It’s not Easter, not Christmas, not even your birthday! Yet when you slipped your hand into the inner pocket of your coat to reach for your wallet, you stumbled upon something that wasn’t there the last time you wore the skin: a new, stylish pen and a small, folded piece of paper. You are surprised but curious, so you unfold the paper; it reads: “You’ll need it to sign the contract.” You were signed, “Sarah.” Your face immediately lights up. Why? It’s straightforward. You’re a real estate agent who always forgets to carry around a pen. This time though, Sarah’s saved you the potential embarrassment by slipping it into your pocket. She knew it would make you happy. But it didn’t. It saved your day! Sarah speaks your love language… and now it’s your turn to show love by sending a text message. Her love language is “Words of Affirmation,” so the text is your best gift!
As you’ve seen, people have different love languages, and understanding and reacting to your spouse’s default setting, let’s say, is crucial for a growing relationship. In the example above, I wanted to show how two individuals can complement each other. Also, I wanted to stress that gift-giving isn’t what people usually believe it to be, a materialistic gesture. Far from it! A person whose native tongue is “Receiving gifts” will shine like the sun for a mere colored pebble, as long as they are convinced you got it while thinking of them!
The golden rule here is: A gift is proof of love. “Receiving gifts” is not my primary love language, but I’ve learned to speak it because I have people I care about who do. Honestly, it’s pretty easy if you remember the rule, and, in a way, it’s made me more receptive and empathic. How did I achieve that? I noticed my best friend likes a particular beer brand, so I get it even if it’s not on my shopping list. When he comes around, I ask him to call me something from the fridge. “You remembered…”
I hear that from the other room while prepping up a movie.
Of course, he would’ve drank any beer I had in the fridge, but the effect wouldn’t have been the same! That’s what “Receiving gifts” is all about. It’s not about the money; it’s about the thought. Whether we’re talking about lovers, family, or friends, it’s all the same- be receptive, learn what they like, and then surprise them.
A natural question is when to give gifts; should I wait until their birthday? No. Make a holiday out of an ordinary day. People who speak “Receiving gifts” glow just as much if you spontaneously surprise them, even though it’s…I don’t know…Thursday. Or Friday. At the same time, do not minimize the importance of a standard holiday such as Easter, Christmas, Halloween, or their birthday. Forgetting about one is catastrophic- it screams, “You don’t care about me!”.
As I said, this love language doesn’t focus on the expensive side of items but on the excitement, time, and thought you put into it. That’s what a gift language speaker looks for…
- Don’t come home empty-handed from a road trip or even from a business trip!
- Send flowers through a courier if you don’t have the time to travel.
- Prep something nice if your loved one is feeling down.
- Extend the proverbial olive branch.
Before we move on to the list of creative gifts, let me clarify what I meant by extending the olive branch. Gift-giving is an excellent way to seek reconciliation, but only AFTER you have dealt with the issue at hand. I underline the never here: try to buy your partner’s feelings or think it’s a way to buy your guilt out. For someone who speaks this love language, it’s a terrible offense, like saying they are for sale. It may fool them once or twice but hurt the long-term relationship.
Bellow, you have a list of creative and inexpensive gifts for your loved one. If nothing from here helps, I recommend you start indexing, so to say, what they want or would like. Lists are always helpful; even if that doesn’t work, a gift card is a universal key. Just make sure not to use it too often. Otherwise, the person will think you know nothing about them!
- Bring your spouse or girlfriend flowers.
- Treat them to some time at the spa.
- Purchase a book that they have wanted.
- Create a collage of photos of important events/moments for them to display.
- Put together a book of inspiring quotes for your spouse- handwritten by you.
- Use your talent to make them something: painting, mosaic, a yummy treat, etc.
- Take them out to their favorite place.
- Drop a small gift off for them at work.
- Sneak a treat into their lunch/bag.
- Rent their favorite movie.
- Get the video game they’ve wanted.
Ultimately, gift-giving is about paying attention to the other person and genuinely trying to connect on their level. With a bit of help from friends or family, you can certainly learn in time to speak “Receiving gifts.”