Whether for a husband or boyfriend, affirmation in the form of words is vital to a relationship. This listof ideas will help you start speaking the Love Language Words of Affirmation for him.
Thank you so much to Katelyn for the invitation to guest post. I read her blog a lot so it is such an honor to be a part of it today!
My guest post today relates to several books by Gary Chapman about his book “The Five Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts.
I’m sharing a series that I call Love Languages Ideas for the Family on my blog Lalymom, and on the blogs of some friends to help spread the word about the Love Languages and to help put them into action.
These posts are NOT meant to be used in place of reading the book. There is a lot of understanding that goes into finding your husband’s love languages and nothing can replace the knowledge the Mr. Chapman shares in the books.
The Five Love Languages
First, let’s back up in case you aren’t super familiar with The Five Love Languages books or it’s been a while.
In Chapman’s The Five Love Languages Book, there are five main (though often overlapping) love languages that people speak in, whether they know it or not.
These five love languages are:
- Words of Affirmation
- Quality Time
- Receiving Gifts
- Acts of Service
- Physical Touch
If you want to take an online quiz to help you figure out which one or ones most characterize how you (or your spouse) feel and express love, take the online love languages quiz here.
The reason this book is so well known and so popular is because knowing how someone feels and gives loves is super helpful in a relationship! It helps you make sure you are giving love in a way that is actually meaningful to him and receiving it in a way actually meaningful to you.
It can be seriously life-changing guys!
If you know how your husband feels most love, you can make sure you are filling up his love tank, which often helps him go out and conquer the world! Once he knows your love language and fills up your love tank, you are calmer, less stressed, and give more love to others.
It’s such a wonderful thing. ❤
Once you know your significant other’s love languages, it helps to have a go-to list of ideas for how to speak the love language that best speaks to him, especially if you are not accustomed to speaking it! Because often what love language your partner speaks and you speak are not the same!
What are Words of Affirmation?
I’m not going to discuss all of the different love languages today so be sure to get the book (it’s an easy, short, and inexpensive read!) but want to talk about the first love language mentioned in the book: Words of Affirmation.
As it says in his book about what are words of affirmation (paraphrasing):
Verbal compliments, or words of appreciation, are powerful communicators of love. They are best expressed in simple, straightforward statements of affirmation such as “You look sharp in that suit” and “I really appreciate your washing the dishes tonight.”
Another dialect of Words of Affirmation are words of encouragement. Encourage means “to inspire courage.”
Words of Affirmation is communicating love verbally and to do so we must use kind words, as love makes requests, not demands.
It’s very helpful that when we give him praise with our words of affirmation that we do so honestly and sincerely, instead of with sarcasm, innuendo, or bitterness.
For example, you shouldn’t say “About time you took that garbage out. I don’t think it could have held anymore. The flies were going to carry it out for you soon enough.”
Verbal compliments are far greater motivators than nagging words.
Words of Affirmation is an easy one for me though because I knew right away it was one of my primary love languages as well. You can see it in virtually every interaction I have in a given day.
I’m a thanker.
Like, a super thanker.
I thank the guy that filled my water up 15 times at the restaurant, I thank the lady who held the door, I thank my husband every time he makes dinner- or even just orders dinner!
It may also be that I value Acts of Service but I know that I always appreciate being appreciated.
I love hearing when someone likes my ideas. When my kids tell me they love me, thank me for something or pay me a compliment, my heart just about explodes.
I’m not saying that saying thank you is all you need to do if Words of Affirmation is your spouse’s love language, I’m just demonstrating one way you might start applying it in your life if it is.
Keep reading if you know, for sure, that your husband or boyfriend’s love language is Words of Affirmation.
15 Ideas for You to Give Words of Affirmation to Your Husband or Boyfriend
If words of affirmation to him are super important, then there are many EASY things you can do to make him feel loved and amazing.
I have a whole list of 15 ideas below, but first I just want to put in a few good reminders.
Be sure to give indirect words of affirmation to him without him actually being present! Try saying positive things about your spouse when he isn’t there but you are talking to someone about him.
And when people are around? Be doubly sure to affirm your husband in front of them, and be share to share credit with your spouse if receiving an award or honor publically.
Another great thing people who feel love through words, is to write those words down so they can read that compliment again and again!
Printable Words of Affirmation Ideas for Him
Here is a list for you of ways to start speaking the Love Language of Words of Affirmation for him.
Download a shorthand printable version of this list to keep handy when you need ideas!
There are many ways to praise, encourage, and give compliments to him. Chapman recommended that when you hear a lecture on love or you overhear a friend saying something positive about another person, write it down in a list of words of affirmation for future reference (I love using a Google Docs for things like this).
If you have more ideas PLEASE share them in the comments! We’d love to hear them but you will also be helping others out with ideas too!
1. Words of Affirmation Post-it Notes
Pick up a pack of post-it notes at the store and every day (or just every so often) before your husband leaves, write a little note and stick it in his wallet.
It could be anything from a reason you love him, to something he did that made you smile or just a heart and a smiley face to give words of affirmation to him.
Or, if you aren’t super creative, pick up these pre-printed pack of love note post-it notes!
2. Email or Text Him Words of Affirmation
Most of our electronic communication with our partners focus on practical, utilitarian information.
“Will you pick up some milk on the way home?” or “Jackie invited us to dinner on Sunday.”
You have these tools at your fingertips so you might as well put them to good use to speak your partner’s love language too!
Once in a while send him a text or email for no other reason to say you love him or tell him how much you are looking forward to a weekend together.
3. Affectionate Words or Nicknames
When you sign off a private communication with your significant other, use affectionate language.
If you’ve ever watched Seinfeld you might remember the Schmoopie episode? It might have been funny and overdone in the show, but affection has its place, especially with someone who appreciates words of affirmation.
If you are not quite ready to create a brand new cuddly nickname for him, maybe just start by signing off with something simple like “XO” or “Hugs!”
4. Lunchtime Affirmation Notes
This is pretty similar to the post-it notes in the wallet obviously, but if he has a stressful job, what a nice surprise it would be in the middle of the day to get a lift from your affirming words for him.
All it would take is a simple note in his lunch to let him know you are thinking of him and appreciate his hard work!
5. 1 Second a Day Video
I first learned of the 1 Second a Day App (affiliate link) in a movie called Chef.
In the movie, the son of the main character records one second of video every day of a trip that he takes with his dad. In the end, he uses the 1 Second a Day app to stitch them together into an incredibly sweet and memorable video.
I think this would be awesome to do either using one second of video of you and your husband (or boyfriend) together or maybe every day you say one word to the camera that reminds you of him that day. Maybe you even say a reason you love him every day.
Could you imagine how happy this would make your words of affirmation loving spouse?!
Along those same lines would be to make photo books from your experiences together.
Shutterfly and other online services make this easy. You could either sit down and do it all at once or try to upload a few pictures each month and then print it when the book is full.
You can make it even simpler by having Chatbooks do most of the work organizing of it for you and to add simple captions to the photos.
If you want to use good old fashioned handwriting, why not start a gratitude journal?
Whether you write one sentence a day or pages of memories at a time, seeing your feelings in writing would be really special for someone who appreciates words of affirmation.
8. Mail a Letter
Woah. Stop the presses! Did you read that?!
MAIL. A. LETTER.
You’ll need a stamp, envelope, paper and pen but I think you can manage.
Don’t we all feel a little special when we receive non-junk mail especially from someone we love? Mail the letter to him at work or at home. It will be a great surprise and would really make his day!
If you need tips on writing the perfect love letter, The Dating Divas have a great Love Letter of the Month club which gives prompts and tips on how to do it.
9. Love Affirmation List
Write or type out a list of your partner’s best qualities or of the top 20 best memories you have of him.
You could give it to him wrapped up, folded for his wallet, you could frame it, you could laminate it and hang in the door of the medicine cabinet.
Whatever you think would be a great way for him to be able to see an affirmation that he is loved.
10. Message on Mirror
You probably remember this one from your childhood – writing on a foggy mirror.
Whether it’s drawing a heart with your initials or writing something you love about him, it is the thought that counts and he will know you’re thinking of him!
11. Affirmation Appointment
Make a point to tell him one reason you love him at the same time every day.
You don’t have to tell him you’re going to do it, just try to remember when you have a quiet moment, whether it’s the moment you wake up, during dinner or before bed.
You could tell him a trait of his that first attracted your attention, something he did recently that you really appreciated, or just a simple “I love you.”
12. Everyday Acknowledgement
Acknowledge as many acts of service as possible with gratitude.
Like I mentioned above, I like to show others that I care in my own love language by thanking them. I also really try hard to acknowledge creativity, a job well done or good ideas.
If you see your husband or boyfriend has come up with a genius solution to a household problem, or does something well at work or in a hobby, acknowledge that. A genuine “Thank you,” “Good job” or “Wow, nice work” can really be validating for someone with the affirmation love language.
13. High Praise
Do you ever talk with friends and family about the things you love and appreciate about your spouse?
I know it can be easy to fall into the habit of venting about your differences but give some thought to ways you can spread the good words about your spouse.
My husband occasionally tells me that he told his friend about something cool that I did and what his response was to hearing it. It makes me feel great to know he appreciates me so much that he tells his friends.
Words of affirmation don’t always have to happen after the fact.
If your husband has a big deadline coming up at work, listen to him when he talks about it and tell him you know he will do a good job.
If he is worried about something, listen and talk through the issue and encourage him as he deals with it. Tell him to have fun when he heads out to do something fun.
15. Affirmation Birthday Messages
Every year for his birthday send an email, call or message friends and family reminding everyone of the big day.
Ask them to leave messages on the home answering machine, send an email or other birthday wishes. You might even want to add a special request that they tell him something they like about him.
And be sure that you do your best to make his birthday extra special. I love this special birthday gifts for him pack from The Dating Divas!
What other ways would you speak the Love Language Words of Affirmation to your husband? Let’s hear it in the comments!
Laura is mom to two sweet redheads who fuel all the fun over at Lalymom.com. She shares cool kids crafts, fun activities, free printables and parenting tips too! You can follow her by email, on Facebook, Pinterest or Twitter. For more Love Languages ideas and printables head over to Lalymom.com!
Andrew Budek-Schmeisser says
This is a great list, and I hope you get a lot of traffic.This is SO important.
None of it happens in my marriage, but that’s cool, because 1) I’m dying anyway, and 2) my background as, essentially, a legal hired gun does not engender warm, cuddly, and romantic thoughts.
As I write this, I am at the end of a truly terrifying day of illness; I am afraid to go to sleep. I may not wake up.
And when I said goodnight to my wife, I also said, “Well, if I’m not here tomorrow, it’s been fun. I’d do it again.” And a fist-bump. Hardly the stuff to gets hearts a-flutter, but it was the best affirmation I could have had.
God made me as I am; to be stored in a box marked “open only in case of war”. I’m no good for anything else.
And my wife accepts that, and loves me anyway.
Are you really going to die from illness? I’m sorry to hear this if it’s true. God Bless you.
God loves you too ! Remember the song , “All to Jesus , I Surrender all” your in my thoughts and prayers.
Andrew Budek-Schmeisser says
Forgot to say…here from Messy Marriage. Sorry.
My husband and I share a saying that popped into my head one day, not long after we met. It’s how I knew he’s my perfect match. I told it to him and he immediately understood the severity of what it means. Since we, both, made it very plain ,when we first met, how much of a hard time we have trusting people. So every so often one of us will look at the other and just say “side by side or back to back”. It’s sort of our little code to convey a multitude of feelings for one another. Without being all mushy and gross.
Katelyn Fagan says
Cute!! What a great phrase!
There is no better investment that putting time and attention in your marriage. I love the love languages book too. It really does help make sure you are working in the right area. I love all your great tips for giving affirmation. My husband doesn’t always feel affirmation enough so I am trying to look for new ways to show him.