How To Speak The Quality Time Love Language, According To Men

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couple smiling in bed with each other

One of the greatest self-helps books of our time is Dr. Gary Chapman's "The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate."

According to Dr. Chapman, the 5 love languages are: words of affirmation, quality time, giving gifts, acts of service, and physical touch.

Understanding how to speak someone's quality time love language can be confusing for those to whom it doesn't come naturally. While a love language like receiving gifts is more easy to decipher, partners may have some difficulty understanding their partner’s love language, especially when it's quality time.

In order for a person whose love language is quality time to feel loved, appreciated and valued, it's not only important that two of you spend time together, but that you spend that time in constructive ways that help you grow as a couple and learn more about one other on an ongoing basis.

RELATED: How To Prove Your Love Every Single Day, Based On The Five Love Languages

What is considered quality time?

Quality time is the time you spend with the person you love most: your partner. It’s not about what you’re doing, exactly, just that you’re spending time with one another.

Quality time means giving your complete, undivided attention to your partner, making sure you aren’t distracted by other responsibilities or circumstances. The purpose is to spend time together, not just physically but emotionally as well.

While people have different understandings of this love language, they may not fully grasp the true meaning. So, what are examples of quality time? Quality time doesn’t necessarily mean sitting together on the couch and snuggling; rather, couples should do activities together that bring them closer together.

For example, you can spend quality time cooking together, starting and completing a DIY project around the house, putting together a puzzle or playing a board game, going on a walk, or even seeing a movie. It's kind of like having your own little date night!

Not every couple is lucky enough to be together for certain periods of time, especially if they travel for business or work long hours. But why is quality time important, other than seeing your partner?

When you’ve been together for a long time, it can be difficult to set aside time that isn’t already dedicated to everyday life — your job, the kids, or your extended family. But quality time is important because it gives couples a chance to stay connected, even when the hustle and bustle of daily life gets in the way.

Quality time helps couples improve communication, add a little fun to everyday life, remove stress, and remember the commitment you made to each other.

How do you show love through quality time?

Whether quality time is your love language or your partner’s, it doesn’t just involve being present; it’s making sure you cut out time for them, regardless of what other things life throws your way.

Showing love through quality time involves listening to what your partner has to say without interjecting or interrupting. It’s a good opportunity to ask them questions about how they are doing, if there’s anything you can help with, and to show that you truly do care about their well-being.

Another way to show love and affection through quality time is to stay in the moment with them. Don’t be distracted by technology (you can answer your work emails later!) and, instead, focus on the here and now. You’re with your partner, so they should be priority at that moment.

It’s also important to think about what you’re doing together during quality time. Rather than sitting at the dinner table talking about your humdrum day, have a conversation about the things that matter most, to both of you. There will be plenty of time to talk about things like getting the kids to school or cleaning the bathroom.

Knowing what your partner wants doesn’t come easily to everyone, so how do you show love to a quality time person, or a partner who has quality time as their primary love language?

If your partner’s love language is quality time but yours isn’t, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make an effort to understand how they express and desire love. Showing love to a quality time person means giving them your full attention, yes, but it also means adding “quality” to your time together.

Be sure to make plans to do something they would enjoy; or, even if you are doing something they may not be interested in, ask them if they would like to come along. After all, it doesn’t always matter what kind of activity you do together, as long as you are together.

Show love by also planning activities that don’t require complete focus, like water skiing or watching a thought-provoking movie. This way, your attention can be on each other, not the task at hand.

Above all, be sure quality time is a regular thing! Make it part of your routine or carve out small amounts of time to spend together. Maybe your weekdays are busy, but you have free time on Sundays; in that case, perhaps spend the morning going on a leisurely walk around the neighborhood or make breakfast in your pajamas.

What is quality time in a relationship, as opposed to quality time with other people you know?

While you can spend quality time with your family, friends or even coworkers, quality time in a relationship is a bit different. When you get caught up in your job, your pets, or just making sure your home is running smoothly, you neglect the most important person in your life.

Quality time in a relationship is meant to bring couples back together, providing reassurance that the love is still there, and reminding them why they are in a relationship or married in the first place. It’s important to put the same amount of effort into this as you did when you were first dating.

If quality time is your boyfriend or husband's primary love language, it's important to understand quality time really means to him. Believe it or not, for men who speak this love language, there's a wide variety of things they may be more or less interested in doing when they spend time with you.

One of the best ways to find out what men think and feel is by taking a peek at r/AskMen on Reddit. It was particularly helpful to see how men responded when a redditor asked this question: "What is your love language? How can your partner best show their love through it?"

RELATED: How Learning My Partner's Love Language Saved My Relationship

The answers men gave can offer you a better sense of what ranks highest for guys with the quality time love language, or have a partner with this love language.

What Men Think Spending Quality Time Together Means

1. Quality time is about making each other a top priority.

"Time is a precious commodity with there never being enough in the day to do everything I want. For me to make the time to spend with someone or for them to make the time to spend with me, it's a big deal, no matter what we do with that time."

2. Quality time pairs especially well with physical touch.

"Quality time, when in context of physical touch, is a no-brainer. The fact that she wants to spend time with me just gets me giddy."

3. Quality is best spent experiencing new things and having fun together.

"I love to do fun things with my girlfriend. Like, have new experiences together. I would love to learn to cook a new dish together, take dance classes together, travel to Spain together, and just talk to each other while focusing on each other, no distractions."

4. Quality time is about focusing on him.

"Just make time and want to be around me, with all her focus on me."

5. Quality time shows you care.

"Quality time is tied with physical touch. And the easiest way to show you care is to spend time with me."

6. Quality time is all about attention.

"Cuddles, pats and a bit of attention. Super simple!"

7. Quality time should happen often, no matter how you spend it.

"Don't be out with your friends or at your parents all the time. My last ex was at her parents at least once a week, and got annoyed that I would only go sometimes. I like your family and all, but I don't need to see them once a week, just like I knew she would have absolutely put her foot down and said no if I asked her to go see my mom every single Saturday. It's our day off, so how about we just snuggle on the couch and watch some TV or a movie? Who only wants one single day/week with their partner?"

8. Quality time is all about being in the moment.

"You should never get so caught up with making future plans that you forget the importance of the moment. Right now is solid and real. Tomorrow is less certain. Every one who dies always has a list of things they were going to do eventually, and I'm sure I will, too. My goal is to make the list I leave behind the last in a chain of completed adventures."

9. Quality time matters more than money.

"I'm partnered with an amazing woman, making well less than half what I did before, but it's a lifestyle that leaves me with extra cash every check, a growing savings, more time for my children, and an entire focus on quality. When people approach me for work or consulting, I quote a very high figure. It makes them walk away because they don't want to pay what my quality time is worth. When I don't like a job and it's invading inappropriately on my quality time, I quit and find a new one."

10. Quality time is best spent at home together.

"I would much rather spend the night in with my girlfriend than stay late at work making overtime pay. Advancing my career works in tandem with my relationship and not ahead of it."

11. Quality time doesn't always require words.

"Try sitting on a bench, just enjoying the air, wind, smells... no words necessary. Or, eat a meal without a word. It's not awkward, and if you try it it's really not. You can experience the sound of surroundings, communicate just by smiles and eye expressions. It really builds a connection when you don't have to verbally comment on everything."

12. Quality time is especially great for homebodies.

"I dated a woman that would sit in the same room as me and work on her computer, and I'd work on mine. And every now and then I'd get up to refill my drink, wrap my arms around her, give her a big hug and kiss, and then go refill and come back, slide my hand across her shoulders on the way back, and everyone was happy. Seven hours of that, we've said five words, verbally. I could be around her all day almost every day and not get drained."

13. Quality time is a great opportunity to discover new things together.

"We started going to bad movies at the dollar cinema and making fun of them together. We also discovered adult night at the science museum where it was social and interactive, which she enjoyed, but I also got to teach someone about science, which satisfied me."

14. Quality time doesn't have to cost you anything.

"We lay on the floor and eat chips, and talk about all sorts of stuff, big and small."

15. Quality time doesn't always have to be spent in person.

"I text my girlfriend every morning we are apart and call her every day as I'm leaving work so we can chat on my drive home."

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Rebecca Jane Stokes is a writer, podcaster and former Senior Editor of Pop Culture at Newsweek.