I don’t normally read self-help books, but I was told by multiple people who The 5 Love Languages is a must-read. After getting through it, I can only concur.
Gary Chapman’s book doesn’t tell readers what to do to make their relationships work. It doesn’t provide a list of actions that will save a failing marriage, make your boyfriend or girlfriend stay with you forever, or teach you the ultimate truth behind how to find and keep love. What this book will do is just as important–it will teach you how to understand the ways in which you comprehend love and the ways in which your significant other recognizes that you love them.
The love languages that Chapman proposes represent the different categories of actions that people appreciate most. These include: Words of Affirmation, Quality Time, Gifts, Acts of Service, and Physical Touch. Though everyone is different, each person is sure to value actions that fit into one of these categories, specifically.
Now, Chapman has included two tests in the back of the book, one for men and one for women, to help readers determine which love languages they value most. I took this test and it was not accurate, so I don’t think that it is, overall, a very valuable tool. The way that the test is written makes you choose between a or b, and of course even if you don’t like either choice, you must choose one and a language you may not care about gets a point. This isn’t to say that the test isn’t accurate for other readers, though.
Some people may read the book to find out more about their love languages, or their partner’s, but I read it straight through without skipping over any chapters. Though all of the information may not be relevant to my relationship, I found that it was relevant to how I viewed all relationships in general, not just those that are romantic (which, ultimately, is why I decided to blog about it). Overall, Chapman has created a book that allows us to better understand people in general.
Human interaction is something that many readers and writers are interested in and crave to explore. Though this book may not have changed my relationship, it has changed how I view the ways in which I communicate with everyone around me. That being said, I would recommend it to any writer that is trying to develop a believable character, as the ways in which love is expressed is central to creating a character that people understand and want to learn more about. The 5 Love Languages is just as valuable as a writer’s resource as it is a self-help book about communication, and that being said I think that any person interested in the ways in which people communicate could benefit from its message.