I've tried to blog about love a handful of times but I always get daunted by the enormity of it, the vastness of the human heart, the immeasurable nature of LOVE.
How could I possibly distil it down to 900 words?!
That wouldn't even fit a single chapter of my heart–story; an epic novel that has no beginning or ending, just an endless flow of experiences that have branded my understanding of love.
And then there's the issue of my unconventional view of relationships. My extreme need for freedom pushing against the boundaries that most people crave. This heart does not fit in a box, it is a multidimensional kaleidoscope of light beams that cannot be contained or broken, cracked open aplenty but not broken.
And what about the armour we all inevitably acquire, to guard our precious hearts; petrifying our love, fossilizing our most delicate organ, locking ourselves in time. A great defence mechanism in extreme circumstances but if left unchecked that armour can lead to a slow painful death full of bitterness and contempt. An armoured heart disconnects you from all the beauty and magnificence of the world – from love.
Peeling back this armour is no fun task. It hurts, exposing the raw wound that created the armour in the first place, causing you to relive the ache all over again. And like all things, the longer it's been in place, the harder it'll be to remove.
But as Leonard Cohen said, "there's a crack in everything, that's how the light gets in". So crack open that heart of yours, over and over again if you have to, no matter how painful, because the light is love.
Which brings me to the topic of today's blog – the biggest misconception about love.
Have you ever tried to love someone who wasn't able to feel it, to 'receive it'? Or how about the reverse, has anyone tried to love you and you didn't feel it? Of course you have, we all have. That's because you cannot 'give' love.
The belief that you can give and receive love is the biggest misconception, and the source of so much pain and suffering; "he didn't love me enough, she smothered me with her love, I need you to love me more, I don't feel like you love me, I wish he loved me better..." these are all expressions of a lack of SELF–LOVE.
Love cannot be possessed, it can only be embodied. Love exists in everything, in every moment, it is omnipresent. We just need to awaken to it, to allow it to flow through us, to open our hearts and feel it radiating throughout our entire being and into the world.
Think back to a time when you felt like someone wasn't loving you enough, or perhaps you feel that way now. What do you think would've/could happen if you chose to focus on loving yourself more, to re-direct that expectation inward?
When did it become someone else's responsibility to make you feel loved? What would your relationships look like if you took 100% responsibility for activating love within yourself?
Don't get me wrong, we all need to be loved. Life is hard at times and having the support and unconditional loving of dear friends, family, and lovers, reminds us that we are not alone, that there are in fact people who understand how we feel and will love us through it.
But it is always up to us to turn on those loving feelings. You could have the most incredible community of people around you, loving you the best way they know how but if you aren't tapped into love, if your heart isn't open, you won't feel it. In fact, you'd probably become dependent/addicted to their affirmations of love for you, equating their feelings of love with your sense of self-worth. Perhaps even believing that you would be nothing without them. That kind of attachment comes from a lack of self–love.
Love is an energy, it's fluid, like a river. Our bodies are like the earth that the river flows through. The ocean is like Spirit/God/The Universe/The Great Beyond, whatever you want to call it, in this little parable it represents the vastness of everything where we are all connected. Having an open heart allows the river of your love to flow into the vastness of the ocean, connecting you to everything. When you're tapped into this kind of love – the love that is in everything, you are truly free.
So if you feel like you aren't being loved enough, the solution is to love yourself more. It is up to YOU. Always.
From this place of self–love, you will see your world with clear eyes. You will see if the relationships you are in are supporting your best self or hindering you. You will see if the choices you are making have your best interests in mind or are sabotaging your best–laid plans. From a place of self–love you radiate with so much clarity and brilliance that the 'right' people, the people who see you for your inner beauty and magnificence will naturally show up in your life.
All the love you desire is within you.
So love yourself, right now, and practice loving yourself in every moment. Start here. It is the first step and absolutely necessary to actualizing your most fulfilling life.
The life you were born to live starts with you pulling back the armour of your heart, risking everything, baring all, it is from that scary vulnerable place that you will be met with authenticity, truth, and the most divine love you can imagine.
Now, I realize that if you haven't cracked open your heart yet, it can seem like an impossible task. Where and how do you start?
Tenderness my dears, start with being kind to yourself. Whatever that looks like. Be gentle, be sweet. Run yourself a bath, put some love into it. Sit in stillness, look inward, and breathe. Then ask yourself what lights you up, what do you love? Then go do/be/create those things. Because when you are doing what you love, even if only for an hour a day, you will remember the Truth of who you are, you will be reminded of your essence, which is LOVE.
This world needs you, all of you, just as you are. You are loved beyond measure, and that love resides within you. I promise.