malia Sperry, a psychologist and a mother of two teenagers - join us for a fun conversation that speaks directly to our hearts and yours! 


The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman ( As an Amazon affiliate, at no extra cost to you, we will earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.)

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Hi, and welcome to Real Life Momz I'm your host, Lisa Foster, and Real Life Momz is a podcast. It's all about connecting moms through real parenting conversations. I believe that moms have so much insight and knowledge, and together we are powerful on this podcast we give moms a voice to tell their stories and share their expertise and resources through real conversations. And this week is Valentine's Day. So I asked my good friend Malia Sperry to join me today for our conversation about love 

Languages. Hi Malia. Welcome to Real Life Momz It's always so nice to have you on the show. You're back on the show. You were there for our first season and this, um, week we are going to talk about love languages, and I'm just really excited that you are gonna dive into this topic with 

Me. Great. I'm happy to be here. 

Well, good. I think for our listeners, first of all, I should tell our listeners that we are really good friends and we do a lot of, I, I would call, walk, and talk therapy because we walk every week together. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, and we talk through all our problems. So I feel like you actually introduced Love Languages to me on one of our fabulous weekly walks. Honestly, <laugh>. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So they could have a little background about us. 

Yeah, totally. Yeah. We probably have talked about this, amongst many other things, on our walks. I'm proud of you for remembering that we talked about it cuz most of the time, we forget what we talked about. But this is good. And, my understanding is we're talking about this because Valentine's Day is coming.

Is that right? It's true. Yes. I feel like love languages are so important, and I think for me, I really found the value because as a parent, you know, I don't have a lot of extra time, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And when I'm spending time thinking I'm giving love to, uh, uh, you know, one of my family members, when it's not what they actually need mm-hmm. <affirmative>, they don't even feel it. So mm-hmm. <affirmative>, that's why I think these are so important because then I can be giving what they actually need. They can feel it and feel, feel full, and yeah. 

It's just so much better for everybody. 

Yeah. Meet the need, meet the need, instead of wasting time. 

<laugh> instead of wasting time. It's 

More efficient. 

I know we are efficient as parents, but let's, let's first start with, like, what are the love languages? Cuz there might be people who, have never ever heard about it, so mm-hmm. <affirmative>, do you wanna talk a little bit about what love languages actually are? 

Yeah, yeah. So, so the gist of love languages is thinking about ways in which we give and receive love, right? Um, and thinking about what's meaningful to us, meaning what makes us feel loved, and then what makes people in our lives feel love from us, right? And relationship. And the main census that there are about five love languages. And when we're looking at the five love languages, your options essentially are quality time, words of affirmation, physical touch, gifts, and acts of service. 

So those are the five options. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And we can talk about what they are, what they mean because there's some overlap. Sometimes it feels like, um, mm-hmm. <affirmative>, you know, when we're, when we're talking about like, what is meaningful to me, I, 

I do wanna, like, maybe dip into them a little bit because, Yeah, like, for instance, like words of affirmation, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, I would think of like, oh, it's an I love you. Or telling them they did a good job but, but it could also be written words, which I didn't realize. Um mm-hmm. <affirmative> is also could be important to them too. 

So words of affirmation, which should we start with that one? Yeah, that, that's a popular one in my family. <laugh>, so that's good. Um, which is, you know, just saying positive reflections of the per, you know, of the person that you love. Um, and like you're, you said Lisa, like that can be verbally, that can be text, that can be a note here and there. Just sort of acknowledgement, affirmation, sometimes even just really em, empathy, listening. Mm-hmm. 

<affirmative>, you know, that, that can feel like affirming also. 

Yeah. I think you also mentioned once on our, on our walks is that words, um, be, if someone is like, that's their loved language, they can actually be really hurt by like, cutting words, you know? That's actually even worse for them because that is their language. And to hear something not so positive could 

be worse. Not affirming <laugh>, right? Yes. Yes. So my son and husband, this is both of their top ones. Um, and I reconfirmed this this morning before our podcast, cuz I wanted to make sure I had it right, <laugh>. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. I'm like, and it was it, the conversation about words of affirmation followed, right? After a moment where my son was sitting at the table eating breakfast and the dog was sitting next to him and I said, oh, you are so handsome. 

And I'm talking to the dog, <laugh>, and then my son looks up with this, please look, honestly cause it's words of affirmation. And I looked at him and I'm like, and you are too <laugh>. Like, cause I realized that he was perking up. This is a word of affirmation. I don't think the dog really cared what I was saying, <laugh>. But the, but my son, you know, he looked so bright and happy, like, and he was eating and trying to do his homework at the same time, but still, because it's his language, you know, he just perked up and beaming, right? 

Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And I just remembered to direct it towards him too. We had a little bit of a chuckle afterwards cuz he realized I was starting with the dog and then I was going to him. But, you know, talking about just, you've done a good job, thank yous, things like that. <laugh>, I really appreciate this about you. 

My husband as well is a words of affirmation. You know him? Yes. This is is huge for him as well. And, and it, and honestly it's a hard one for me mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Like, um, I am like anti words of affirmation, <laugh>. And it's, and it's really funny because my husband, because he is words of affirmation, he will often give me words of affirmation and I don't even hear it because it's not my love language, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And in return, I, I end up giving him my love language, which he doesn't even see, which is quality time or acts of service is usually my love language. 

It, it flops, but he doesn't even like, you know, see that. So we're kind of giving each other the wrong, wrong ones. But I do find words of affirmation for me to also give. It's really hard. Really hard. And I know he needs that. 

Yeah. And I was thinking about that too, that this, it's not high on my list either. And also be, you know, so I forget to give it because it's, sometimes I even forget it's one of the love languages cuz it's that far down for me. Like words of that for me, <laugh>, I don't even remember, but I was reflecting on it and thinking, I think it's easier for me to give in a parenting role, words of affirmation, because that's sort of part of the nurturing mom energy that, you know, from when they're very young, like, oh look, you took a step. 

Or, oh, look at you. You know, like positive feedback. But I really forget with my husband because he's just something like unload the dishwasher, which I think is just being a good roommate, but he's really looking, sometimes he pats himself on the back, <laugh>, nice job, good job. And I'm like, oh yes, thank you for doing that. I don't expect that or want that necessarily in return for all the little, you know mm-hmm. <affirmative> things. I don't need a lot of the, the verbal feedback about it yet. It, it is harder to remember, especially, you know, in that dynamic because I think of us as kind of peers, you know? 

And not, it's not, it doesn't pull as much for me to, to remember to say positive reflections, but 

It does, it means like, it 

Means a 

Lot that that is what fills my husband. Uhhuh <affirmative> so much. And so it is something that I ha to work on that I'm still always working on because yeah, I think if you are a words of affirmation person and you're not getting it, it it's almost hurtful. 

Oh yeah. Yeah.  especially it, it, well there's the absence of the words of affirmations, which is then not meeting their love language. But then if you say something <laugh> critical, that's actually like maybe emptying the bucket, <laugh> the person, right? So that, that's, um, I have to remember that too. 

Yeah. Yes. Okay. So the second one, what, what's your second? I 

Think we could go to, um, acts of service, because that's high on your list 

And my list. Oh my goodness. And I do think, I do think it's high on a lot of parents list, a lot of moms, and I have to ask you this because you are, you're kind of like a guru for me in this area. But, um, you know, is it, is it important to me because I am doing so many acts of service and I don't get them, you know? Or is it really my love language? I, 

I think it's hard to know, know, because when I was talking with my family about this this morning, my husband was like, I didn't know acts of service was your top love language <laugh>. Cause like, I was like, um, I think it's been that way for a while. He's like, I thought years ago you said it was quality time. And I thought about it and I'm like, maybe it used to be mm-hmm. <affirmative> and maybe it's shifted, but it's definitely, at least for the last 10 years, <laugh> in acts of service. Yeah. So I don't even remember, you know, like that, that maybe has flipped based on just need and maybe doing so many acts of service and feeling like I'm giving a lot and this would be a nice way to receive. 

So acts of services, like doing helpful things to take, you know, burdens off of somebody's plate, right? 

Essentially. Yes. Make their life a little bit easier. And boy, those things are very touching for me, <laugh>, when they happen, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, like for my birthday, my daughter unasked cleaned out my bathroom cabinets and reorganized everything and I almost cried. I was so touched and happy. Yeah. That's an act of service, right? Like, I could have done that, but I, I, it's like not a fun task and re you know, throwing out expired things and organizing your shampoos and <laugh>, right. 

That type of thing. And so she did that and it was really, i i I took a moment to really acknowledge how meaningful that was to me with words of affirmation. <laugh>, 

Is that her, is that her love language? No, 

I think, I think hers is quality time. Okay. But I don't think words of affirmation are gonna hurt after somebody does an act of service. <laugh>. Right, right, 


I mean, that's, that's definitely positive reinforcement for that. Um, and just how much that meant to me so that she could know that I felt the love in that. But yeah, I, I hear what you're saying. Is it, like, on our list as busy moms, you know, anything that takes something off our plate just feels wonderful. <laugh> one less thing. <laugh>. 

Yeah. Well, and it's funny because I've taken the tests and we'll talk about like where to find these tests and things like that. But I've taken the love language tests and, and initially it was acts of service up there, up there, up there. And then my husband and I actually had this conversation a actually, it's funny because it came out of, I actually read the book The Five Love Languages Uhhuh by, by Dr. Chapman and read him this like passage, which basically was this cute little old couple. And the woman's love language was acts of service and the husbands was words of affirmation, Uhhuh <affirmative>. 

And I said, it's so cute because that that's us, right? Uhhuh <affirmative>, we, we talked about it, that's us. And what happened in the book, it was the woman was sitting, you know, around and doing like, knitting or whatever she was doing, and the husband was like dusting the blinds mm-hmm. <affirmative>. 

And as he was dusting the blinds, she turns to him and goes, I love you too. Because he needed the words of affirmation, right? So that I Love You too, was his words of affirmation. And her, his love to her was actually dusting the blind. Right. And I, I said that to my husband and he like, oh, I get it. And I have to say, after that little story that I shared with him, he started, I mean, he does the dishes still. Like he's always cleaning the kitchen, doing the dishes. And cuz I think that's his way, instead of, he used to always tell me how much, how, you know, beautiful I am or that he loves me, but I can, like, I didn't even hear them. 

And I know that's like, I feels horrible, but, but it, but I can see the dishes and that filled me. And he knew that Uhhuh and so he's still doing that. So I retook the test also before coming on this podcast. And guess what? Quality time is my first one now. 

Uhhuh <affirmative> because acts of service is being met. Maybe a need 

Probably. Right. It's probably being met. So it's interesting that maybe they can shift and change too. 

Well, yeah, I was thinking that my husband says this thing that, that his is words of affirmation. And he says, but maybe if, if I, as his partner wasn't doing so many acts of service, acts of service would be higher on his list. But because that's my love language, I, and I'm always doing that for other people and it's just kind of my role also as mom sometimes. But that, that his awareness is that that's low on his list because potentially that need is already met mm-hmm. 

In the family. Uh, and then, um, yeah. So maybe, uh, our love language just can even shift depending on age, stage of life and the relationships we're in Yeah. What's being met and what's not mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Right? Like, so, yeah. 

Yeah. That's an interesting point that you were making, which was we tend to give the love language that we want to receive. Right. You know, and that doesn't, it's like, I don't understand. I'm giving you exactly what you, you think the person needs, but they don't, so that's, it's interesting. Yeah. Yes. 

Right. It's nice that I did their laundry or something like that. But what they really want <laugh>, you know, is a different expression of love. And I think that's what I like about the concept of the love languages is just like expanding our view beyond our own mm-hmm. <affirmative>, you know, like, because of course we often think other people look at the world through the lens that we do mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Right. And it's helpful to kind of recognize that that's not the case. And especially in relationships, like in a family mm-hmm. 

<affirmative> system mm-hmm. <affirmative> just acknowledge and meet the needs of those you do love and you want them to feel loved by you <laugh>. 

Right. So 

Yes. Right. That's stuff that you want. That I think, I think that's really cool that acts of service <laugh> or have been met and you've moved back to quality time. 

That's really, and I moved to quality time, which let's, let's talk about quality. 

Let's talk about that <laugh>. Yeah. Yeah. Um, well, yeah. If, if it's your top one, what, what do you, what do you think of when you, when 

You one quality? Yeah. I think of it as that true one-on-one interaction with somebody. Yeah. But it's, it's, it's like the person is listening to me. Um, there's no phones, there's, there's no distractions. It's that real face-to-face one-to-one time. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> is what I feel fulfilled the most. And I think it does get confused. Like Malia. Honestly, the reason why I love our walks every week is because it is that you and I are walking together, we're talking about personal things, we're listening to each other and I come up and my husband, cuz we walk on our treadmills Right. 

Most of the time when it's nice out we go outside, but most of the time we're on their 

Treadmills. We have gone outside. Yeah, that's okay. Uninterrupted time. Right. But 

My, yeah. My husband can hear us and we're like so vibrant and laughing and because you know why? He's always like, oh my God, you always have such a great time. And I'm like, yes, I feel totally filled after our walks because it is quality time. Yes. So that's, 

Yeah. And we laugh a lot in that quality 

Time, which, which 

Is extra medicine <laugh> for both of us. Yeah, totally. 


Totally. Right. But I do think the uninterrupted is important. It doesn't count for people who quality time is really high on their list. If the person they're spending time with is distracted mm-hmm. <affirmative>, like on their phone or like managing other things, it, it's not meeting the need. Right. Right. It has to be like really focused. Yeah. 


Yeah. Uhhuh <affirmative>. 

Right. Cause if I go out with a kid or my husband and they're like looking at their phone and they're typing uhhuh or they looking, I don't, I come, I don't feel like I do when I go for a walk with you, you know? Like, I feel uhhuh <affirmative>. Like I wasn't heard. I wasn't seen. There was not, that wasn't quality time. 

Like you're together, but you're, it's not meeting that quality time need. Right, exactly. So it's not just being sitting next to each other. Right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, it's like, yeah. Engaging. Yeah. Yeah. That quality time. I do think that is my daughter because being a teen teenage girl, it, it, it sort of sometimes surprises me when she asks me, can we do something together? Just the two of us, you know, because sometimes teenage girls don't wanna do things with her mom. <laugh> Yeah. Like, you know, one-on-one. But I realize that that's like very important or special for her. 

And um, and I see that she does that with her friends too. You know, just some one-on-one quality time and they play cards or they go on a walk or do a baking project and it, I can hear their conversation sometimes and laughter or, or sometimes a phone call, right? 

Mm-hmm. <affirmative> like, uh, like, uh, with somebody far away that they're spending time together uninterrupted. And that definitely fills her up. Um, and, and I have to say, I mean, I don't mind that being her top love language as a <laugh> as a mom because at least then I get to spend some time with her too. Right. Cuz she wants to go out to breakfast or something like that and spend time and talk. She says, can we talk? And I think, oh great. I love, I like this. Even though it's not right now, the top of of my list, it still feels, you know, great to engage with her in that. 


And it's interesting cuz both of my kids, it's their second one, Uhhuh quality time is their second one. And that will bring me to what is their first one, which is physical touch, which is surprising both of them to me. Uhhuh, <affirmative>, both of 'em. Yeah. 

I actually think that physical touch is higher on my son's list than he was willing to admit <laugh>. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> because I, cuz I can feel it when I hug, you know, like hug him or that he connects that way. But something about being a teenage boy doesn't want him to tell me that he really likes that <laugh>. Yeah. But I can feel that he, that a hug or a back rub, you know, just rub pat his back lands with him. But yeah. So is that how they would describe it? Your kids? Like it's a hug, it's a, 

Yeah. So physical touch, you know, it's, it could be snuggling, uhhuh, <affirmative> snuggling, Uhhuh <affirmative>. It could be a hug, it could be holding a hand. Um, yeah, I'll tell a little story and I do wanna point out that physical touch cuz I think when people hear physical touch as a love language, I think they immediately go to sex. I'll be honest. Oh yeah. Like, I, I mean, I forgot. I think I did too. I'm like, oh yeah, sex none. Love it. But it is, it's more, it's, it's not about sex. It's about actually that physical touch of just hugs and cuddles and Right. Yeah. Back 

Rub, non-sexual physical touch and intimacy in that way. Right? Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Give that a lot as a mom. Yeah. Yeah. But I forget, again, this is one of the areas, I think it's my husband's second one, so afterwards of affirmation, he wants physical touch, but I also forget with him because I think I, I, again, it's like the same, um, with the words of affirmation coming easier in the nurturing parenting role. Same with touch, you know, like hugging or whatever. But, you know, sometimes then I, I am hugging the kids leaving and then he's standing there and I'm like, oh yeah, you too <laugh> <laugh> hug too on the way out the door that, because that is a high on his list, you know, second mm-hmm. 

<affirmative> on his list. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> too. Yeah. 

I have a funny story about physical touch I have to put out there and how important it is. Okay. It's not that funny actually, but <laugh>, so my daughter, when she was much younger, um, and before I really understood the love language stuff, you know, we used to do one-on-one time, you know, when you have two kids you like to like, have separate time that you could just do something with your daughter or something with your son, or, you know, just one-on-one time. So, and of course I'm quality time, so of course, right. That's good for me. So I took my daughter out. We spent literally the entire day, the entire day together. 

We went shopping; we bought gifts. We, we just had so much time together and it was so much fun. And we had such a great time. We'd come home and no joke, the girl lost it. 

And she's like, you don't love me. And I was like, what? I was the whole and all I, you know, of course I overreacted and I was like, I just spent money. I just spent my whole time, you know, I had all these things. I don't even understand what's going on. And she's like, you don't love me. And I couldn't understand it. And then what I found out a little later on, guess what her love language is, touch Uhhuh. <affirmative>. I did not hug her. I did not hold her hand. I did not do any of that. I did not fill her bucket at all. That whole day. 

You feel your about there. 

I filled my bug. I, I felt exactly, I felt fabulous <laugh>. Um, so now, now I don't do those whole days anymore. Now I hug her every morning before she comes to, goes to school, hug her. When she comes back, we snuggle. And honestly, that is all she needs. She feels loved. 

I think that's everybody in my family's second one, um, too. And yeah. So hugs all around. 

Just keep hugging. Yeah. 


Yeah. And it's an easy one. It's such an easy one as a parent for, for a kid. The last one though, it brings us to gifts, right? Is that the last one we haven't talked about yet? Gifts. 

Is that the only one we haven't talked about? Yep. Uh, gifts. Yeah. 

Gifts. Yeah. So gifts is interesting because, you know, at first I, when I was, you know, learning about the love languages, I'm like, huh. You know, I guess that's people who just like, like value, um, somebody spending money on them. But really, when you look at what gifts is, it's not that it's, it's more, uh, it does, it's not so much about the monetary value of the, the gift. Uh, it's about the thoughtfulness behind it. 

That it's a physical representation of that thoughtfulness or see being seen and for who you are and what you need and what would bring you joy. So it could be very insignificant cost-wise, but have a big impact on the person if that's on their top of their list. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, um, is receiving gifts often, of course, people who have the love language gifts high on their list are great gift givers themselves. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, right? 

Yeah. Um, can really sort of assess what another person would like, what would bring them joy, you know, and fi and find that, whether it's like remembering your favorite coffee drink or your favorite color <laugh> mm-hmm. <affirmative> or something. And getting something to represent that. Yeah. Really lands with them is feeling like I'm loved and seen. 

Hmm. Yeah. And I can see that I'm gift gifts is my last one. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, it's actually every, everybody in my family, it's their last one. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, oddly enough. Um, but I'm also, I don't feel like I'm a great gift giver. I really don't mm-hmm. <affirmative>, you know, and it comes down to it mm-hmm. <affirmative> and I can see that. But, but when I do receive a, a gift that is so thoughtful, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, I, it does really fill me, it really fills me. Cuz I feel like, you know, they, they really got it. They really know who I am. 

So I can see why. Yeah, I could see why it's important. It just, it's very low on my list. 

Right. That I think it's not very high on my list either. But I, I had an a little bit, uh, initially of kind of a challenge distinguishing between an act of service and a gift because I'm like, to me, an act of service feels like a gift. So is gift is the gift high on my list? Cuz those, those feel like gifts. But really when I was reading about it, the, it's, it's a tangible thing. It's a physical ob you know, representation or object. And so an act of service is often not that necessarily. 

So they're different in that way. But I experience acts of service as little gifts <laugh>, but they Oh, me too. <laugh>. But they don't fall under that category. And actual physical gifts aren't that high on my list. Although I, I totally agree with you that I can feel it when I'm, when I do receive something that's really thoughtful or touching. 

For example, I have this favorite spatula that I've loved for a long time and it's cracking. And my husband was able to track it down. You couldn't find it on Amazon. You had to go like some, I don't know, ran. We, we maybe got it, we don't even know, years ago where we got it and he was able to track it down and find six of them and he put them in my Christmas stocking. I was so thrilled about this, right? Like, this is not a high cost item. This is not a diamond ring <laugh>. I was like, my spatula 

<laugh>, like Right, 

Right. They know. And I felt it. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, right. Like a as if it filling me in. And so I get, I get it. It's just not high on my list either. Yeah. 

Yeah. And that's okay. And that's okay. Right, 

Right. Yeah, no, I'd like to be a good gift giver. <laugh> like, yeah. But I don't think it's high on anyone in my family's list either, you know? So not too high. Maybe my daughter, it's higher than others, but cuz she seems to receive gifts, like, very well. One, that's one of the things about often people who have gifts at higher on their list, it's really important when they do give you a gift to receive it. Well, 

That's a good point. Yeah. 

Because it, you know, that is their expression of love. And then it feels good to them to have it be well, you know, well received. And so I feel like when I'm looking at my family, I'm, my daughter's the best receiver of gifts in that sh it's authentic and genuine and she, she feels it, you know? Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and you feel good giving it to her <laugh> cause because of that reaction. Right. It's right then it's love languages all around. Everybody's needs are being met. 

It's so interesting how important we need to know each other's love language. Right. Because you, you know, I don't wanna give you a gift if you, that's not your love language, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So maybe me doing a service for you Right. Baking you dinner or something and send and bringing it over, that would be Yeah. Feeling of love for you because I've done a service for you. Uhhuh, <affirmative>, and then if I was a gift giver, right. Because I'm still giving you something. Yeah. You, you feeling really good about that and receiving that, then all of a sudden I'm filled too. 

So it's like we have to just make sure that we know each other's love languages a little bit. Right? So we know, you know, a, that we're doing the right thing for that person, but also that we're, when we receive something, we're also giving them the feedback that they 

Need. Yeah, totally. I, I think the other thing to think about or talk about with love language is, is self-love too. Because we've talked a lot about relationships like giving and receiving in our family systems or you know, marriages, parenting, things like that. Um, but really also thinking about how do we give that love to ourself, you know, ourselves, especially up on love day is what I call Valentine's Day Love day. 

If we're thinking about just all kinds of love, like self-love is in there and, you know, I think some of that love languages are easier to figure out how you would give that to yourself than others. <laugh>, right? Yeah. Yeah. So like, for example, gifts. Yeah. You can get yourself a gift <laugh>. Yeah. 

Go buy yourself that. 

Forget yourself. That, you know, that thing that would be a treat or meaningful to you or like a reward type of a thing, you know? And then words of affirmation though, thinking about, okay, well how, how do you do that if that's high on your list? How do you also do positive self-talk words of affirmation for yourself? Right. Which I think sometimes we forget about our inner dialogues and our self-talk. Yes. But giving, if it's high on your list, giving your self affirmations could feel really important as well. 

Yeah. Looking in the mirror and Yeah. Or or writing them down so you can read them every morning. Right. Yeah. You know? Right. Those are all, put 'em on your phone, you're always on your phone. Right. You could look at them and they mm-hmm. <affirmative> maybe just appear right there for you. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, I think there are even apps for that. I feel like there's apps that will give you a, an affirmation that morning. Right? Yeah. Like something positive. I mean, who knows 


That, that might be a good day to get my husband Yeah. <laugh>. Yeah. 

An app, positive affirmation app. And then, you know, even saying things aloud to yourself, like a good job. Yeah. You, you really did. You really handled that well. Yeah. You know, like when you see yourself navigate a challenging situation, that's one that way we can love, you know, love ourselves, is to look at the our love languages and then how to give it Yeah. To others and ourselves. But, so we did gifts, words of affirmation, quality time with yourself is just like taking yourself on a, on a date. 

It could be also reading mm-hmm. <affirmative> or you know, Netflix <laugh> alone. But that's like spending time with yourself. Like, what would be an ideal day for me? Or outing 

Even an hour, I mean the other night mm-hmm. <affirmative>, I had been pulled, like I'd just gotten home from work, but I had to go to this school event and I had to help someone with this or do something with that. And then by like, you know, eight 30 I am finally home and I was just like done. And so I just turned to him, everybody I said, I said, you know, I need some, I just needed some quiet time for myself mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> quality time is important. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and alone time for me is important. And so I just went into another room and I just, I don't even know what I did, but it was beautiful. 

I'll tell you right now, it was beautiful. It was recharging and it was what I needed. So in a sense I gave myself my own love 

Language. Right, right. And it wor and it worked. Oh, totally good. Right. Help if you felt cared for by yourself. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and your family's job then in that situation was just to give you space to do that. 

Yeah. And they, and you know what, I think just having the conversation helps because if I would've just kind of like run into a room and hid without saying what I needed Yeah. Then I think it would've looked at different. Like, where's Mom, I'm gonna interrupt. But they, they knew exactly what I needed. I didn't do it in a yelly way. I just kind of said, oh, I just, you know, I just got home. I really need this amount of time. I'm just gonna take some self time right now. That's it. And nobody bothered me. Nobody asked any questions. And I'm also modeling it for the, for everybody around me that might need to do the same one day and see how accepted it really is. 

But I love that example. I love that you kept, you're like, I don't even know what I did <laugh>, but I know it was quality. I'm with myself. And that was all that matters. Cuz it's really not about the activity itself, right. It's about just that quality of the time. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Right, right. 

Yeah. Yeah. Totally. Yeah. Yeah. So I love that. I love that concept and thank thank you for bringing that up to giving it to yourself. I think that's So give it to yourself. Yeah. Yeah. I can think about that. And it is so important to do that. Especially when you're not getting it from others too. 

Right, right. Which brings me to acts of service. Like when I was first thinking about acts of service, how do you give that to yourself? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, it's like I just, I just have people come over and do chores for me. <laugh> because it's like, or do I just do more chores for myself? <laugh>. Right. No. Like I don't know if that's gonna really land as feeling like acts of service cuz it's supposed to be taking things off my plate. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> not doing more chores for myself. Cause I was like, that's, that's not gonna feel good. Um, but I, I think in, in thinking about it and talking about it with other people, it's, so it's sometimes like having your groceries delivered, right? 

Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, like that's a, a act of service for myself. Like, it's not somebody in my family doing it for me, <laugh>. Right. But somebody's doing it for me. Right. So things that can be, um, taken off my plate that I can kind of in like activate or invite into my life for myself. Like I don't know that anyone else is in, in my household is gonna feel as, uh, taken care of or as loved by the, uh, grocery delivery as I will <laugh>. But that, yeah. That's like a way to give that active service to myself mm-hmm. 

<affirmative>. Yeah. Or or getting somebody to clean your house. Yes. Right. Yes. You know, even if it's like once every two months, it's just that gift of like, whoa, I didn't have to do it. Uhhuh <affirmative> and it's so nice. Yeah. So, you know, whatever works for you. But yeah, I think that's great. Yeah. I think those always can give yourself 

What you can give yourself. Like even things like, um, going to get a pedicure mm-hmm. <affirmative> or that could be quality time with yourself, but that could also be an active service. Cuz I could do that for myself, but it's an active service to get it for myself. <laugh> too. 

Right. Right. 

So, because 

I can't even reach my toes nowadays <laugh> 

Or see them really. I can't 


But yeah. Those are I think all ways in which, and once I've decided to view that as a way of loving myself, it's like I've embraced the concept of like, acts of service don't necessarily have to just come from relationships within my family or friendships. Like I can bring them in myself and, and I realize how actually happy I feel when those things happen <laugh>. Right. Because it, it really does land as my love language. 

I'm like, oh, yay. Even though I am, I'm hiring somebody or getting a service outside. Yeah. Yeah. From outside. Yeah. 

Yeah. What do you think happens when we don't get our love language? 

Well, I just guess we would feel pretty sad, right? Not loved, um mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And I mean, maybe part of what we're talking about with the self-love is having to figure out, okay, how do I get like, first of all, what's happening here? Why am I not feeling loved cared for in my relationships? How do I ask for those needs to be met more directly? Because also, like we were talking about earlier, not everybody understands the concepts of love language or has been introduced to that. And so sometimes we have to share mm-hmm. <affirmative> talk about it. But I do think if it's probably a pattern of feeling like that's never met in your relationships, it might not be very fulfilling relationships. 

<laugh>. Yeah. Yeah. Right. And I, and I even think of it as like with kids, right? Like, if they're not a, we're not giving them the love language, similar to what happened with me with my daughter, you know, I wonder if there's more like outbursts or behavior issues or you know, things because they know they, they're just not getting what they need to feel loved. 

Sure. Or yet that example with your daughter where she's just suddenly like, so sad, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative> after a full day together and you're, you're wondering what just happened. Like you tried so hard <laugh>, but you weren't so hard, you know, thinking about it in the, the lens of her love language is touch mm-hmm. <affirmative> and, and now you're meeting that need. But, and I think, you know, most parents genuinely want to have their children feel loved by them <laugh>. But yeah, even having these conversations is a good place to start about what makes you feel loved. 


And, and that, and that does bring me to like, how do people learn their love language? Right. Maybe we can talk a little bit about how to learn what yours is and maybe how to figure out, because kids I think could be tricky, right? Some kids it's not as easy to figure out either. So Yeah. Can we talk about 

That like a very concrete way as there's, you know, some quizzes online. Right. And that and the um, love site I think has a quiz for kids. 


Cool. Yeah. And, and a quiz for adults. So the, I think it's mostly just the languaging is a little bit different about, you know, how we're asking the questions. I mean, sometimes when you just go through the five love languages, people can instantly know mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Yeah. Right? They're just, oh yeah, I'm clearly this, this and this and you know, this one doesn't matter to me much at all. But sometimes, especially when, you know, with younger people, they might have to have more explanation behind each and then asking questions. 

The way, you know, the quizzes ask is, is sort of two choices, this or this, do you like this or this? Do you like, you know, and then, you know, kind of fleshes out then what is their top love language? 

Right? Like, do you wanna go to the park with mom? Which would be more of a quality time I would think. Or buy a pair of new shoes Right. Or something like that. Right. You know, that would be more of a gift and they can choose between that. Yeah. I think that's one way to figure it out with the kids. Um, and I also think looking at once again, because we tend to give what we want, you know, so a kid that's always like clinging and hugging and touching and like leaning against you Yeah. You might start to think that touch is theirs. Right. Right. 

Right. A kid that wants to have a little, you know, keep wanting to just have that one-on-one time with one of their parents or something like that, you might start to think quality time. Right. So Right. Also it depends on what they're trying, what they're giving as well. 

Yeah. And that's why I'm suspicious cuz we did, I did the quiz with my son like, uh, the online quiz a few months ago, maybe, uh, maybe a year ago. And he didn't put touch very high. I mean he, he would, he would always choose the one that, the other one that other than a hug or this, but I noticed in practice he actually is leaning in and wanting to be close and, and so I I think in my intuition about what his love language is based on how he is towards others is maybe informing me that that touch is probably higher on his list than he realizes. 

But I think often people can identify their top one pretty quickly. Right. For sure. It's the rest of 'em that's like, where does it fall? Right. And right And, and I think, like we said, it can probably shift at different, you know, times in life or ages and stages of life. Yeah. 

Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So do you think there's anything else like our listeners should know about love languages? 

Well, I've realized we, when we were talking about the love languages, this is kind of funny cuz did we about self-love, we didn't ever talk about physical touch <laugh>. 

Uh, you know why? Like 

We just were like, what 

<laugh>, because that's like Yeah. Next to gifts for me. Yeah. Like hello Yes. 

<laugh>. Right. This is what happens, right? Is that when it's not on our hi high on our list, we're like, okay, we covered the, we covered the main ones. <laugh> we're like, okay. But I was thinking about like, if physical touch was high on your list for your love language, how would you give that to yourself? That's a 


One. Yeah. Massage or something. Massage. Getting a massage. I suppose maybe that would be like, also like my pedicure of touch was I'm doing it as active service to self, but someone else might experience it as touch, you know, that type of thing. And also hugging mm-hmm. <affirmative>, right? Not right. 


Initiating, uh, initiating, hugging to, you know, with or contact could be a way to get that need met too. 

So funny. Yeah. Cuz that is lower on my list, but high on a lot of people in my family. Right. So interesting. 

Yeah. Right. So when, if so if they wanted to give that to themselves, you know, I think it'd be a good question to ask them how would they imagine doing that? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, because I had, because mine was act is acts of service. It did take me a few minutes to figure out how do you do that for yourself, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Um, but touch would be interesting to see what they think that would look like. 

I don't, I don't know either, but that's a good question. I I I will ask my kids cuz I do cuz they both, that is their love language. It's up there. So, uh, I'll ask 

Them. Alright. And it's sort of this concept with love languages is yes, we wanna get our needs met by others in that we're in relationship with and we wanna meet their needs, but we also wanna be able to take care of ourselves mm-hmm. 


Right. And, and assess our needs and be able to, to meet them too. And that's like a life skill. 

And, and I think it's such a great thing to be teaching our kids how to give themselves their own love language. Right. Because if they're not getting it right from whatever situation they're in and they're feeling they can maybe notice that a little bit and say, wow, but I can do these things to fill my bucket. 

Right. Which feels really important. And not creating dependency in relationships. Yeah. Like, I need this from you or I'm not gonna be okay. Right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative> like, I'd like this from you and if if I'm not getting it, I can also meet that need myself. Yeah. In other ways. Yeah. 

So there was a quote that Dr. Chapman, who actually developed these love languages had said, and it, he said, the question is not do we love our kids, but do they feel love? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And I just, I just love that that sticks with me because of course we love them. Right. <laugh> Right, of course. Like we do. I mean that's, you know, evident, but maybe they're not always feeling the love that we're giving, so mm-hmm. <affirmative>, I, I, I think that's why this topic is so important and why we need kind of look at it as a whole to make sure that we are meeting, especially our kids, but also our spouses. 

Right. Needs and, and our own. And 

Our own and our own. It's actually a lot. 

I know right? It's five love languages is a breeze. 

Just do them <laugh>. But I, it's like, it takes a lot to kind of have awareness of what you need, what others need, how to, how to weave that into our day-to-day interactions. Get our own needs met. Yeah. To satisfy. Yeah. 

It takes practice. Mm-hmm. It takes practice. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and especially if it's somebody in your family that needs something that maybe is lower on your list, that you almost have to practice learning how to give it to them. Yeah. So that it becomes more natural, you 

Know. Right. Becomes part of your rhythm or how you interact with them. I'm still, it's like a work in progress. Right. Like, especially because words of affirmation is lower for me. Right. And my family likes that <laugh>, so I'm like, just remember to acknowledge lots of things, you know, and then get in the habit of that. Yeah. 

Yeah. And so what, and someone told me this one cuz words of affirmation is important for my husband. And for some reason it almost felt like I was, um, I don't know the word, but like, almost like just saying things just to say them, you know, Uhhuh, <affirmative>. Um, that it wasn't really feeling like I meant them, but I knew it was important, you know? And, and someone said to me, and it may have been you <laugh> actually <laugh>, I'm now thinking of it. But you know, it's like you just have to practice it. Like, you know, say thank you for taking out of the garb, taking out the garbage and be specific or God, that was so helpful that you actually organized the closet or you know, that you picked up the kids or whatever it was that they did. 

And initially, initially I think I felt like why am I thanking him for things that technically he should be doing anyway? Right. Because that's how I perceive the words of affirmation. 


<affirmative>. But as I did it and, and kind of pushed myself to do it, it then becomes more natural. Right. And, and more meaningful. And then all of a sudden you're saying things like I almost had to oil the wheel a little bit mm-hmm. <affirmative> mm-hmm <affirmative> so that I could provide that for my husband and also make it feel better coming from me. So Yeah. Right. 

Like more genuine. Exactly. Like you really mean it instead of, I'm just saying this because I am trying to practice your love language on <laugh>. 

Yeah, exactly. So if it doesn't come natural to you, but it's somebody in your family or someone that you need to use this love language, then it's okay to go in there a little bit at a time and work at it yourself. It will get better, it'll get easier and it'll become more natural. 

And with ourselves too. 

And with ourselves too. Good point, Malia. Good point. 

Well I feel loved 

<laugh>. I do, I was gonna say, well I mean I love talking to you in general. You always just fill my bucket, my quality time. And so, you know, this conversation has been so much more than just love languages for me. It's also given me just, I'm filled, I'm filled for the day. So thank you 

<laugh>. Well thank you for those words of affirmation. I appreciate it, <laugh>. I, I hope to come, uh, join you again. Yeah, 

Always welcome. Always welcome 

<laugh>. Thanks for having me. 


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