Open Your Eyes
7. Value the people who are there.
Sometimes we get so caught up looking for romantic love that we forget to appreciate the friends and family who are always there, offering their support. At least I did. Despite my chronic fear of being seen and judged, and my instinct to self-sabotage, I spent a long time believing that I was incomplete.
I know you might be thinking that friendships aren’t the same as romantic affection, and I understand. I felt this way too. But we don’t attract romantic love into our lives by focusing on what’s missing. We attract potential partners by radiating love.
Take an inventory of all the people who care. There are likely far more than you realize.
8. Recognize the love you’re not giving.
It’s far easier to pinpoint what we’re not getting than it is to be honest with ourselves about what we’re not giving. Perhaps you want people to check in with your more frequently. Are you checking in with them? Maybe you want people to ask more about your personal life. Are you asking them about theirs?
Give the type of love you want to receive. Give praise. Notice the little things. Offer help without it being asked of you.
I’m not suggesting you should always be the one giving. If it feels like a constant one-way street, then it might be time to reevaluate that relationship. But in most healthy ones, giving more freely creates an environment of consideration and generosity.
And then of course there’s the other side of this coin: Ask for what you need! There’s one relationship in my life that’s often felt unbalanced. Recently I asked this friend if she’d call me sometimes just to talk, as opposed to calling for advice. I asked, and now she does.
9. Look deeply at your needs and intentions.
Sometimes when we go out looking for love, we’re really trying to avoid giving ourselves what we need. There’s pain in our past we don’t want to acknowledge; or there’s an emptiness inside that we don’t want to fill on our own.
If you’re feeling a hole somewhere inside, take a close look at what might have caused it. Be strong enough to acknowledge what you need to do for you, whether it’s having a long overdue conversation with a family member, working on your self-esteem, or finding a sense of purpose in life.
We all deserve to feel loved by the people in our lives, but first need to be willing and able to love ourselves. That’s what it takes to feel deeply connected: to feel deeply connected to ourselves and confident in what we can give.
Curated by Erbe