Why your love language is a catalyst for financial happiness in relationships
[Including the one with yourself]
I’m yet to meet a couple who say they never fight! Relationships tend to create friction and arguments. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Conflict is an opportunity to work together to find a resolution – and in the process, you learn more about yourself [and each other]. It’s a fact that when you’re moving through life with another person, you won’t agree on everything. You’re going to have different opinions and ideas about how to do things.
So it won’t come as a surprise to know that one of the most common topics for disagreement is money. Worse than that, money is often the reason that relationships break down – or end altogether.
We’re touching on the ultimate taboo!
Money is already a taboo topic, but in relationships, this ‘taboo-ness’ escalates even further!
Even if you’re deeply in love, money can still drive a wedge between you. Money can quickly become a source of distrust, judgement, and anger – especially if you have different beliefs and conflicting money stories.
For example, if your partner is a ‘spender’ and you’re a ‘saver’, the ease with which they spend money will wind you up! And if you live for today while your partner worries about future security, you’ll disagree over your financial priorities.
It’s the ‘non-essential’ purchases that can really ignite the friction! That’s because everyone has different ideas about what’s justified – and what’s a waste of money. For one person, that purchase symbolises love – for another, it’s money down the drain!
So how can you work through financial conflicts and come out the other side happier?
Love Languages can help. Let me show you how…
What are Love Languages?
The reality is we all give and receive love differently. Dr Gary Chapman categorised these differences into FIVE love languages.
- Words of affirmation
- Acts of service
- Quality time
- Physical touch
[You can discover your Love Language here – https://www.5lovelanguages.com/quizzes/]
Your Love Language is a gateway to understanding more about yourself and your partner. It’s also a hack for reducing financial friction in your relationship because it can help you spend money in a way that doesn’t create conflict.
1. Discover the Love Language of those you care about
Have you ever given a beautiful gift that fell flat?
Maybe the flowers earned a ‘meh’, or you got ticked off for spending too much on the gift you brought back from a trip. If you value gifting, it’s understandable these reactions make you feel unappreciated. You may even feel unloved or rejected.
But that’s not how your partner sees it! Chances are, they didn’t appreciate your present because gifts don’t make them feel loved. Instead, because their Love Language is Words of Affirmation, what they really wanted was a handwritten card.
When you discover your partner’s Love Language, you can give love in the way they best receive it. It’s a simple way to avoid rows over unnecessary gift spending and feel more deeply connected as a result.
2. Give love in a way it can be received
Remember your Love Language may well differ from your partner’s.
If you value gifts, chances are you’ll want to gift – because you want others to feel the way you do. But if gifts aren’t your partner’s thing, you won’t get the reaction you want.
If you want to hit the mark, give love in a way that reflects the receiver’s Love Language, NOT your own.
- Words of affirmation – give a handwritten note or card
- Gifts – give something physical.
- Acts of service – take care of errands or jobs your partner hates such as cleaning
- Quality time – go to the theatre, have dinner out, or a no-phone evening at home
- Physical touch – hold hands, hug, and other acts of physical affection.
If you spend money in a way that aligns with your partner’s Love Language, they’re going to feel all loved up!
3. Drop the judgement!
Have you ever argued with your partner because they ‘wasted’ money on stuff you didn’t value? From takeouts to another new pair of shoes, it’s hard not to judge and criticise if your money story has you making different choices.
Good news! There’s a super simple way to eliminate this common relationship conflict – for good!
In a relationship, there’s a lot of merit in pooling your finances. That said, it’s vital you both retain independence. You can do this with your personal spending budget.
Your personal spending budget is yours to spend any way you like – without being judged. If you value gifts, feel free to splurge on a new handbag. If your thing is quality time, spend it all on a spa trip. It doesn’t matter.
Personal spending gives you the freedom to be yourself and use your money your way – without the risk of criticism. It’s a simple agreement that will help you avoid the little financial feuds that drag a lot of couples down.
4. Love yourself!
Your Love Language can help ensure your money flows in a way that makes you feel loved! Remember, money isn’t meant to stagnant and accumulate for the sake of it. Instead, money is meant to flow through your life.
Don’t underestimate the power of self-love for attracting abundance. When you feel you’re worthy of receiving, you open the floodgates for more. I struggled with self-love. Now I have a weekly budget specifically for self-care. Each week, I invest in something like a massage, acupuncture, or a pedicure. It’s an intentional choice that’s transforming the relationship I have with myself.
My Love Language is quality time, so this self-care choice aligns with how I receive love – only this time, I’m giving quality time to myself.
What’s the equivalent for you?
5. Support others to spend through their Love Language
Money gets us in all sorts of tangles! It’s not a surprise when you look at all the negative language and stories associated with it.
Money is emotionally charged; igniting guilt, shame, and regret.
But when we create an intentional relationship with our money, these challenging feelings often dissolve. Instead of getting stressed, we can feel empowered through our finances. When we align our money with the things we value, we feel happier, freer, and more abundant as a result.
So encourage those you love to spend money on the things they love. Be a role model for intentional spending that’s aligned with your values and see how this behaviour rubs off on others.
When money flows in the direction of your values and Love Language, you feel more loved, more connected to others, and happier with yourself and your life.
So use this tool to guide your financial behaviours and spending choices. It’s so simple, but it will unleash huge amounts of happiness, freedom, and abundance in your life.
Disclaimer: All information contained within this article is of a general nature. Do not rely upon it when making financial decisions. Please consult a professional financial advisor or planner (like us!) before acting.