Reinvent the relationships you have in your life and feel all the love and support that comes from great relationships!
Everything is a perfect mirror in your life. Everyone you choose to have in your life is showing you some very important things about yourself, should you choose to notice them. Which can be absolutely maddening, especially if we feel frustrated, hurt, wounded, or abandoned by someone.
Yet, if we can cultivate true, loving awareness in those moments, we can see a part of ourselves in the other person we are triggered by. There’s a theory that the things we get triggered by in our closest relationships are showing us the deepest, unresolved parts of ourselves that need more love, attention, acceptance, and healing. Truly, I think our relationships can be our greatest teachers.
As little children, we intuitively knew how to love unconditionally. How to open our hearts and our circles of compassion to all beings, regardless of their race, skin color, religion, ethnicity, sexuality, economic class, gender, or species.
Somewhere along the way, however, we gradually lose this natural, innate ability to accept and love others unconditionally.
Through no fault of our own, we started to observe our parents, teachers, society, and the media—who showed us their definition of “love.” Most of these definitions are not love at all; they’re conditional affection.
Conditional affection is when you say that you love someone, but the truth is that the moment they do something you don’t like, you don’t approve of, you don’t expect, or you don’t condone, you say, “I don’t love you anymore.”
This isn’t real love. It’s lip service. It’s the illusion that music, movies, and the media have fed us about what THEY think love should be.
It’s conditional. It’s limited. It has no foundation of acceptance. It’s the exact opposite of love, in fact, because its foundation is fear.
The moment you judge, disapprove, or hate someone else, love goes right out the window, doesn’t it? Can you see how completely insane this behavior is?
We claim to love someone deeply, yet the moment things don’t go the way we want them to, we withdraw our affections from them. Expectations, assumptions, and demands are all pure illusions.
They have no connection to reality at all. This is very tricky in relationships because we allow ourselves to be so vulnerable. We share our innermost desires, fears, heartbreaks, and hopes with another person.
It’s easy to allow our minds and hearts to buy into the expectation that our love, our focus, our commitment, and care will be reciprocated. But this is a dangerous trap we lay for ourselves because we cannot know how a person will respond to our energy. We have no idea what the next moment will bring or if someone will change their mind about how they feel.
Being in a sane relationship means that we are clear that NOTHING is guaranteed and we have the choice to show up fully, unconditionally loving in full acceptance of ourselves and full acceptance of the other person.
The reality is that unconditional love is the true nature of our Being. We knew it and experienced it fully as small children, and our ability to cultivate it, practice it, and experience it has not been lost.
It’s just going to require a LOT of unlearning, a lot of patience, a lot of compassion, and a lot of letting go. The more we can let go of our expectations, our assumptions, and ideas about how things “should be,” the more we let go of trying to control our loved ones and of trying to hold on to the past or our attachments of the future. This allows us to be freer, more loving, and more open.
This is some of the most challenging and often painful work we can do for ourselves.
Yet, your willingness to go into the dark cave uncovers the greatest treasures of our lives.
We must learn to let go. We must learn to accept what is.
We must learn to love unconditionally and without expectation or demands.
The result is a state of Being that can heal our hearts, heal our relationships, and ultimately, heal our planet.
Superhero Action Step!
Ask yourself where you are holding back the love in your life: from yourself or your loved ones. If you are withholding your love, ask yourself why.
It is because you’re afraid of being hurt, being seen or being truly vulnerable?
Are you afraid of your love not being returned or reciprocated to you?
Is it because you are in judgment and haven’t accepted yourself fully?
Identify the roadblocks you have placed between you and unconditional love and then work to dissolve them. You can dissolve them through radical acceptance of what is: letting go of expectations, assumptions, and demands, and working to heal your pain, trauma and fear (I recommend a therapist or coach to support you with this!)
And remember this: your heart and mind–once opened–can never return to their original dimensions.
Keep opening, my beautiful friend. You’ve got this!