"Words of Affirmation" by Courtney Vallejo (CatholicMom.com) Copyright 2017 Courtney Vallejo. All rights reserved.

How many of you have heard of The Five Love Languages? If you’re familiar with it, it’s a self-assessment where you determine how you prefer to receive love. Do you prefer words of affirmation, quality time, acts of service, gifts, or physical touch? Many of us can receive love in a variety of ways, and that can also depend on who is giving the love. For me, I am a quality time and acts of service lover. I would venture to say that if you wanted to fill up my cup, trying one of those would be the best bet, but as I’ve done some more self-exploration I realized maybe I’m not being entirely honest with myself.

Before becoming a mom, I worked in a variety of positions, secretary at a variety of places, personal assistant, and finally teacher. What I noticed across the board, was that words of affirmation really motivated me to continue in my jobs and to seek ways to be better in each of them. I wanted to think I was confident enough and that I didn’t need people telling me how great I was, but I don’t think that’s really the case. When I became a mom, I struggled with feeling fulfilled and after exploring those feelings I realized there was a link to not hearing how great I was at my job or how grateful someone was for the ways I had helped them. I know it’s hard to believe but my children weren’t always saying thank you every time I made them a snack of folded their laundry. In fact, when they were toddlers, I spent most of my time teaching them to say thank you. When anyone says thank you because they were encouraged to do it, it doesn’t hold the same meaning as a genuine thank you.

[tweet "Is our fulfillment in affirmation, or in God alone?"]

Ultimately I should be finding my fulfillment in God alone. It shouldn’t matter if anyone says anything to affirm me throughout the day. Unfortunately, I’m still learning that concept and I still seek fulfillment through people and things. What I’m working on now is finding ways to feel fulfilled. I have started homeschooling my kids, and although no one is congratulating me on my great lesson planning, I know that I taught my son to read. I find fulfillment in checking off our to do list of lessons each day. I also find fulfillment when my children are out in public and randomly associate something to what we’ve learned in a lesson.

I’m learning that in each season of my life my fulfillment will change, and that proves to me even more, that my desires are fleeting and true fulfillment can only be found in God. He is the only consistent in my life.

What brings you fulfillment in your life? How do you work to find your fulfillment in God?

Copyright 2017 Courtney Vallejo