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What's Your Love Language?

We are wired for connection. We were created for attachment and it is a NEED to love and be loved. We literally cannot survive without it. One of my favorite subjects around this topic is the idea by Dr. Gary Chapman, the 5 Love Languages, which are 1) Acts of Service, 2) Quality Time, 3) Physical Touch, 4) Words of Affirmation, and 5) Gifts. 

The interesting thing is that even though we all need love, we all feel it (and give it) differently, which can lead to a major disconnect in relationships. Ever wonder why you feel like you are serving your spouse all day long and they still seem to think you aren't showing them love? This answers that question! 

I learned about this concept many, many years ago and have found that this knowledge can benefit ANY relationship. Whether you are married, dating, or single, you can apply this concept to how you can show love to anyone around you, your parents, your siblings, your roommates/neighbors, your friends, your boy/girlfriend, your spouse, or your children in a way that will really touch them.

It may also help you to understand how you can look outside yourself and see how others around you may be showing you love and you aren't even recognizing it! 

Acts of Service

For people who's love language is service, actions speak louder than words. They feel especially loved when someone goes out of their way to DO something for them. It may be doing the dishes, making them a meal, cleaning the bathroom, or watching the kids so the other can have some alone time. It may be cleaning the car, fixing something that's broken, or taking something they didn't want to do off their plate. 

The key to acts of service is thinking outside the box and doing something that the other person would truly love to have done for them, without them having to ask. :) 

Quality Time

For people who's #1 love language is quality time, attention means everything. (PS this is mine. haha) They feel the most loved when someone schedules specific and focused time to spend with them. The key here is QUALITY. So sitting together watching netflix on the couch probably isn't going to do it for them. They need to feel heard, valued, and cherished. They need to know that you want to be with them, have nothing else you'd rather be doing, and are fully focused on them. Pulling your phone out to answer a text in the middle of a special dinner can completely unravel a quality time person.  

Does this mean you have to shower the person with focused attention every time you are around them? No, it just means that in order for them to feel your love you need to schedule this quality time into your busy schedules and be fully present and actively listening throughout. For the person whose love language is time, this will be a major payoff. :) I mean... isn't it about time?

Physical Touch

It should come as no surprise that physical touch is one of the five love languages, however some people need physical touch more than others. Disclaimer: this language is also felt by women and does not just pertain to sex. The key to physical touch is the emotional closeness that is felt behind the touch, and can actually be more deeply felt through the small ways of a kiss on the forehead, a pat on the back, or a rub on the shoulder. (obviously, the nature of the relationship would play a role in how you would show love this way)

Physical touch has a way of showing support, nurturing, protection, appreciation, inclusion, and affection. Sometimes we are afraid to reach out and break the bubble surrounding another person, but honestly, no matter what your love language is, we could all use a little more human contact and love.

Words of Affirmation

For the person who's love language is words of affirmation, communication is key! The phrase "actions speak louder than words" is not necessarily true when showing love to words of affirmation people. Go out of your way to not just show them appreciation and encouragement, but speak it. Compliment them often, tell them you love them, tell them why. 

The keys here are tone and genuineness. Make sure you speak compliments and words that you truly mean and that the sincerity comes through in your tone.  

Gifts

Last, but certainly not least, the 5th love language is gifts. And don't be ashamed if your primary love language is gifts, it's okay to like getting stuff, it doesn't mean you're greedy, it just means that this is how you feel the most loved. 

If there is someone in your life who's love language is gifts, show them you love them by giving them something thoughtful. The cost actually doesn't matter here, it is about being mindful and is the thought that counts the most. At the grocery store? Pick up their favorite treat. On a jog? Pick a flower (or a dandelion for that matter) and give it to them. It is showing that you were thinking about them and this shows love.

Now, for those more special occasions, you may want to give the relationship a special gift to really show your love. AND gifts don't always have to be material items, they can be the gift of self, of being truly present and giving time. The key to this one is paying attention to the little things and picking up on things that someone really loves and giving it to them.

So yeah, we are wired for connection. We need to receive love and we need to give it. Pay more attention to the people in your life and tune into the little cues to let you know how you can make them feel the love you have for them even more. So... not quite sure what your love language is? The link below will take you to a quiz to help you find out. Print out a copy and have your loved one take it as well. This information truly has the capacity to enhance any and every relationship. 

P.S. Have you been wondering how the pictures of watches pertain to love? haha Well, I have partnered with JORD watches to help you show someone some love through a gift of a watch or the gift of time. These watches are incredibly unique and are a perfect gift to show thoughtfulness and love. Every person that enters will receive a $25 gift code and one lucky winner will receive $100 towards any of JORD's beautiful watches. Click the button below to enter! 

Photography done by: Kelvin McKay Findlay photography 

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Show Yourself Some Love #1

Exploration

Preface: Okay, so with starting up this business, and starting a new job, and working on a master's program full-time, and trying to be a present daughter, sister, and friend, I have realized that I am getting burnt out! I mean, who needs sleep really, oh how I wish that were the case!

Today marks the start of the "Show Yourself Some Love" Monday Sessions.

So every Monday for the next who knows how long... whenever I run out of things to say about it, will be on a different facet of self-care. Self-care is SO important because we cannot pour from an empty cup. When we are running on empty we lose our creativity, we lose our ability to think clearly, and we lose our ability to love and serve others effectively. 

Self-care is not selfish.

It is the exact opposite. If you are dying, how effective are you in saving someone else? Not very. So I hope with these Monday self-care sessions we can take care of ourselves more, so we can, in turn, serve others more. It's time to show yourself a little more love!

I also want to use these as an opportunity to let you into my life a little more and document the things that light me up and bring me joy and recharging goodness. So... here you go!

How exploring and self-care makes me feel. :)

How exploring and self-care makes me feel. :)

Session 1: Exploration

When was the last time you went somewhere you had never gone? Like actually stepped OUTSIDE and went somewhere? 

According to NASA, and Google, humans explore because of an innate desire to learn about the world around them. The urge to explore was ingrained in the psyche so that human ancestors could find places that were abundant in food, water and other resources necessary for survival. Nowadays we have the ability to sit at our computer and pull up basically any place in the entire world and see it on our screens! While I admit, that is freaking AWESOME, and I have spent my fair share of time exploring things I wish I could see from the safety of my computer screen, there is NOTHING that beats the rush, joy, and recharging capacity as getting outside and seeing something new.

Exploration wakes up the brain.

It ignites creativity. It usually involves some time of exercise (which we will cover GREATLY in a later session) which benefits every single area of your life. It opens your eyes. It heightens gratitude. It makes you more social. It gives you more drive to continue the work.

Like I said, I have been working HARD. LOVING every second of life, but working HARD and I've been feeling it. The burn-out was coming. So this past weekend I got to go home, which for me is a little town in Northern Utah called Kaysville. One of my cousins was getting married and I was so happy to be able to go home, set the work aside, focus on my family, and think about other things. On Saturday after the wedding, I took my family on an adventure. 

Even though I spent my whole life growing up in Utah, I did not know that the Great Salt Lake was so big that it went all the way up to northern Utah. I also did not know, until recently, that there is an art installation IN the Great Salt Lake called the "spiral jetty." It is an earthwork sculpture constructed in April 1970 that is considered to be the central work of American sculptor Robert Smithson. It's been there for 47 years! Apparently, it was under water for about 20 years and just resurfaced in the past few years. So of course, I've been wanting to see it.

Art + Nature + Water + Middle of Nowhere =FREAKING AWESOME.

So... after the wedding, we decided to go. It was pouring. We decided to go anyways. I've told you that rain doesn't stop me from doing things I want to do. Plus - my car can survive anything. Anything. So we drove. and we drove. and we drove. we lost phone service. My mom was freaking out a little bit (the only one out of any of us that has lived during a time when they didn't have cell phones, go figure). We drove past cows and more cows, baby cows, and bulls. 

Spiral Jetty, Great Salt Lake, Utah

Spiral Jetty, Great Salt Lake, Utah

After what seemed like forever, we got there! The Spiral Jetty. It had stopped raining, which was great, but it was still pretty muddy. Didn't stop us. So hiked down to it, took a bunch of pictures, basked in the awesomeness of this Robert Smithson, who must be the most rad human ever to think to build this. The amazingness that it has lasted this long, and the fact that we can go and see it.

It was freezing, so we didn't stay too long, but the effects of this adventure were the same. I got to check something off my Utah bucket list. I got to spend time with my family. I got to drive on a bumpy road, leading who knows where, the rush of no cell phone service, following dinky little signs, and trusting that it was leading me to my destination. And at the end of it, I felt refreshed, rejuvenated, and alive. That's what it does.

It makes you feel alive.

So, in this endeavor of feeling lighter and brighter. In this endeavor to discover more fully your purpose. And on this endeavor to show yourself a little more love, get outside and explore. Even if it's just your own backyard. There are SO many things to see, learn, and do. Just get outside. 

Oh... and while solo adventures can be the best medicine sometimes, taking people you love with you while you explore, makes the self-love degree even greater.  

McKay Findlay, one of my favorite exploring buddies

McKay Findlay, one of my favorite exploring buddies

Utah Weekend = Success

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