Friday Refine | Love.

Today is my final area of focus in my “Friday Refine” series. To this point, I’ve reviewed and refined my Food, Fitness, and Financial goals. Today, I’d like to discuss Love. Before you stop reading because you think this will be girly, emotional and mushy, stop. That’s not the Love I want to discuss today. I’m speaking of Love in general: how we treat and communicate with our family, friends, strangers. How can we express and show love to people we interact with on a daily basis?

My family – the people I love most.

So, why am I discussing “Love” on a health and wellness blog? That’s because I believe giving and receiving Love is a vital part of a healthy life. I attended a church service several weeks ago where a guest speaker reminded me of Love’s crucial role in each of our lives. He said, “No matter where you go, people are people and they all respond to love.”

A simple act of kindness can change someone’s life forever. A compliment can turn someone’s bad day into a great day. Pausing and truly listening to someone else and putting their needs first can affirm that person of their worth.

Some how, I’ve recently lost that focus. I’ve become consumed with putting my needs and wants before those I encounter daily. I’ve cared about advancing myself instead of putting others ahead of me. I’ve looked for ways to build myself up instead of lifting up another. And what have I gained by doing that? Nothing. What have I lost? My sense of purpose. Let me explain.

Imagae Source.

Have you ever heard of the book The Five Love Languages? I won’t go into too much detail about the book, but I recommend you read it. Author Gary Chapman explains that there is no universal way people give or receive love; he believes he give or receive love in five ways:

  1. Words of Affirmation
  2. Quality Time
  3. Gifts
  4. Acts of Service
  5. Physical Touch.

While we can all give and receive love through a combination of those five love languages, I’m primarily an acts of service girl. I like to find ways I can serve others to show and express my care for them, whether it’s running an errand, making cupcakes, cleaning up after a dinner, I gravitate toward’s  serving others. Except I haven’t these past few months. And I realize I’m missing out on opportunities to show Love to others.

During the past few weeks, I’ve been thinking of ways I can refine my “Love Life”. I’ve come up with four areas where I need to improve:

At work: I need to learn when to press the pause on work projects. I’m recognizing that I need to focus on balancing group sensitivity with task efficiency. I need to recognize that the people I work with are the people I spend most of my day with. Therefore, I need to look for ways to boost their morale, to affirm who they are, and listen to their needs. It’s time to incorporate random acts of kindness and spread smiles, at the very least, at the office.

With family: I recognize that I need to be more appreciative. Why is it easiest to be stressed or annoyed or frustrated in front of the ones you love most? I never want them to feel like I am taking them for granted. Therefore, I’m going to start looking for ways to show my gratitude of having them in my life. (Mom, if you’re reading this, I picked you up a lovely present that I can’t wait to give you…just because you’re an amazing and beautiful person!)

With friends: I recognize I need to be intentional. It seems life after college takes your friends anywhere and everywhere in the country. While they are always near and dear to my heart, I don’t tell them enough that they are. I need to start putting forth the effort to keep my relationships strong. I need to use resources like Skype, text, the phone or even the mail to let my friends know that I love them and care for them.

With boyfriend: I am a lucky/blessed girl. I have a really amazing boyfriend. Sadly, he’s in medical school in a different state. While I am so happy for him, it’s hard on the heart to be in a long distance relationship because he means the world to me. And since I’m an “acts of service” girl, it’s hard to do that long distance. So, I need to view this time period as a way to get to know a new way to express my love. I need to look for creative ways to show him I cherish him. I’m always worried I’ll come across as “cheesey,” but when you’re in love, does that really matter? If you all have any long distance suggestions, please share!

Well, there you have it. I’ve discovered a few ways where I know I need to refine the way I show and express love and care for the people I encounter daily. Everything in life stems from love and that’s why I felt it deserved its own Friday Refine post. So, go love others today. All you need is love…

By the way, don’t forget that SlimKicker is giving one of my readers an awesome 7 Quart Stainless Steel Slow Cooker. To enter this GIVEAWAY, visit this post. There’s only a few more days left to to enter to win!

Wishing you the best. katie

QUESTION OF THE DAY:
What are your thoughts on today’s post? Do you think Love & Health are related?
What are your weekend plans? Anyone having a Memorial Weekend picnic? 

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