Ever feel like Cupid’s arrow has flown over your shoulder? When that feeling takes over, it’s easy to forget that we’re here to love. If we can make the decision to choose love, both with people who are easy to love and those who challenge us, our hearts are set free.
Since we learn so much about who we are by being in relationship, losing sight that we are here to connect means losing touch with ourselves. The next time you are in need a reminder, try one of these heart-centered mantras to guide you back.
1) Go where the love is.
In most relationships there is a dance in which a pursuer chases a distancer. I should know. For a chunk of my life I played the pursuing role, reaching and wanting for what wasn’t there. It’s not that others didn’t love me; they just had different needs. Once I understood this, I was free to love others without blame or shame. I stopped wasting energy trying to convince people of my worth and started surrounding myself with reciprocity. If this sounds familiar, don’t beat your head against closed doors. Give yourself permission to turn around and go where the love is.
2) Celebrate what others love.
My son builds giant Lego towers for the sheer pleasure of destroying them. When I applaud the annihilation, he lights up. Granted, it’s easy to praise a toddler. Their skills are not a threat to our self-esteem. As they get older we do this less, though their need is the same. One look at social media reveals this truth. People love to be celebrated and by celebrating what others love, we enter another world which naturally widens our own. Taking joy in others is the ultimate beta blocker to jealousy. Try it as an experiment and observe what happens. You might discover a new source of happiness.
3) Let them know they are loved.
There are many ways to express love, but the one I find most compelling is undivided attention. Being listened to reminds us how much our lives matter and that’s why it is an act of love. When my husband pushes himself away from the computer and turns toward me to listen, he’s letting me know that I’m loved. It’s as simple as that. So the next time you’re talking with someone watch the familiar impulse to fix, soothe or interject your thoughts. Instead, park a smile on your face, ask questions and create space for the answer. Then sit back and enjoy the experience.