WHAT MATTERS TO THE PEOPLE WHO ARE IMPORTANT TO YOU? Speak My Language February 2019
Have you ever read “The Five Love Languages”? I learned about them early in my law practice, thanks to the amazing woman in my life, Ashley. This was when we were just dating, and I’d shared with Ashley that I wanted to get to know more marriage counselors in my field in order to match my clients with professionals who could save their marriages. Ashley suggested that reading “The Five Love Languages” might be a good way to connect with these folks. I picked it up and read it, and I was amazed at how the book went beyond being a common conversation starter to impacting every relationship in my life. Love languages aren’t only applicable to romantic love; they’re fundamental to learning what’s important to someone and what makes them feel special. Professionally, understanding this helped me better understand people’s motivations. In family law, so much of a case comes down to what motivates people and discovering what’s truly important to them. As I brought this knowledge into my work, it gave me a sense of what was most important to
my client in a divorce settlement. It helped us complete the process on fair terms and as soon as possible, which is my goal with each case.
In addition to helping me in my professional life, I also learned a lot about Ashley. I learned that for Ashley, acts of service are her first love language. I also learned about myself — I learned quality time is a big way that I experience love. We got to know each other better through our love languages. It was so insightful to sit back and analyze these important parts of who we are before we got married. I think any couple can benefit from learning about their love languages. Even if you already have a great relationship, it’s only going to make it better. Since reading the book, I’ve become more aware of what makes someone else feel loved. Within our family, Ashley’s parents and I have similar primary love languages. Quality time is how we express and experience love, so the greatest gift we can ever give them, especially when it comes to their grandkids, is to spend time with them. It’s incredible how much it opens up the relationships in your life when you find out what’s important to the people who are important to you. One of the early dates Ashley and I went on was close to Valentine’s Day. I invited Ashley over to my house for a sushi-making date. Neither of us had ever made our own sushi before, and truth be told, our rolls ended up more like sushi burritos. It gave us plenty to laugh about, and it also set a tradition for us of getting sushi for Valentine’s Day. Now that we have two little ones, it’s not as easy to go out on a date, but we’ll keep the tradition going this year by ordering in for sushi and enjoying a nice evening with our family. I know Valentine’s Day can be challenging when you’re not in a positive place in your relationship. It’s why I created the website StayMarriedFlorida.com, as a free resource to help couples strengthen their relationships. There are articles and links to marriage counselors and other mental health professionals in the South Florida area. I hope you and your loved ones find it helpful.
Here’s to appreciating — and being appreciated by — the loving people in our lives, in whatever language speaks to us.
– Chris Bruce
Russell & Ruby love to swing!
(561) 810-0170 • 1www.brucepa.com
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