A gift is something that you can hold in your hand and say, “Look, he was thinking of me,” or “She remembered me.” You must be thinking of someone to give a gift. The gift itself is a symbol of that thought. It doesn’t matter if it costs money.
Gifts need not to expensive, nor must they be given weekly. But for some individuals, their worth has nothing to do with monetary value and everything to do with love.
Within every language, there are many dialects. Here below you will find just a few but in the end you need to understand your spouse’s dialect.
Anything you can imagine, how much it costs is less important than the thought that goes with it. If a millionaire gives only one-dollar gifts regularly, the spouse may question whether that is an expression of love, but when family finances are limited, a one-dollar gift may speak a million dollars worth of love.
Gifts you find:
For example a flower from the yard or side of the road, a shell from the beach, a special stick etc. Anything that you add meaning to.
The Gift of Self:
There is an intangible gift that sometimes speaks more loudly than a gift that can be held in one’s hand. This is the gift of self or the gift of presence. Being there when your spouse needs you speaks loudly to the one whose primary love language is receiving gifts.
If your spouse’s love language is RECEIVING GIFTS:
- Try a parade of gifts: Leave a box of candy for your spouse in the morning, have flowers delivered in the afternoon, and give him a shirt in the evening. When your spouse asks, “What’s going on?” you respond: “Just trying to fill your love tank!”
- Let nature be your guide: The next time you take a walk through the neighbourhood, keep your eyes open for a gift for your spouse. It may be a stone, a stick, or a flower. You may even attach special meaning to your natural gift. For example, a smooth stone may symbolize your marriage with many of the rough places now polished. A rose may remind you of the beauty you see in your spouse.
- Discover the value of ‘handmade originals’. Make a gift for your spouse. This may require you to enrol in an art or crafts class: ceramics, silver smithing, painting, wood carving, etc. Your main purpose for enrolling is to make your spouse a gift. A handmade gift often becomes a family heirloom.
- Give your spouse a gift every day for one week. It need not be a special week, just any week. I promise you it will become “The Week That Was!” If you are really energetic, you can make it “The Month That Was!” No, your spouse will not expect you to keep this up for a lifetime.
- Keep a ‘Gift Idea Notebook’. Every time you hear your spouse says: “I really like that,” or ‘Oh, I would really like to have one of those!” write it down in your notebook. Listen carefully and you will get quite a list. This will serve as a guide when you get ready to select a gift. To prime the pump, you may look through a shopping catalogue together.
- “Help! I’m confused!” If you really don’t have a clue as to how to select a gift for your spouse, ask a friend or family member who knows your wife or husband well to help you. Most people enjoy making a friend happy by getting them a gift, especially if it is with your money.
- Offer the gift of presence. Say to your spouse: “I want to offer the gift of my presence at any event or on any occasion you would like this month. You tell me when, and I will make every effort to be there.” Get ready! Be positive! Who knows, you may enjoy the symphony or the hockey game.
- Give your spouse a book and agree to read it yourself. Then offer to discuss together a chapter each week. Don’t choose a book that you want him or her to read. Choose a book on a topic in which you know your spouse has an interest: sex, football, needlework, money management, child rearing, religion, or backpacking.
- Give a lasting tribute. Give a substantial gift to your spouse’s church or favourite charity in honour of her birthday, your anniversary, or another occasion. Ask the charity to send a card informing your spouse of what you have done. The church or charity will be excited and so will your spouse.
- Give a living gift. Purchase and plant a tree or flowering scrub in honour of your spouse. You may plant it in your own yard, where you can water and nurture it, or in a public park or forest where others can also enjoy it. You will get credit for this one year after year.
(Please also refer to the book ‘The five Love Languages’ by Gary Chapman)