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  • Writer's pictureBarbara Mayfield, MS, RDN, LD, FAND

How do we communicate love? Let me count the ways.

Updated: Dec 3, 2022

Two hands form a heart with sun shining through over the water

This Valentine’s Day people around the world will express their love to others. How will they do it? With words, yes; but also with cards, flowers, chocolate, jewelry, and more.

Did you know? Valentine’s Day originated in the 5th century and has been celebrated since the Middle Ages.

Today, it is the #1 holiday for floral purchases, the #2 holiday for sending cards, and one of the most popular days for people to “pop the question.” Billions of dollars are spent every year on Valentine's Day to say, “I love you.”

How do we communicate love? Let me count 2, 3, 4, 5 ways:

#2 — stands for the parts of speech we can use to communicate about love: Love is both a noun and a verb. As a noun, love is an intense feeling or interest: “The new mother was filled with love for her newborn.” As a verb, to love is to feel deep affection or to like something very much: “He loves playing the guitar and singing.”

#3 – emphasizes the importance of love: According to the “Love Chapter” in the Bible, 1 Corinthians 13: “And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.”

#4 – tells us how many types of love we experience:

Author C. S. Lewis, in his book The Four Loves, describes the types of love as…

Storge or Affection – the enjoyment of someone or something

Phileo or Friendship – the love of companionship and shared interests

Eros or Romance – passionate love for another, what is considered “being in love”

Agape or Charity – unselfish love based on the will not emotion

#5 – counts the ways we prefer to express and receive romantic love:

Author Dr. Gary Chapman, in his book, The Five Love Languages, describes these as:

Acts of Service – when emptying the dishwasher says “I love you”

Receiving Gifts – when a thoughtful gift expresses love best

Quality Time – when we put down the phone and give undivided attention

Words of Affirmation – when we appreciate others with encouraging words

Physical Touch – when we hug, hold hands, give a backrub, or intimate touch

Not only on Valentine's Day, but every day, people need to love and be loved. Experience it as a noun and a verb. Value it as what is most important when nothing else remains. Enjoy every type and express it in ways that communicate it best for you and those you love.

How do you communicate love? Say it, put it into practice, and wrap it with a bow.

“To be fully seen by somebody, then, and be loved anyhow – this is a human offering that can border on the miraculous.” ~ Elizabeth Gilbert

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