Tag Archive: words of affirmation

brett fish and tbV

one story tbV [the beautiful Val] enjoys telling is how after a month of us dating she had a bedside drawer full of chocolate…

why is this significant? well, i spent a lot of time giving tbV chocolate as a way of showing i loved her, but she is not a big fan of chocolate, preferring sour sweets instead and so basically i invested a month or so in making Val’s housemate very happy.

i am a big chocolate fan [no, Americaland, Hershey’s is NOT chocolate, altho peanut butter cups do qualify] and so what better way to show someone love than giving them something that makes me feel good when i receive it? the moment i realised that she preferred sour sweets and savoury as a general trend, i was able to much better show her my Love and have her receive it as well.

Gary Chapman wrote a really helpful book called ‘The Five Love Languages’ in which he explains that people give and receive Love predominantly in five different ways:

[1] Words of Affirmation – “You look hot!”

[2] Acts of Service – “I fixed your heater, so now your room will be more hot.”

[3] Receiving Gifts – “Here is a plate of chili nachos. It may be a little hot.”

[4] Quality Time – “It’s hot today. Let’s go hang out on the beach together.”

[5] Physical Touch – “Rrarr, let’s get you hot.”

…or something like that!

The key to the book is realising that your primary act of receiving Love might be different to that of your person and so you giving them Love in a way you like to receive it [giving gifts] might not be received with the same extent of excitement or appreciation if your person’s primary way of receiving Love is different [eg. quality time]

In fact, it could even almost produce the opposite effect. If your wife is wanting to spend time with you [as a way of receiving Love well] and you spend all your time working extra time at your job [because you are saving up money to buy her something expensive because you value gifts] then despite your act being one of focused Love-giving, your wife might end up feeling not loved at all, because her need is not being met.

It can be as easy as a conversation – sit with your person and the list above and try and identify your top two Love languages that you receive Love in, and then try and figure out the Love languages that you show Love with [they may be the same] and then help your person identify theirs.

Basically we are answering the question, “What is important to the person i Love?” and then choosing to live in such a way that when you are wanting to show them Love, you choose a way that really connects with them and demonstrates the feeling and the choice you have.

This is really just a helpful guide more than a scientific art – you will probably find that you give and receive Love in a variety of ways, but hopefully you will easily be able to identify the one or two that make you feel well and truly Loved. And armed with this information in terms of your spouse, can make showing them Love so much easier and more significant.


It goes deeper than that when you are married as well. There may be a household task [like washing the dishes] that has neutral feeling for you, but your wife HATES doing it. How easy for you to jump in every time and do that task and free her up from doing something she doesn’t enjoy. Chances are there is something [dusting] you’re not a big fan of and she will reciprocate, altho that should not be your intention for doing it. It is a great act of Love to remove something your person hates.

Similarly, you might have some bad habits [leaving the toilet seat up… i don’t!] that are not the biggest deal for you, but might be a huge deal for your person. Identify those [there is no harm in asking regularly – this could be a simple tweak in your life that could help convey a huge amount of Love] and change them.

This is worth taking some time on – trying to figure out some stuff for yourself and also inviting your spouse to share the ways they receive Love well and to perhaps point out some stuff around the house or it could be the fact that you are always late for things that drives her mad or that you arrive home from work and hang out with the tv before you hang out with her or a number of other things… figure them out and Love her better!

[to return to the start of this series, click here]

in a nutshell if you refer to your woman (whether it be girlfriend or fiance or wife) as a ‘ball and chain’ or any similiar type negative reference you are probably in need of an attitude shift… or maybe a slap to the head (and i am more than happy to assist with either!)

as tbVal pointed out to me today it is often the very people who should be campaigning for the opposite who are the ones guilty of this – a pastor at a wedding ceremony, the best men (so good mates of the groom), the husband – and it is always ‘done in jest’ and light-hearted and just a joke… BUT i strongly believe that it can (and maybe always) have a negative effect on the relationship in various ways.

as they say ‘many a true word is spoken in jest’ which i don’t necessarily agree with in entirety altho i just realised they said ‘many’ and not all and so i guess i actually do… but as my buddy MJ coined it today, ‘many a true word is spoken undressed’ and that gives to me a clearer picture actually in one sense of what is really happening… cos often the jest/humour/barbed comment/negative stereotype is a metaphorical undressing or revealing of what really lies beneath.

and so referring to your wife as the ball and chain “ha ha ha” actually (if we could peer for a moment honestly into your heart) can display a hint of resentment or bitterness linked to stuff you had to give up when you got married or the way your time is no longer completely your own but now has to include the plans, dreams, priorities and movements of another… and so instead of changing your heart and dealing with the negativity you are feeling, you feed it by subtle innuendo and ‘innocent’ comment.

i was at a pastor’s breakfast today where the one pastor’s wife had come for the first time and when they said who she was wife to, someone loudly commented ‘ag shame’ or something to that effect. more negativity

quite possibly a curse.

i love my wife. and i want the world to know that. and more importantly i want my wife to know that. and so i tell her. a lot. i tell her when we are alone. and i tell her publically because it is something i want people to know and see and hopefully learn from.

why would i ever want to make a negative comment – even as a joke – towards her – that she may even in the slightest most smallest part in the back of her heart wonder if there is any truth to? why, for the measly pittance of a small (nervous? cos is that my real feeling, as the listener towards my wife?) laugh, would i risk selling out my immense love.

and people will throw ‘but you’re in the honeymoon period’ at us and i may need to administer a different slapping for that cos altho it is still early days in our marriage, this is an intentional, well thort out, muchly observed, taken on phenomenon of truth. in ten years time i will hold to the same stuff and hopefully still be accused of being in the honeymoon period (forget that, we’re in the marriage period and it IS till death do us part) because of how i treat Val, and how i speak to Val, and how i speak of Val and how i look at Val.

and so i want to encourage you and i want to exhort you and i want to stand up on top of a nearby mountain and SCREAM AT THE TOP OF MY LUNGS AT YOU… choose to bless and not to curse! Both publically and privately speak positively to and about your wife (fiance, girlfriend) – building her up, building up your marriage, giving a positive vibe to those who are not married that this marriage thing is an incredible thing (not always easy, sometimes really hard, sometimes very easy – a lot a lot – and sometimes a lot of work and other times so incredibly amazingly amazing) worth pursuing when the right person has been found.

do not allow the enemy even a foothold…

and i really believe that dissing each other publically, making negative to-marriage-or-to-each-other jokes and other stuff can speak curses, which, like seeds, are planted into your relationship, and altho there may be a long long time of not seeing any effect to them, will at some stage become rooted, and grow and eventually emerge, and by then it may be too late, or immensely difficult to restore what you have lost.

“what you water, you will grow” [chris the boss]

speak blessing, love, speak life, love, uplift, love, encourage, love, build up, love, add beauty, love, raise self-esteem/self-belief/ self-worth…LOVE!

for the next part of ‘How to Love your wife better’ – Halting the movement of the sun – click here.

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