Love Languages

A couple looking at one another and smiling, expressing words of affirmation to show their love.
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Your Guide To Love Languages: Words Of Affirmation

It’s all about acknowledgment and appreciation.

Feeling loved is a crucial part of keeping your connection strong when you’re in a relationship. But showing appreciation and care toward your partner looks different for every couple. Even between you and your partner, you may each have different ways that you prefer to give and receive feelings of love. If you or your partner’s love language is words of affirmation, knowing what to say and how to say it can go a long way toward keeping your spark alive.

The 5 love languages

The concept of love languages comes from marriage counselor Dr. Gary Chapman, author of the best-selling book, The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts. The book outlines five ways that romantic partners best experience and express love through quality time, words of affirmation, acts of service, gifts, and physical touch.

Initially intended as a way to help couples strengthen their relationship and stay in love through all that life throws their way, the concept has evolved greatly since the book was first published in 1992 with spin-off books, apps, and conferences devoted to exploration of each of the five love languages. It’s now widely-recognized as not only a way for romantic partners learn about one another, but also to help bolster family relationships, workplace interactions, and friendships.

Here’s a closer look at what each of the five love languages and what they mean:

Quality time: One-on-one time spent together with uninterrupted, focused attention.

Words of affirmation: Spoken or written phrases that show support, appreciation, encouragement.

Acts of service: Actions that make a person’s life easier are deeply appreciated or used to show care.

Gifts: The giving and receiving of meaningful or desired objects to show love and appreciation.

Physical touch: Love is expressed or felt through non-verbal means using touch and body language to show affection.

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Love language: words of affirmation

The use of words of affirmation is simply a way to acknowledge appreciation for your significant other or even applaud effort on your partner’s part. Think about the way it might make you feel to hear someone say “thank you” when you’ve done something nice for them. It feels good, right? For people who identify with words of affirmation as their primary love language, nothing says “I love you” quite like an affirming comment. It’s an automatic confidence boost. Whether written or spoken, words of affirmation are meaningful gestures that make the recipient feel loved and supported.

If words of affirmation is your partner’s love language, having a list of things to say that will help show your love and appreciation for them can go a long way toward strengthening your relationship. On the flip side, if this is your love language, you can suggest that your partner share affirming phrases with you or regularly verbalize their gratitude for you and the things you do. You can say things like, “I love when you tell me what I mean to you,” or “Hearing how much you appreciate me makes me feel so good,” to encourage them to actively use more words of affirmation.

Not sure which love language you or your partner identifies with most? Take a free quiz on the official 5 Love Languages website to find out. If one or both of you could use some ideas for words of affirmation to share, read on for ideas.

Words of affirmation to tell your partner

  1. Thank you for...
  2. You make my life better.
  3. When you helped me with [task], I felt so loved.
  4. I appreciate when you...
  5. I believe in you.
  6. I’m so happy to have you in my life.
  7. You make me feel so loved.
  8. I’m sorry for...
  9. I am so thankful for you.
  10. You take such good care of me.
  11. It makes me so happy to be with you.
  12. I love that you understand me.
  13. You’re my favorite person to spend time with.
  14. I love the way you make me feel.
  15. You are so much fun to be with.
  16. I need you.
  17. You’re the best partner.
  18. You’re an amazing parent.
  19. I’m proud of you.
  20. You’re my best friend.
  21. Thank you for being there for me.
  22. I appreciate that you are always here for me.
  23. I know I can always count on you.
  24. Your support is so appreciated.
  25. It made me so happy when you…
  26. I believe in you.
  27. You inspire me.
  28. I love that you get me.
  29. Thank you for loving me.
  30. I love how genuine you are.
  31. My life has more meaning because you’re in it.
  32. You handled that situation so well.
  33. Can I ask you for advice? I value your input so much.
  34. You’re so amazing.
  35. I love our life together.
  36. Thank you for listening to me.
  37. You’re so special to me.
  38. I miss you.
  39. Your support means so much to me.
  40. I trust you.
  41. Being with you makes me feel incredible.
  42. I love your optimism.
  43. I value your opinions.
  44. Your outlook is inspiring.
  45. The way you see the world is beautiful.
  46. You always work so hard.
  47. You’ve done a great job.
  48. Thank you for making time for us.
  49. You make everything better just by being you.
  50. I love that you did this for me.
  51. I see that you’re hurting. How can I help you?
  52. You inspire me.
  53. You’re a dream come true.
  54. I trust your judgement.
  55. Our family is so lucky to have you.
  56. You’ve got this!
  57. I don’t know what I’d do without you.
  58. You make me feel safe.
  59. I will always be here for you.
  60. I respect you so much.
  61. I have total confidence in you and your ideas.
  62. You always make everything better.

When words fail, the ultimate affirming statement for someone who identifies with words of affirmation as their love language is to simply say, “I love you.”