I recently came across a box with some of my writing in it from the last thirty or so years. I rather enjoyed seeing the changes in style and outlook that I’ve made overtime.
Amongst the papers, I found an old essay I had written back in high school for an assignment entitled “The Mystical Thing Called Love.”
I imagine many of the papers submitted for that task were fraught with drama and the reelings of teenage romance and angst.
I wrote back then:
“When you realise someone else has a strong hold over your heart, fear kicks in.”
“Be yourself. Living your life at a never-ending masquerade ball, will never lead to happiness. The ball will have to end sometime, and you could be left standing alone, glass slippers in hand.”
“Should you ever decide you are truly ready, jump in with both feet. You will probably make some mistakes, but working together you will develop an understanding; a bond based on experience, honesty, and trust. Bask in its glory. Remember how lucky you are to have found something strong and lasting. There are many who never do.”
Much of the rest of it was the drivel of an inexperienced school girl. Reading it over now, I was amused to see the youthful folly of suppositions that must have been based on tv sitcoms and the calamity of all I had witnessed in the lives of those around me.
And despite that I had listed it as a potential side effect at the time, I am happy to report that I do NOT believe that the throwing of dishes, pots and pans, or anything other projectile, is an appropriate part of Love of any kind!
I smile to read the note at the bottom left by the student teacher who declared that I was very wise for one so young and that she hoped I didn’t mind that she took the liberty of keeping a copy for herself. I was flattered of course, but all I really cared about then was the big fat “A” at the top of the page. Heaven help that woman if she used it to guide her in matters of love because the rest of it was a bunch of malarkey!
As for the statements above, they are true enough, but you have to be able to let go of fear to Love completely. And that can be a hard thing to do because you’re putting your faith and trust in someone else’s hands. That kind of vulnerability takes great strength. It also means you have to be able to trust yourself.
Some say Love is a risk. I believe you have to do it anyway – no matter what the outcome.
I believe in… “Give it your all.”
If it doesn’t work out, take comfort in the fact that you had the courage to put yourself in it. And then ask yourself, “did you? Was there anything you could have done differently? And learn from it.
Love isn’t about trying to make everything perfect. It isn’t a fairytale, though it sure is amazing when it feels like it is!
And it doesn’t always come easy. Love is overcoming obstacles, facing challenges, holding on and choosing not to let go. Whatever path you walk, remember: it is always a choice.
Love is a commitment – without it, a relationship will not work. Relationships require investment.
Being in a relationship means: “I am there for you. You can count on me.” And those are not meant to be mere words.
And if you’re not willing to back up your words with your actions, you’re not committed. It’s up to you whether you want to let your life be a false advertisement for something that you don’t have in your inventory. You get to choose who you want to be.
If you’re not ready, that’s ok, just be honest about it. Your actions will always speak louder than your words and incongruency between the two can lead to angst, confusion and mistrust.
Most people want the benefits of the relationship with none of the responsibility. I am completely amazed when I hear people who are focused on only what they want and don’t care about what their partner wants or how they feel. You can’t maintain a lop-sided long lasting relationship anymore than you can build and maintain a lopsided house! They both WILL topple without a strong foundation.
If you want a partner, you have to be 100% in it with them.
It’s not 50-50. You BOTH have to give 100%
REMEMBER: You can’t get something out of a relationship that you are not willing to put in yourself.
Love is realizing that every hour, every minute, every second of it was worth it because you came through it together. Love is not just about the good times. Sometimes it’s a walk on the beach, sometimes it’s a roller coaster. It will be whatever kind of adventure you choose to make it.
Oh, there will likely be drama. And most of us only see our partner’s drama and not our own. Remember that what you see in others is a reflection of you.
On the other hand, if you both hold the highest intention of making it work, it can. Decide. The rest is just details.
You have to believe in the WE, not just the ME. And being committed to being in the We does not mean losing yourself to it. On the contrary, when you are committed to each other’s happiness, you want each other to thrive.
One of the biggest challenges with maintaining a healthy relationship is understanding that you each have different needs. One person’s deep love strategy is usually different from their partner’s. What this means is that what it takes for your partner to feel deeply loved, is not likely what it means for you. And this means paying attention and caring enough to make the other person feel safe in the relationship. You want that, don’t you?
We all know that men and women think differently. Give some latitude, ask questions and be clear.
Most of us at times have thought we communicated exactly what we wanted and our partner doesn’t have a clue! If you aren’t specific with your partner, it’s not reasonable to get upset when they don’t know what you want, is it?
Communication is so important in a relationship. Honest and open communication keeps relationships afloat. Learn to listen to each other and recognise each others ways and respect your differences. Their thinking may not make sense to you, but you are not them. They come with their own history, just as you do.
Your reactions to your partner are always about YOU, not them. Have the courage to be honest and find that truth. Always respond with love and compassion. When you respond with anger, do you really think that will help dispel the issue? If you can both look at one another through eyes Love, and listen with ears of kindness and compassion, you can get through anything. You’re there to ease each other, to make life better for each other, so take down those walls and open up. The more you close yourself, the harder it will be. You get to be “right” or you get to be “happy.” And when you choose to focus on happy, you get both.
Love is about intimacy, affection, kindness, compassion and respect in all things. And it takes work, commitment, and the ability to lead each day with an open heart. And really great sex helps too!
The truth is, that romantic Love operates on the same principles as Love does, with a few extra pheromone requirements.
When I first decided to write this post I heard my ego say, “what on Earth do you know about love?”
But the authentic core of me smiled back and whispered. “You do know how to Love. You’ve always known how to Love. Love is the way you live your life. Love is who you are.”
I KNOW this is the Truth. I Love fiercely and gently. And I know that Love is always the answer.
I have always gone about relationships with good intent. But in the past, it was never in a way that honoured me. I did not love myself then, and I just wanted to be loved. I have always accepted people for who they are, and have always compromised who I am just to make it work. In the end, I never got what I needed from the relationship, but I learned to recognise that it was me who never honoured that.
Why did I do it? Why do so many of us do it?
I guess I never thought back then that my wants mattered. I thought they were just the silly dreams of a romantic schoolgirl.
But you know what? They do matter. And yours do too.
And here I am today, still idealistic and romantic, and still believing in wonderful, magical, take your breath away kind of Love – sharing a life with someone and looking forward in the same direction, no matter what comes. I’m in it for ups and downs. It’s those ups and downs and getting through it all that is the beauty of the relationship.
To truly Love another, you have to be able to Love yourself first. You need to see the beauty and magnificence that you are to truly see and accept the beauty and magnificence of another.
“Your task is not to seek for Love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” ~ Rumi
I have learned to be myself, with all that that may mean. Growing. Learning to be open to love even when my thoughts are drifting to fear. I also know that I deserve the same unconditional acceptance that I give.
Love is unconditional. It is about cherishing someone for all that they are not in spite of it.
“Love is a state of being. Love is a place of growing. Love is a way of seeing. Love is a space of knowing. ”
Sometimes you’ll stumble as you learn to honour yourself, and Love is a safehaven to do so. It is a safe place to express your fears, your doubts, and your dreams.
If your relationship doesn’t give you the latitude to become your magnificent self, you might want to take a good, long, hard look at it. True love always adapts and adjusts. You deserve that kind of Love, don’t you?
What is Love to you?
Please share any comments below.
Shelley Lundquist is an international best-selling author, motivational speaker, and Self-Mastery & Success Coach who uses her intuitive gifts and powerful transformational breakthrough processes to empower audiences all over the world in leveraging the unlimited power of their own potential.
By guiding you through a journey of self-discovery and a shift in the way you perceive yourself and the world, Shelley will help you create your best life—a peaceful, harmonious life of joy and abundance, that acknowledges body, mind, and spirit.
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