Everyone experiences love differently. Biology, upbringing, personality and experiences all influence the way an individual likes and needs to be loved.

Being different in this way isn’t a problem. In fact, it’s one of the things that make relationships a rich and wonderful experience.

Different Wavelenghts

What is a potential problem is that both you and your spouse (or fiance, date, friends etc) will instinctively give love in the way that you most like to receive it.

So if affirmation and verbal expressions of devotion are important to you, you’ll tend to express love this way. This happens instinctively and is irrespective of whether that is important to the other. Similarly, your spouse will tend to express love in ways that he/she best encounters love.

Sometimes, there is a strong overlap in your ‘Unique Love Profiles‘ (that is, the pattern of Love Needs that is unique to you). However, most couples find that there are also significant differences.

And it’s in these differences where the potential for disappointment and heartache lies. You both may be trying really hard to express love to each other, but just not delivering it in a way that speaks “LOVE” loud and clear to your spouse.

Speaking Their Love Language

To be effective in your efforts to love, you will need to learn how your spouse wants and needs to be loved; to love by intention rather than by instinct. You will need to study your spouse, observing how he/she responds to gestures of love, to build a picture of what communicates love most effectively.

When you understand what is important to your husband or wife, then you can choose to give love to your spouse in exactly the way he or she best experiences it.

This is SmartLoving: giving of yourself to your spouse in the way he or she most likes and needs to be loved.

SmartLoving is genuine loving because it’s other-centred. It’s focused on loving your spouse on their terms rather than your own.

It is also smart because it’s effective. It helps you to target your efforts to love towards what will truly communicate love. After all, who can afford to waste precious time or energy loving in a way that doesn’t hit the mark?


Originally published at SmartLoving. Photo by J Carter from Pexels.

Published On: March 12th, 20220 CommentsTags: , , , ,

About the Author: Byron and Francine Pirola

Married for 25 years, with 5 children, Byron & Francine Pirola are the founders and co-authors of the SmartLoving Series – marriage enrichment and marriage preparation courses designed to help build successful and resilient marriages. International speakers and authors of numerous articles on marriage, more than 3000 couples have attended their programs, workshops and conferences in Australia, New Zealand and Great Britain Byron & Francine are Executive Directors of the Marriage Resource Centre from which they run SmartLoving programs and produce digital resources. Francine graduated from Fordham University with a Masters in Religion and Religious Education. Byron is a founding partner of the strategic consulting firm, Port Jackson Partners Limited, and a Director of both listed and unlisted companies. He holds a PhD from the Commonwealth Centre for Gene Technology, Adelaide University.

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