Have you ever been in love? Well, I have, countless times. And has your heart ever been broken? Yeah, hurts, doesn’t it? I know, I’ve been there too. Not just because someone I’d fallen in love with didn’t feel the same for me. Mostly, it was over unfulfilling relationships – not just romantic ones – and difficult situations I’d gotten myself into, in which I constantly adapted to other people. It boiled down to living life according to other people’s desires instead of my own.
Listen to what other people said
In hindsight, I realize this came from a natural capacity for compassion and an innate, subconscious tendency to adapt to people and situations. When making decisions, I would listen to what other people said and, more importantly, to what they weren’t saying but clearly emanating, instead of listening to what I wanted or felt. For instance, if I felt like having a pizza and the person I was with wanted fish and chips, I would seriously consider going to the chippie if this person made a drama out of it, even if I didn’t really want to. This is an example of a simple and relatively harmless situation, still, the principle behind it applied to everything in my life – the most important things included.
Look at my reflection in the mirror
Anyway, there’s a good side to everything. The older I got, the more aware I became of my harmful behaviour. It gave me insights into myself. My true self, that is. More and more, I became aware of what I wanted and placed my interests before the interests of others. Not that I became egocentric. Not at all. I was taking better care of myself. Or as my mother put it to me when I was going through a rough patch: “You need to love yourself first. Only when you truly love yourself, will you be able to truly love someone else.” As tears welled up in my eyes, it dawned on me how unloving I had been towards myself. Yet again, I was made to look at my reflection in the proverbial mirror, and for once, the person I saw made me smile with joy.
My own doing
This was about a year ago, and now I know better. I know that all the heartbreak in the past was my own doing. This has taught me to listen to my heart. Every time I listen to what my heart – my intuition – tells me, I experience a deep sense of faith. I know that I only need to pay attention to what my heart longs for and I will always feel good about myself, and, in the process, about other people. Listening to my heart means doing right by myself. It is a sort of homecoming, coming home to myself.
U2 – A Sort Of Homecoming
The power to create my own life
I no longer blame others for doing things I don’t really want to do or for having unpleasant experiences. Instead, I learn from unfortunate choices and feel within what I will choose next time, in order to experience something that pleases me. Also, I see the telltale signs of self-neglect and self-criticism that tempt me to leave my own path. That enables me to be kind, loving and supportive towards myself. And that feels absolutely fantastic. This mature and responsible approach gives me tremendous self-control. I have the power to create my own life. What I experience doesn’t depend on other people, and it isn’t about controlling them or being controlled by them either.
Fall in love with life
The unselfish thing about this is that I love myself more and so do the people around me. They also begin to love themselves more. I feel this is changing the world into a far more loving place where disappointment and pain make way for fulfilment and joy. Anyway, I no longer fall in love with others but with myself and with life and all its beauty. I wish the same to you as well. For now, I wish you a happy Valentine’s Day and pass on to you in my own words my mother’s advice: Whatever you do, love yourself first.
Thank you Mum! I love you X
George Benson – The Greatest Love Of All
P.S. Would you like to love yourself more and create the life of your dreams. Follow the Heb Lef Heb Jezelf Lief training course.
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