Whether it’s your spouse, significant other, family, friends, or even business associates, each individual speaks his or her own love language. “The Five Love Languages” are: Words of Affirmation, Quality Time, Receiving Gifts, Acts of Service, and Physical Touch. Understanding which of these languages makes that special someone feel loved can be essential to the success of any relationship. Join Jason Hartman and renowned author, Dr. Gary Chapman as they discuss these timeless concepts and how our primary language affects our interactions in our relationships. Please visit: http://www.jasonhartman.com/podcast.
Dr. Gary Chapman seeks to fulfill his call to the ministry as a pastor, speaker, and author. He speaks extensively throughout the U.S. and internationally on marriage, family, and relationships. The government of Singapore invited him to present his marriage seminar there and the Chaplain’s Office of NATO issued a special invitation for Dr. Chapman to speak to the NATO forces in Germany. Other engagements have taken him to England, Africa, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Mexico and Hong Kong. Sales exceeding 5 million copies earned him the Platinum Book Award from the Evangelical Publishers Association for The Five Love Languages, which has been translated into over thirty-six languages. Twenty-seven other books and five video series are also among his publications.
ANNOUNCER: Welcome to Creating Wealth with Jason Hartman! During this program Jason is going to tell you some really exciting things that you probably haven’t thought of before, and a new slant on investing: fresh new approaches to America’s best investment that will enable you to create more wealth and happiness than you ever thought possible. Jason is a genuine, self-made multi-millionaire who not only talks the talk, but walks the walk. He’s been a successful investor for 20 years and currently owns properties in 11 states and 17 cities. This program will help you follow in Jason’s footsteps on the road to financial freedom. You really can do it! And now, here’s your host, Jason Hartman, with the complete solution for real estate investors.
JASON HARTMAN: Hey, thank you so much for tuning in to the Creating Wealth Show! This is episode #220, and this is Jason Hartman. How are you today? Thanks for listening. As we do with every 10th show, as all of you regular listeners know, we do an off-topic, not financial, not real estate investing, as we focus on the rest of the shows. And today we’re going to talk for the first time ever about relationships, and we have Gary Chapman to talk about the Five Love Languages. So I think you’ll enjoy this interview that we’ve got coming up here in a moment.
But before we get to Gary Chapman, a couple other things. First of all, did you all do your homework? You’ll remember, on show #219, I asked you, and I asked you before, to go see the movie Yes Man. I’m not gonna harp on this too much, but it’s a funny movie, and it’s a good movie, and it just shows you about like opportunities in life, and it’s really interesting. I think it’s something we ought to all practice more, saying yes more often. But not to the point of being imprudent, of course. Or foolish, of course. Not to that point.
A couple things; this week I had a few problems with two of my properties, actually. They’re both self-managed properties, and that’s why I thought I’d mention them to you in particular. These were in Houston, and if you can believe it, I had two different properties, and two air conditioners went out, within days of each other. And of course, Houston is hot and humid, so it was not a good thing. But the reason I really bring these up is because they’re self-managed properties. And I’ve talked in the past about self-management, and we had a special members-only conference call on self-management recently. And I just never thought you could really successfully manage properties that are a long distance away from you, and properties that maybe you’ve never even seen, that are rented to tenants you’ve never met. And I have been doing that pretty successfully, and I would say this was the worst problem I’ve had ever in a self-managed property.
And basically—it’s interesting, it’s like a tale of two tenants in these two properties. Because one tenant, in my opinion, is a real jerk, frankly. Of course, I’ve never met either of them. But this one guy—you just can’t do anything right for him. And the other tenant is super nice, just the greatest tenant you’d ever want to talk to. And it’s interesting, because the one emails me and says, the air conditioning is out. So it’s amazing how small these seemingly large problems really are. Really, just not a big deal to fix it. And I’m gonna tell you, this one seems like it was bad. But it really wasn’t too difficult. So the air conditioning goes out, it’s a Friday night, I look online, I call three phone numbers, that took all of a couple of minutes, no big deal. Two of the three call me back, one is out there Saturday morning, they charge me—I think it was $300 and something, $320, or something like that. And got it fixed. Well, turns out that four days later, that air conditioning dies again. And I call the same guy back, complain, make a fuss about it with him and said, hey, you just fixed it, what’s your warranty, etcetera, and he goes out and he puts another part in it, replaces the motor, and does it for free, he says.
But anyway, one of the things on the other property, I had a different vendor fix the other property. And these properties aren’t far away from each other. But I didn’t think the first guy was real great on the first one that went out, and the second one I just used somebody different. And what’s interesting about that one is that this guy that did the first property I mentioned, went out there and told me it would be $700, and I’m like oh my gosh, that’s just terrible. $700. That’s half a month’s rent for that property, almost. So, I call the other vendor and have them go out, and at first, he says it’ll be about $300. But, I sort of hem and haw, and he says well, you know what, that part actually is probably under warranty, and you know, most of these air conditioning units, if you don’t have an extended warranty, they just have a 5-year manufacturer’s warranty on parts, and then you have to pay for the labor. So turns out he got that under warranty, and I spent about $100—I think it was $180 on that one.
So again: self-management. Properties I’ve never seen. I’ve never seen these properties, I’ve never met these tenants, and here I am, a long, long distance away, and these are the two biggest problems I’ve ever had. And they’re really not that big a deal. So, I think you can self-manage properties successfully. Again, these took, all told, maybe I spent, I don’t know. 30 minutes? Getting both air conditioners fixed? Maybe 45 minutes. Emails back and forth, etcetera. Just, when you stop blowing these things out of proportion, they’re really just not that big a deal. I have many properties that I have managers managing them. I do it both ways. But whenever I have a manager that’s giving me a problem, or I don’t like, you know, I just get rid of them, and self-manage those properties. I’m doing both strategies on different properties. If I like the manager and they’re doing a good job, I just keep them. If they’re not, I’ll just self-manage the properties.
So again, approach these things with flexibility, and don’t make a mountain out of a molehill. Again, two big problems, seemingly big problems, handled in very little time, very little cost, just not a big deal in the overall scheme of things. I mean, these properties are great properties otherwise. So. Also, talking about bigger properties—you know, the big 125-unit apartment complex that I recently purchased with a client of ours—that one, we foreclosed—we bought the note, we foreclosed on the note without incident. That could have gone a lot worse, but it went really well, so far. And we took over management on that property, and that one is looking pretty darn good. Now we’re starting to do improvements, and install water-saving showerheads, water-saving toilets. In a big apartment complex, when you save on your water bill, it really does add up, and can add a lot of value to the property.
So, again, if you’re interested in large deals, in multi-family deals, in anything larger, commercial real estate opportunities, you have to let us know, because you really won’t see these properties on our website very often. You will from time to time, but again, the newly revamped website, at www.jasonhartman.com, has some of these properties on. But more often than not, you just need to let us know what you’re looking for. And on those properties, we need to find it for you. it’s different with the smaller stuff, the single family homes, the duplexes, the fourplexes. Those are different. Those are on our website. It’s just a different business, and it has a different nature to it, and that’s why you won’t see as much in the way of multi-family and large-deal inventory on the www.jasonhartman.com website under properties.
But, let’s see what else here. One more thing I want to mention to you about self-management, and management with managers, actually. Whenever I hear someone who got turned off from real estate investing, they always seem to have a story that goes something like this. Well, I had to evict the tenant, they didn’t pay their rent, and then they damaged the property, and left me holding the bag for $3000, or something like that. And what amazes me is how incredibly helpless these people act. Every time, if that ever happens to you—and again, it’s rare! It really is rare! I don’t know how many tenants I’ve had over the years, but maybe now upwards of 200 tenants, probably. 250? I don’t know. You have a few bad apples in there from time to time. And when you do, act like a businessperson! Send the person to collection! Your property manager, if you have one, can go to court and get a judgment for you. Or the eviction service will get the judgment. You turn that judgment from the court over to a collection agency. And even if you don’t get a judgment, you can turn the collection account over to a collection agency, but it’s much less powerful without a legal judgment; all they really do is write letters and make phone calls in those cases. But with a legal judgment, you have the force of law, and you can really collect on these things! And in most places, they accumulate interest! So sometimes the judgment can actually be kind of a good investment.
So I wanted to give you one of the collection agencies that I’ve used, and it’s called IC System, and their website is www.ICSystem.com. We may actually get them on the show, or get another collection agency on the show. Because landlords are not helpless. Landlords have rights. And pursue your rights! You’re delegating the job to someone else. You’re gonna give the collection agency probably 30%, 35%, for doing the collection, but many times, and this varies location to location of course, they can add the collection fees to the bill! So you’re really paying nothing for it! The debtor is paying for it, sometimes. So again, this gets into the area of law. I’m not an attorney, I can’t give legal advice, of course. But I definitely would give you business advice. And that is, collect what is owed to you, if you ever have that problem. Don’t just have a victim story; get the money! This is a business, like any other business.
On the website, www.jasonhartman.com, we’ve revised that site, we switched over the podcast feed, and if you’re hearing this show now, it looks like it all worked. So, that’s really good news. We had to work that with iTunes, and the website, and the feed, and all the different tools that we use for tracking and analytics on the show. And anyway, glad you are hearing this show now, because we made that big switch.
Two markets that I really, really kind of highlight at the moment are Dallas and Atlanta. And we’re gonna be talking about these. We’ve got that new financing program for foreign nationals, for IRA buyers, where they can get some excellent semi-long-term financing at good rates and good terms, and so, we’ve got that coming up on one of the shows here real soon. But here’s a Dallas property, for example. This one is 1350 square feet. It’s only $69,500. Subject to qualifying at 20% down. You need $17,500 to buy it. You’re only paying $51 per square foot. The projected rent is $900, which leads to a projected positive cash flow of $3115 per year, and that includes a vacancy rate imputed in there of 8%, and an overall return on investment of 38% annually. 38% annually! Now, listen to this next metric I’m going to tell you: cash on cash return. What is cash on cash return? It’s just cash for cash back. That’s all it is. This one is unbelievable cash on cash. Because if the property goes down in value—if the property is a disaster in every other way except that you’re collecting the rent, and the maintenance stays moderate at only 3%, which is, you know, a reasonable amount, and you’ve got a one-year warranty on this property, your cash on cash return here is projected at 18% annually. 18%. That’s almost 20% annually! Before you take any tax benefits, before you have any increases in value down the road. This is just simple cash on cash. And that’s with the management fees, and everything built into that. So, again—fully rehabbed property, our Dallas vendor does a great job at that. If you met them at any of our recent live events, the last Meet the Masters event, any of our Creating Wealth events, I’m sure you know that they run a really impressive operation there. So. Again, that’s a pretty phenomenal deal, so check that out.
And if you’re interested in lending, I just had one of my loans pay off. You know I like being a borrower much better than being a lender. But, sometimes I actually like being a lender a little bit. I’m starting to like it more and more. And the only time I start to like it is on the short term loans that turn over quickly. So, you really don’t have any inflation risk there. And I just got paid off on one. I got almost 13% interest, and it was a four month loan. And as I cycle those in, I try to keep that money lent out as much as possible. Now again, it’s not as good as owning the property, because the property has a lot more multi-dimensional features that pay you, right? But, it’s pretty darn good for lending and for simplicity, because you never get calls about hey the air conditioner broke when you’re the lender, right? You’re just simply a lender, and lenders have a very simple business: they just get a return on the money. As long as the debtor is paying. If the debtor is not paying, you start to worry about your equity position. Again, all of the stuff I’m doing, you’re in first position, and have good, good protective equity there. So, if you’re interested in lending, you know, let me know, and we will give you a couple of referrals, and there may be some opportunities for you. This is not available to everyone; it’s not available to everybody in every state. There are some legal things, and things like that. But just wanted to mention to you that I am doing it, and it’s a relatively small portion of my investment portfolio, because mostly, again, I want to own the physical asset. I like owning the property the very best.
And the comparison is, if you’re making about 13% on lending, but you could make 38% in the example I just gave you, which would you rather have? I mean, even if the property only works out half as well, half of 38%, you’re at 19% annually, right? And the lending, you’re not—you’re just under 13%. So, again, I still like the real estate better. But some people like the simplicity of the lending. So, I understand that. And I do both.
I did want to mention to you, if you’re considering walking away from a property, or you know anyone who is, I did a great episode on that on my Holistic Survival Show. You can find that on iTunes, along with all my other shows. Just search by my name, in the iTunes store. Or just go to www.HolisticSurvival.com. And that show is geared towards protecting the people, places, and profits you care about in uncertain times. And we did a show with www.YouWalkAway.com, and just some really creative ways to manage defaults on properties, and things like that. We’ve talked about strategic defaults before, so. If you or anyone you know needs that, or needs loan modification, go listen to that show, available at www.HolisticSurvival.com or in the iTunes store, just by searching my name.
What else do I want to mention to you before we talk about relationships here with Gary Chapman? Future shows. So of course, as I mentioned last time, we’re going to be profiling the Atlanta market, the foreign national financing opportunity, for non-US citizens. We’re going to be profiling some goods markets in the 220 series of shows. And lending opportunities, and a reason to be really, really optimistic. I talk a lot on the show about how the economy is a mess, and the current administration doesn’t get it, and I definitely think all of that is true. And I’m always just looking for ways to help exploit that opportunity, so you and I can take advantage of the mess that is current affairs. And so, on this one show coming up though, we’re going to talk to Dr. Nick Begich, and we’re going to talk to him about America’s energy and mineral prosperity. And you will not believe when you really, really look at it, how incredibly wealthy this country is.
In my Creating Wealth Home Study Course, and the live event, I outline six ways that the country can get out of its mess. And a couple of them are, of course, they can default, and not pay all of those unfunded entitlements and so forth. The $60 trillion time bomb, as I refer to it. They can raise taxes, but that’s not gonna work, because you can’t raise enough tax to pay for the debt. They can sell off assets to other countries; grow our way out of it, that would be the most positive way, of course, or the most likely way: inflate our way out of it. Now again, I know I didn’t cover all six, but that’s just a little highlight. So, inflate our way out of the mess. And that’s the most likely solution. But really, when you look at the amount of energy and resource prosperity in this country, in Alaska and North Dakota, in the Gulf Coast, in other places as well, it is nothing short of phenomenal. So, we’re gonna do a show coming up. I already recorded it last week, and we’ll publish it soon, about a reason to be really, really optimistic about the future. So, finally some really good news.
So we’ll have that coming up, and we will be back with Gary Chapman on the Five Love Languages on this 10th show special, here in just a moment.
ANNOUNCER: What’s great about the shows you’ll find on www.jasonhartman.com is that if you want to learn about some cool new investor software, there’s a show for that! If you want to learn why Rome fell, Hitler rose, and Enron failed, there’s a show for that! If you want to know about property evaluation technology on the iPhone, there’s a show for that. And if you’d like to know how to make millions with mobile homes, there’s even a show for that. Yep, there’s a show for just about anything. Only from www.jasonhartman.com. Or type in Jason Hartman in the iTunes store!
JASON HARTMAN: My pleasure to welcome Dr. Gary Chapman to the show! He is a very well known marriage counselor and director of marriage seminars. His very, very famous work—he has many of them—but his probably most famous is The Five Love Languages, and it has sold upwards of six million copies, translated into 40 languages, and has been on the #1 spot of the New York Times Bestseller List, and on many other bestseller lists. It’s a pleasure to have Gary from North Carolina today. Gary, welcome. How are you!
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Well, thank you Jason! It’s good to be with you. I am doing great!
JASON HARTMAN: Well good, good! Tell us about The Five Love Languages. And we want to hear from the perspective of people looking for a relationship, and people in a relationship as well. And I know you’ve got The Five Love Languages for singles. You’ve got a new book about what people should have known, or wished they’d known before getting married, and so forth. But, start wherever you like, Gary.
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: You know, what I discovered years ago, Jason, in counseling, is that what makes one person feel loved, doesn’t necessarily make another person feel loved. So they would sit in my office, husband and wife. She would say, I just feel like he doesn’t love me! And he would say, I don’t know what else to do! You know? I do this, and this, and this, and she doesn’t feel loved! So he was sincere, he was loving her, she didn’t get it. And I realized that people were missing each other. I kept hearing similar stories over and over again, and I knew there was a pattern. I just didn’t know what it was. So I went through about 12 years of my counseling notes, and asked myself, when someone said in my office, I feel like my spouse doesn’t love me, what did they want? What were they complaining about? And their answers fell into five categories. I later called them the Five Love Languages. I started sharing that in small groups, and then I started sharing it in my counseling, that we each have a different Love Language, and you have to learn to speak the other person’s language. And after about five years of using that in small groups and counseling, I decided to write the book, because I knew that it would help people learn how to connect with each other emotionally. And then, you know, I was thinking primarily in the marriage relationship, and the original book is addressed to married couples. But I had a lot of singles say, yeah, I know you wrote that book for couples, but I read it, and it helped me in all of my relationships. Why don’t you write one for singles? So that’s how the singles edition was born. Because I do think that this applies in all human relationships.
JASON HARTMAN: Yeah, and you even address dealing with your children, probably your friends, everything, right? The Five Languages apply in intimate relationships and non-intimate relationships too, right?
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Yeah. You know, Jason, let’s face it: the deepest emotional need we have is the need to feel loved. Everybody wants to feel loved by the significant people in their lives. If you do feel loved, life is beautiful. If you don’t feel loved, life can be very complex. So, whether you’re talking about a parent/child relationship, or whether you’re talking about a dating relationship, or a marriage relationship, learning how to communicate love in a language the other person will feel—you know, it’s meeting that emotional need for love. That’s what this book is all about. That’s why I think this book has been so successful.
JASON HARTMAN: Well you know Gary, I can’t help but kind of make the connection here. All of the listeners of course know what the golden rule is; hopefully they practice the golden rule. But I had Tony Alessandra on one of my shows, and you probably know his work; he talks about the platinum rule. And that is treating people the way they want to be treated. And I think that ties in pretty well with the Five Love Languages, doesn’t it? Because you’ve gotta communicate with the person on their own preference, their own modality, right?
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Yeah, that’s exactly right, Jason. You know, typically we speak our own language. Whatever makes me feel loved is what I’m gonna do for the other person. But if that’s not their language, it won’t mean to them what it would mean to me. So let’s say my language is words of affirmation, and what I want to hear my wife say is, I love you, you’re wonderful, I appreciate what you did, you know, all these positive things. So that’s what I do for her, because it makes me feel love. But her language may be acts of service—doing things for her. So here I am giving her all these words, and after a while, she’s gonna say to me, you know, you keep saying I love you I love you. I’m kind of sick of the words. If you love me, why don’t you do something to help me?
JASON HARTMAN: Right. She wants you to show it to her, right?
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Absolutely. And I’m blown away. You know, I was loving the woman! What’s wrong?
JASON HARTMAN: Yeah, you can’t figure out why she’s upset, right. Makes sense. Well, you know, just told us two of the five languages. What are the other three?
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Receiving gifts. It’s universal to receive gifts as an expression of love. My academic background is anthropology, especially cultural anthropology. We’ve never discovered a culture where gift giving is not an expression of love. So giving gifts and receiving gifts. And then quality time: giving the person your undivided attention. I’m not talking about sitting in the same room watching television. TV is off, you’re looking at each other, you’re interacting, you’re sharing, you’re listening; quality time, they have your undivided attention. And then number five is physical touch. And we’ve long known the emotional power of physical touch. So, we’re talking about—and in every culture, there are appropriate touches between males and females, whether they’re married or whether they’re single, and it’s physical touch that communicates love to some people. This is their primary language.
JASON HARTMAN: I love the way Denis Waitley says that; he says touch is the magic wand of intimacy. So, yeah, that’s definitely important. How do we discover, Gary, what someone else’s language is? You don’t just ask them, do you? What is the best way to go about that?
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Well, if you were discussing the topic with them, and they’re open, you can go online and take a little quiz. Or they can go online and take a little quiz, and it’ll tell them, and then they’ll tell you. That’s one way. And that would be at FiveLoveLanguages.com. But another way—there’s two or three other clues. One is you observe their behavior. How do they respond to other people? If they’re always, when they greet people, giving them a pat on the back, or a hug, then physical touch is probably their language. If they’re speaking that to others on a regular basis, it’s probably what they want. If they’re always giving encouraging words to people, then words of affirmation is probably their language. So, observe their behavior. Secondly, what do they complain about most often? The wife who says to the husband, we don’t ever spend any time together! I mean, we’re like two ships passing in the night! She’s saying, quality time is my love language, and I’m not getting it from you. So, what they’re complaining about. if he says to her, I don’t think you would ever touch me if I didn’t initiate it—he’s telling her that physical touch is his love language. So, listen to the complaints. And then thirdly, what do they request of you most often? If they’re saying periodically, could we take a walk after dinner? Or, you think we could get a weekend away? They’re asking you for quality time. If you put those three together, Jason, you’ll very likely find out the other person’s primary love language.
JASON HARTMAN: Yeah, good point. Let’s actually kind of put it in reverse here, and go maybe in chronological order. What’s the title of your new book, Gary?
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: My new book is, Things I Wish I’d Known Before We Got Married.
JASON HARTMAN: Okay, so perfect. I want to talk about that, and you have another book, the Five Love Languages for Singles. Let’s start with the single person looking for a relationship, and then we’ll tie it back into being in a relationship, as you were just now. How do singles use your body of work? Whether it be the things they wish they knew, or the Five Languages.
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Well, this most recent book, Things I Wish I’d Known Before We Got Married—I really wrote that to singles in all categories, whether they’re dating, or whether they’re engaged, or whether they’re just hoping to find somebody they can relate to. And what I’m saying to them is, if you think that some day you will get married, now is the time to prepare for marriage. Don’t wait! You know, until you are engaged, and then say, oh, we gotta get ready for marriage. No, get ready for marriage now! and I’m sharing in that book 12 things that had I known these things, it would have made my life much easier in the early days of my marriage. So, I’m trying to say to singles, why don’t you learn from my mistakes?
Here’s some things that can help you. For example, one of the things I talk about in that book is, I wish I’d known that falling in love or being in love is not an adequate foundation for marriage. And the reason I say that is, the experience that we typically call falling in love, is temporary. It has an average lifespan of two years. You will come down off the high. And that’s when all the other things that you ignored, that your friends told you about—you know, your mother said, honey, have you considered, he hasn’t had a steady job in five years? And you said, momma, give him a break. He’s just waiting for the right opportunity. But when you come down off the high, you’re gonna start thinking, mother was right. He’s lazy. So, I wish I’d known that before I got married. Because when I came down off the high, right not very long after we got married, I was frustrated. I didn’t realize that I was gonna come down. And when I came down I thought oh man, and I realized there were things about her that irritated me, and we ended up arguing with each other, and it wasn’t a very pretty picture. And I wish I’d been prepared for that.
I wish I’d known that there’s two stages of romantic love. One is the in love experience, in which the emotions push you along, and then there’s the more intentional stage, which we’re talking about today in the Five Love Languages, where you have to learn how to keep emotional love alive by speaking each others’ love language. So, for singles, I would say, if you can acquaint yourselves with this Love Language concept, and then read this book on things I wish I’d known, I think it’ll give you ideas on what you need to be talking about when you do get in a dating relationship. Or if you’re already in a dating relationship, it will give you an idea of the kind of topics the two of you need to discuss, and the issues and things you need to learn on the road to getting married.
JASON HARTMAN: Very good points. And with that, and more about how someone discovers it, or discovers those things in that partner? I mean, is this a disqualifier in any sense, Gary? Or is it just a better relating tool? Or do sometimes you find that maybe, you know, a couple doesn’t relate? I mean, people have their different languages and so forth, but do they ever just not work, in your eyes? Or can any relationship work, if it’s worth it?
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Yeah, I don’t think so. I think—now, obviously if their #1—that is, their primary Love Language—their #1 out of the 5, is your #5—that is, it means almost nothing to you—then you will have a learning curve. But the good news is, you can learn to speak these languages. Let’s face it. Most of us did not grow up hearing and speaking these five languages. We perhaps learned one or two of them, and that’s what we speak. So let’s say, if words of affirmation did not come easily to you; you didn’t receive a lot of words of affirmation, you’re not motivated to do that, it doesn’t—you know, you just—it’s very meaningless to you, and then you find out that the person that you’re dating, or the person you’re married, that that’s their primary language? Well, you’re gonna have to work at it. It’s going to be a learning curve. I usually suggest, get you a notebook, start writing down things you admire about the person, things you like about them. Listen to people, other people, as they share comments, and you hear those comments. Maybe when you read a book, or listen to television and so forth, write down positive statements you hear people say. Stand in front of the mirror, read those things out loud so you hear yourself saying them, pick out one of them, walk in the room where they are, and say it! You know? You break the silence. And the second time it’s easier. The third time it’s easier. You can learn to speak words of affirmation even if you didn’t grow up receiving that Love Language.
JASON HARTMAN: What is the love tank?
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: [LAUGHTER]. I use that concept, Jason, simply to give people a visual image. You know? An automobile has a gasoline tank, and if the gasoline tank is full, it’s gonna operate fine. If the gasoline tank is empty, the car’s not going to operate. And I like to say that we have an emotional love tank, and if the love tank is full—that is, we genuinely feel loved by the other person—the relationship moves along in a positive way. But if the love tank is empty—you don’t feel loved by that person—then the relationship begins to get shaky. And essentially, eventually, if you don’t do anything about it, the relationship will die. Because if a relationship does not have a sense of love, a measure of emotional love, the relationship goes downhill.
JASON HARTMAN: My ex-girlfriend Lynn is the person who actually introduced me to your work about two years ago, maybe. And I believe she mentioned something, Gary, about a time frame of two years. What was that about? Was she correct in mentioning that?
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Yeah, it’s based on the research that was done by Dorothy Tennov, Bridgeport, Connecticut. She did a long-term study on the in love experience; that is, this euphoric stage of a love relationship where you see the person as just being absolutely incredibly wonderful, you don’t see the negative things that are there, you’re just pushed along by these euphoric emotions. It’s something you’ve never felt before, or you’ve seldom felt before, and you just know that you’re gonna be happy if you can be with this person forever. We call it falling in love, or being in love. And her study indicated that the average lifespan of that heightened emotion is two years. And so, consequently, most people date at least two years before they get married, so when they get married, or soon after they get married, they tend to come down off the high. Now, some people blame marriage on that.
JASON HARTMAN: Right, the honeymoon is over.
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: It was better before we got married, you know. It has nothing to do with whether you get married or don’t get married. You will come down off the high whether you marry or don’t marry. So, that’s what she was talking about. And that’s why—here’s what happens, Jason, a lot of times in a dating relationship. A couple will be attracted to each other, they start dating, they become obsessed with each other, they feel loved by each other, and things just go along really, really wonderful, and then the two years pass, and they begin to come down off the high, and they don’t have those feelings, and they start thinking well, maybe this is not the right one for me. You know, I don’t feel like I used to feel. Well, if you understand this, you know that what’s happening is very natural and very normal. Now, what happens most of the time, when people don’t understand this, they bail out on that relationship. They get out of that relationship.
Whereas, they may have really been good for each other. They may have been a good match for each other, but they made the decision to break off the relationship because they lost the love feelings. Had they learned the Love Language concept, and spoken each others’ language, then they would keep emotional love alive, and they could make their decision to marry or not to marry based on other issues in the relationship. You know, do we have enough in common intellectually, emotionally, socially, all those things, to really build a marriage? So I think if singles understand this, it will help them assess their dating relationships.
JASON HARTMAN: Yeah, makes a lot of sense. So that two year point, it’s a recommendation then, that says don’t get married before two years? Is that what you’re saying?
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Well, I wouldn’t say that necessarily. But I would say you’re far more likely to make a wise decision if you have come down off the high, because then you recognize some of their weaknesses as well as their strengths. And you can work on those things. But when you’re in that euphoria, you think, well, we don’t have anything to work on! You know, it’s just perfect! In fact, that—I had a lady say to me, she was engaged, and she was in the euphoria, and she asked me what I did, and I said well, I do marriage seminars. And she said, well, what’s that? I said well, I help people work on their marriage. And she said well, what do you have to work on? If you’re in love….
JASON HARTMAN: Yeah, it’s all just easy, right? Not true.
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Yeah, and that’s the way you feel when you’re in love! You know, there’s nothing to work on!
JASON HARTMAN: Yeah, that’s—that wears off eventually, and it gets down to a realistic relationship, exactly. Let me take a brief pause; we’ll be back in just a minute.
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JASON HARTMAN: One of the things—you talk about the difference of the Five Languages. But one of them in particular—words of affirmation—since that one involves words, it has some different dialects, doesn’t it, Gary?
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Yeah. It can be words that focus, for example, on their personality. One of the things I like about you is you’re so optimistic. You know, I tend to be pessimistic. You’re saying to this person. It obviously needs to be a true statement. But it can focus on their personality, it can focus on the way they look, it can focus on something they did for you, it can be encouraging words—they express to you a desire to do something, and they’re a little fearful of doing it, and they say well, it’s up to you, of course, to decide what you’d like to do, but just observing you, I think that if you really want to do that, you would be a success at it, because I see a lot of qualities in your that would really equip you to do that. It’s encouraging them to do something that they need a little more courage to do. Or it can be words of praise, where you’re praising them for something they have done. So, you know, I use the word dialect in trying to communicate that within each of these languages, there are different ways and nuances of expressing them. You know, it’s very similar, Jason, to spoken language. Everyone grows up speaking a language with dialect. I grew up speaking English, southern style, okay?
JASON HARTMAN: And we can hear it. Yeah.
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: You can hear it, yeah. But everyone grows up speaking a language and a dialect, and that’s the one you understand best. And the same thing is true with love.
JASON HARTMAN: No question about it. Of the Five Languages, are certain of the five easier to learn than others?
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: I think not necessarily across the board, but for an individual, one of them might be more difficult than the others. If you never received quality time growing up—your parents never really spent any one-on-one time with you; you were just part of the family, you were lost in the crowd, they were focused on themselves—then sitting down and having an in-depth conversation with somebody may be difficult for you, because you didn’t grow up having those kinds of conversations. So, it would be more difficult for you. Whereas another person, if they got a lot of quality time, it’s natural for them. It’s not difficult for them. So, it depends on the individual as to which of these you might find to be more difficult to speak. But the good news is, you can learn to speak any one of the five.
JASON HARTMAN: What would you say is—and I certainly don’t mean this in any sort of non-appreciative way when I say this. But, this seems pretty simple, really. I mean, what’s the big aha about it? Is it just one of these things that’s so beautifully simple, but just needs to be practiced? I mean, not everything great in life is complicated. Or is there sort of a big aha here, in this book, and in your work in general, that’s a real take home you want to make sure people get?
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Well Jason, I think you’re exactly right. It’s a very simple concept. But when you practice it—that is, when you discover the person’s Love Language, you start speaking it on a regular basis, they discover your language, start speaking it on a regular basis—it radically changes the emotional climate of the relationship. Almost every Saturday when I do marriage seminars, I’ll have half a dozen couples come up and say, we just wanted to tell you that we were having real struggles in our marriage, someone gave us your book on the Five Love Languages, it actually saved our marriage. It really makes the difference, because we all need to feel loved. And especially in the early stages of a marriage, we are loving each other. I mean, we’re making real efforts to reach out to each other. But we’re not always connecting. And when we spend our energy speaking the right language, we connect. So it’s a simple concept. It doesn’t help you if you don’t apply it. But if you apply it, it really changed the emotional climate of a relationship.
JASON HARTMAN: Talking just for a moment here about some more of the nuances as we were, are certain stereotypes affecting people’s ability to implement any of the Five Language? For example, acts of service. Speaking acts of services. Are there stereotypes that people filter things through that make that difficult for them?
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: I think that may be true, Jason. For example, a man said to me, after he had read the book, and he discovered that his wife’s language was acts of service, he said to me, I found out that her language is acts of service. And she wants me to wash the dishes and vacuum floors and take out the garbage, and he told a couple of other things. He said, I’ll just be honest with you. He said, if it’s gonna take that for her to feel loved, you can forget it. Now, you understand what he was saying. I’ve got the information, I hear what you’re saying, but I’m not gonna do that. Now, it may well be that stereotypes of what men are supposed to do and women are supposed to do was behind that statement. Maybe he grew up in a home where his father did not vacuum floors, his father did not wash dishes, his father did not take out garbage, and he communicated to that son wither verbally or by his model that men don’t do those things. So, he may have been influenced by a stereotype of what the male is supposed to do, and that may have been behind his decision. I don’t know, there may have been other issues as well. But yeah, I do think that there are certain stereotypes that people may have as to what men do and women do that may kind of hinder them from moving down the road to express love in that language.
JASON HARTMAN: You have been writing for a long time, and you’ve just got a giant body of work. Tell us about some of your other work. I mean, as I look at your list of titles, it is pretty comprehensive here. You’ve got a lot of work, Gary! Talk about some of your other works, if you would.
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Well, one of the books I wrote was on anger, and it’s another one of my very popular books, because I think a lot of people misunderstand anger, and they don’t know how to handle anger, and they simply operate on the model that they had in their mom and dad. If their dad yelled and screamed in anger, then he probably is going to yell and scream in anger. If his mother in anger would clam up and walk away and not say anything and not discuss whatever stimulated the anger, then that’s probably what she’s going to do, or he’s going to do. So, we all grew up with a model of how our parents handled anger. And let’s face it—we don’t get a whole lot of training in our culture on how to handle anger. We see a lot of mismanaged anger.
JASON HARTMAN: We see a lot of bad examples, that’s exactly what I was going to say. Especially on television.
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Yeah, absolutely. So that book has been very, very popular, where I talk about the origin of anger. Why do we get angry? I think it’s because we have a sense of right. All of us have a sense of right, that people shouldn’t do that, people shouldn’t do this. And whenever we’re treated wrongly or unfairly in our minds, then we experience anger. Anger is the response to being treated wrongly or unfairly. And then, you know, we don’t—in the book, I deal with techniques on how to slow down the process of response. Don’t simply do the first thing that comes to your mind. My mother told me growing up that when you get angry, count to 10 before you do anything.
JASON HARTMAN: Yeah, take a deep breath, or whatever. Right.
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Yeah, good advice. Only I would suggest you count to 100 or 1000, you know. You need a little more time to cool down. In fact, one lady told me, she said, what I do when I get angry, I go water my flowers until I cool down. She said, the first summer I tried that, I almost drowned my petunias. So, you know. But learning how to process anger in a positive way. And the flip side of that I also deal with in the book is how to respond to an angry person. You know, it may be your teenager, it may be your next door neighbor, it may be your spouse, it may be your boyfriend or girlfriend, who’s angry and they’re coming at you, you know, in a rather harsh way, and a loud way, perhaps. How do you respond to them? See, the typical response is that we respond in a similar way. We mirror their behavior. If they’re yelling at us, we start yelling at them. But I deal with a pattern of, the first step is you listen. No matter how they’re delivering the message, you listen to what they’re saying. The second step is, you listen. Because you didn’t get it all the first time.
JASON HARTMAN: Yeah, listen twice.
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: So, I think I hear you saying you’re mad because dah dah dah, and they say, well, that’s part of it, you know. And the third step is, you listen. So, you listen three times. At least three times. Before you say anything. And then you say to them something similar to, you know, I think I understand what you’re saying, and if I were in your shoes, I’m sure I would be angry too. Wow. You’re no longer their enemy. You’re now their friend. You know?
JASON HARTMAN: That’s a pretty defusing statement. I mean, you know, it’s hard to remain upset if someone says that to you.
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Yeah. So anyway. That book has been very very popular. And—oh, another book is called the Four Seasons of Marriage.
JASON HARTMAN: I was just going to ask you about that one. I’m particularly interested in some of the bullet points on that. The unique characteristics found in each season, seven strategies for making the most of each season—tell us more about that one.
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Well, it’s not the idea that most people think, when I say the four seasons they think okay, you get married in spring, and if you live long enough, you’ll get to winter. But what I do is, I use the seasons to describe the quality of the marriage. A winter marriage, it’s very cold. We’re isolated, we’re like an igloo. And there’s either no communication, or it’s very harsh communication. We speak of bitter winters, or harsh winters. A summer marriage is relaxed. It’s laid back. You’ve learned how to resolve conflicts, you’ve learned how to accept some things about each other that you don’t particularly like, but you know they’re not going to change, so you accept them. And summer marriages are people that go to marriage seminars, they read books on marriage, they know you have to continue to water the flowers if you want the marriage to continue to bloom. And then the fall marriage—if you’re in North Carolina in the fall, it’s beautiful. The leaves are all colors—it’s incredibly beautiful. But the reality is, in about six weeks, the leaves are going to fall off the trees.
JASON HARTMAN: And it’s getting cold.
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Yeah. So in a fall marriage, it looks good on the outside. People would say, isn’t that a nice couple? But we know that things aren’t going well. And if we don’t do something, the leaves are going to fall off. And everybody’s gonna know that we’re not doing well. So after I describe that, and help people locate where they are—and it’s not atypical that a wife would say, we’re in winter, and husband would say, we’re in spring, or fall. They have different perceptions on where they are. But then I deal with seven strategies for spending more time in spring and summer. And one of those first strategies is being willing to deal with past failures, and to be honest and say, you know, to be honest with you, I haven’t done a good job. And I know that our relationship is not what it should be, and I know that a lot of it is my fault. And here’s some things that I really—that I know specifically where I have failed. And I really would like to ask if you would be open to forgiving me, and then help me learn how I can be a better partner in this relationship. And I give some other strategies. But the book has been very helpful. In fact, I’ve had a lot of people say to me, two of your books changed our marriage. One was the Five Love Languages, and the other was the Four Seasons of Marriage.
JASON HARTMAN: And I tell you, Gary, of course you’ve probably seen many of your reviews. Not all of them. But if you look on Amazon, any of the listeners, and see the reviews, there are all kinds of people saying that your books have saved their marriage, and just helped them grow in their relationships and so forth. So just, congratulations on such an impactful body of work that you have, with all of this. You mentioned earlier that someone can take a little quiz to discover their primary Love Language, and maybe that of their spouse as well, or their significant other. Where can they do that? Do you have that on your website?
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Yes. www.FiveLoveLanguages.com. You can spell out the word Five, or you can put in the number 5. www.5LoveLanguages.com. And you can take that quiz. There’s no charge, it’s a free quiz. It can be a good communication tool. If you take it, you challenge your spouse to take it, or your significant other to take it, and then the two of you sit down and share with each other how it turned out, and talk about whether you agree with it or not, you know? It’s possible you might disagree with the quiz. But at least it will give you a starting point to open this topic and discuss it with the other person.
JASON HARTMAN: Fantastic. Would else would you like the listeners to know, just in wrapping things up?
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: I think for singles I’d like to say what I said earlier, and that is, now is the time to prepare for a good marriage. You may not even be dating. Or maybe you just started dating two months ago. Or maybe you’re even thinking about getting married. But wherever you are in the journey, this is the time to be preparing for marriage. And I really think you would find some practical help in my book, things I wish I’d known before I got married. I think, Jason, if a couple would go through that book, read the chapters, discuss the issues with each other, they’re gonna be better prepared than 90% of the couples are when they go into marriage. And if you’re already married, and have not read the Five Love Languages, I would really, really encourage you to read the Five Love Languages. I think today we’ve given them the core idea, but as you read it, and get all the illustrations, the real life illustrations, I think you’ll be able to get hold of it, go home, discuss it with your spouse, or if you’re in a dating relationship, discuss it with them. And I think you’re gonna find that that’s gonna be very very helpful in all of your relationships.
JASON HARTMAN: Excellent. Dr. Gary Chapman, thank you so much for joining us today. Appreciate the insights, and keep up the good work at www.GaryChapman.org, there’s the list of many of your books, and there are quite a lot of them. So, many subjects we didn’t have time to discuss today, and there’s a lot more depth there as well, and certainly listeners take that quiz and check it out. And, do you want to mention anything about your live events?
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Yeah, they can find those at www.5LoveLanguages.com, and they can even register online as well. And I would just mention this, Jason. I have a new book coming out that takes this Love Language concept to the workplace. It’s called the Five Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace, and I wrote it with Dr. Paul White, a psychologist, and we think that book’s gonna do for the workplace relationships what the Five Love Languages has done for marriage relationships. I’m really excited about that one.
JASON HARTMAN: Yeah, that’s great, and with the tough economy we have nowadays, I think that’ll be very helpful for people in their business and work life as well. Well, Gary Chapman, again, thank you so much, appreciate having you on the show today!
DR. GARY CHAPMAN: Thanks, Jason. Good to be with you, appreciate what you’re doing.
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