“Most of us never learn to love at all. We play at love, imitate lovers, treat love as a game. Is it any wonder so many of us are dying of loneliness, feel anxious and unfulfilled, even in seemingly close relationships, and are always looking elsewhere for something more which we feel must certainly be there? “Is that all there is?” the song asks.
There is something else. It’s simply this — the limitless potential of love within each person eager to be recognized, waiting to be developed, learning to grow.
It’s never too late to learn anything for which you have a potential. If you want to learn to love, then you must start the process of finding out what it is, what qualities make up a loving person and how these are developed. Each person has the potential for love. But the potential is never realized without work. This does not mean pain. Love, especially, is learned best in wonder, in joy, in peace, in living.” ~ Leo Buscaglia
We live in a world where most of us aren’t taught about the value and importance of love. We aren’t taught about the importance of loving ourselves before expecting to receive love from anyone else. And because of that, we run around like mad people, looking for love and approval in all the wrong places, begging from others for the many things we think are missing from ourselves and doing all kind of meaningless things that we think will bring more happiness and meaning into our lives.
The way I see it, this is one of the main reasons why so many people have low self-esteem; why so many people enter and stay in relationships that are unhealthy and toxic to them; why so many people stay in jobs that they hate, and why this world is full of so much sadness, loneliness, and unhappiness.
Love is the answer to all of our questions. It’s love that gives meaning to our lives, and if there’s no love in our hearts – no love for self and no acceptance for who we truly are, there will be no peace in our lives, no life, no purpose and no meaning.
“To love yourself right now, just as you are, is to give yourself heaven. Don’t wait until you die. If you wait, you die now. If you love, you live now.” ~ Alan Cohen
There is so much love within each and every one of us, so much beauty and so much power. The limitless potential of love within us is eager to be recognized, waiting to be developed. But if we continue to look for love outside ourselves – in things, places, other people, food, drugs and alcohol, and if we continue to entertain all kind of thoughts about us not being enough – beautiful enough, good enough, smart enough, etc., we will never be able to develop, grow and experience this love.
“Loving yourself…does not mean being self-absorbed or narcissistic, or disregarding others. Rather it means welcoming yourself as the most honored guest in your own heart, a guest worthy of respect, a lovable companion.” ~ Margo Anand
You can only give to others as much as you give to yourself, and if you yourself are empty on the inside, lacking self-love and self-confidence, you will not be able to give anything worth having to your family, to your friends and to the world around you. For how can you pour real love into your environment, into your work, your relationships and your life when there’s nothing inside of you to give? How can you teach your children about love when through your actions and behavior you prove to them that you have little or no love for yourself? How can you expect your partner to love and adore you, to accept all parts of you, when you yourself don’t even think you’re worthy and deserving of love?
This isn’t how things work. This isn’t how love can be felt and known. If you want to receive something from outside yourself, you must first learn how to offer those things to yourself. Because if you don’t, the world will continue to treat you the way you yourself treat yourself, and no matter how much love you will get from others, it will never fulfill you, and it will never make you feel whole, peaceful and complete.
7 Things You Need to Learn about Love
Dedicate your life to love. Learn how to make peace with all that you are. Give to yourself as much as you would want the world to give to you. Learn to love, accept, embrace and make peace with all that you are. Accept yourself with all your flaws, all your weakness, and all your perfect imperfections. And know that only by learning how to love yourself you will be able to truly love the world around you.
Here are 7 things you need to learn about love, things that will help bring a lot of clarity into your life and a lot of peace into your heart. All 7 belong to Leo Buscaglia:
1. You cannot give what you do not possess.
One cannot give what he does not possess. To give love you must possess love.
2. You cannot teach what you do not understand.
One cannot teach what he does not understand. To teach love you must comprehend love.
3. You cannot know what you do not study.
One cannot know what he does not study. To study love you must live in love.
4. You cannot appreciate what you do not recognize.
One cannot appreciate what he does not recognize. To recognize love you must be receptive to love.
5. You cannot have doubt about that which you wish to trust.
One cannot have doubt about that which he wishes to trust. To trust love you must be convinced of love.
6. You cannot admit what you do not yield to.
One cannot admit what he does not yield to. To yield to love you must be vulnerable to love.
7. You cannot love what you do not dedicate yourself to.
One cannot love what he does not dedicate himself to. To dedicate yourself to love you must be forever growing in love.