Experience

Love Fully

“Where there is love there is life.” Mahatma Gandhi

According to the Merriam Webster Dictionary love is…

images1. Warm attachment, enthusiasm, or devotion

2. The object of attachment, devotion, or admiration

3. The unselfish loyal and benevolent concern for the good of another

4. Is inspired by affection

Love can be expressed in many forms. Whether it is demonstrated through romantic love, familial love, friendship love or simply loving all that is around you, living a life motivated by love can sometimes prove quite challenging. As we move through life we often allow ourselves to become consumed by the realities of our life experiences. Whether we have suffered a loss, experienced a betrayal, or have permitted ourselves to lose faith in love, we learn to let our experiences not only define love for us, but also determine how we will either accept or reject love in our lives.

While a great many people will strive tirelessly for a taste of love in their lifetime, a vast majority of people will seek other things in life to replace love. Be it money, possessions, power or knowledge there are a great many of us whose motivation lie in things other than love. While these desires can all be seen as fair desires to strive for in life they are hollow and temporary fillers for what we know to be necessary in our lives and that’s love.

How can we learn to approach love as something we can both give and receive throughout our lifetime no matter our life experiences? Can we learn to accept love as a choice we each have and deserve to experience? While many of us will attempt to fill the void created when we don’t have love in our lives by seeking other means of happiness and fulfillment, these methods will only serve us temporarily. Love is infinite and everlasting. It will exist when all else fails to fill our heart, mind and spirit. We were all created in love and therefore built to cultivate love both within ourselves as well as within others. Are you ready to live love now?

Let’s practice together.

Love Yourself

“You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.” Buddhaimages-1

It was not until I started to listen to my wants and needs that I  discovered I hadn’t been loving myself enough. It was when I realized that I was finally acknowledging my truth that I felt comfortable enough to love the person I was becoming.  I accepted my desires as worthy of my attention and began to look for ways to receive what my inner voice was trying to tell me. By allowing these truths to emerge I slowly began to understand what it truly means to love oneself.

Loving oneself means accepting and acknowledging that which is true within your body, mind, and spirit. You love yourself when you finally recognize that you are worth love and affection. That you have unique gifts and talents that you long to share rather than shelter from the world.  Through self-reflection and meditation one can learn to reconnect with their inner stirrings. Those desires and wishes that only you know are true and necessary for your life to have meaning and purpose. By creating a space for your creativity and curiosity to shine with love and enthusiasm your desires and ambitions take on a new form. They are no longer associated with feelings of doubt or fear but embraced with love and possibility. Loving oneself means giving love freely to all that is true to you. In order to extend love towards others one must first find love within themselves. Allow for your love to inspire you, support you, and guide you in all your life experiences.  “Something inside you emerges….an innate, indwelling peace, stillness, aliveness. It is the unconditioned, who you are in your essence. It is what you had been looking for in the love object. It is yourself.” Eckhart Tolle

Break Down Your Barriers to Love  Unknown-1

“Your task is not to seek for Love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” Rumi

We live in a world of realities where every action we take influences the realities we experience in life. While a great many of our life decisions are based on a reaction to what we are experiencing in the moment, other decisions can be attributed to past encounters that have impacted us negatively. When it comes to welcoming love into your life one must first admit the barriers to love that exist within themselves. Do you find that you shut people out, push people away, or feel as though you have lost the ability to connect with others through love? If so, it’s about time you reconnect with what’s missing in your life. While it may prove challenging for many to reflect back on a negative experience they encountered with love, this is the first critical  step to letting love back into your life now. We all yearn to be loved but this is only made possible when we let go of the negative and make room for the positives to flourish. Replace your feelings of fear with feelings of excitement and wonder. The potential for love lies in all of us. So look back, let go, and open up to the possibilities. “There are two basic motivating forces: fear and love. When we are afraid, we pull back from life. When we are in love, we open to all that life has to offer with passion, excitement, and acceptance. We need to learn to love ourselves first, in all our glory and our imperfections. If we cannot love ourselves, we cannot fully open to our ability to love others or our potential to create. Evolution and all hopes for a better world rest in the fearlessness and open-hearted vision of people who embrace life.” John Lennon

Demonstrate Love in Your Actions

splendid-heart-shaped-pink-cloud-wallpaper1280x80061876“Every time you smile at someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person, a beautiful thing.” Mother Teresa

Motivating yourself to act out of love can have its challenges. It can be especially difficult when your actions aren’t received with the same type of positive intention you wish to transmit. How does one act out of love when they fear that their intentions will not be reciprocated? It’s easy, do it anyway. When we shelter ourselves from taking loving action we hinder ourselves from ever knowing or feeling the wisdom that comes with love. A rule of thumb to overcome this fear, act the way you want to feel. If your focus is to have your love paid back, you are missing the point of living a life of love. Shift your focus to what you know to be true and genuine in your heart. Love for loves sake and nothing else. “One is loved because one is loved. No reason is needed for loving.” Paulo Coelho Practice living love in everything you do, and watch as you begin to see the world and those around you differently. When we love and are loving we grow in our wisdom. Live in love and it will live within you. Acting out of love in your daily life attracts experiences that assist you to grow into your own truth.  By sharing your wisdom and truth with others you also share your love and affection for them. Living life fully by loving fully not only enhances your inner strength but also enhances your ability to impact positive change. When we are loved there is no telling what wonderful things we are capable of. Move towards love. “A loving person lives in a loving world. A hostile person lives in a hostile world.Everyone you meet is your mirror.” Ken Keyes

Open Your Heart to Others Open-Heart

“We cultivate love when we allow our most vulnerable and powerful selves to be deeply seen and known, and when we honor the spiritual connection that grows from that offering with trust, respect, kindness and affection. Brené Brown 

As Brené Brown’s quotes emphasizes, one can only grow in love when they open their hearts to others. When you allow others to see you at your most vulnerable you permit them to see your true essence. You create a safe space free of judgment and fear and allow for understanding and acceptance to emerge. Honor the person you are by honoring the feelings and emotions you have sheltered from the world. We have all faced our own personal challenges with love. By sharing our personal experiences with those we trust and respect we invite compassion and clarity to come forward. We have all felt similar emotions and we have all had to learn how to heal. This process can be difficult when you go it alone. Let your guard down and let others in. Love is plentiful. It is infinite and within us all. Open your heart to others and cultivate a community built on connectedness, love and mutual understanding. “Love is not love until love’s vulnerable.” Theodore Roethke

“The love you seek is seeking you at this moment.” Deepak Chopra

Ambition In The City

Picking up the Pieces: Overcoming a Loss

“Write the  bad things that are done to you in the sand, but write the good things that happen to you on  a piece of marble.” – Arabic Saying

Overcoming a loss of any kind can be a long and arduous process. Whether you have recently lost your possessions, your sense of freedom, your livelihood, or someone very dear to you, it is challenging to think there is life after loss. Convincing yourself of this concept can prove to be quite difficult. Just think of the last time you tried to tell a friend or loved one that they would eventually be able to pick up the pieces, that it would just take time. This is obviously easier said then done when you are not the person that feels as though their world is slowly crumbling down upon them. While many at first try to deny what has happened to them by closing their eyes to the loss they have experienced,  they quickly realize they cannot turn their mind or heart off to the reality of their situation. They have experienced a loss and are just expected to watched the world go on before their very eyes. For many this brings about feelings of resentment and total abandonment. “How can the world not see what is happening to me?” “How can those around me not understand what I’m going through?” While those who see you suffer would probably give anything in their power to help you to see they too suffer in knowing you’re hurting, it will never be enough.  Picking up the pieces after a loss is in your hands alone. Support and love can help you in this process, but in the end the decision to overcome and to move on is yours and yours alone.

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Will your circumstances eventually get better? The answer to this is… yes!  In the moment, it is very hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. That glimmer of hope where you see yourself a few months or years down the road, living a life having fully recovered from the loss you have experienced. If we could somehow see our future selves happy and healthy after suffering a loss it would surely help us to speed up the process. While we cannot see this for ourselves in the moment it is something we need to learn to aspire to. Look to better days they are just around the corner. Think of past experiences you’ve had with loss. Whether they were a major or minor loss, you were able to pick yourself up and move forward. How did it all play out? Was there someone who helped you to move on? Did you wake up one morning and decide today was going to be different? Perhaps this is your first experience with loss. Is there anyone you can look to whom has experienced a similar pain? Whatever strength you discover to aid you in your journey to healing, try to find it in this moment.

“Beginning is easy; continuing is hard.” – Japanese Proverb

JUMP AHEAD TO THAT NEW DAY

You have allowed yourself time to go through the process of grieving. You have experienced the common steps associated with the grieving process and have found that you are closer and closer to healing. What has transpired in these last few months or years after your loss?  You have allowed for a healthy amount of denial to pass through your mind. In the beginning all you wanted to do was close your eyes to what happened. It was during this stage that you thought if you just go to bed and wake up this experience would all just have been a bad dream. When you were finally ready to accept reality, you allowed yourself the chance to yell at the top of your lungs and ask “Why!!!.” You permitted your feelings of anger to surface and present themselves for you to feel. By doing so, you were eventually able to see your feelings of anger dissipate. As time passed you began to negotiate with the universe.  These were the moments you would hear yourself bargaining for a different circumstance. “I would give anything for a chance to say…” “I would trade anything to get those moments back.” “I promise to do it right this time.” When you finally came to the realization that your cries for hope failed to result in any change in circumstance, depression settled in. You accepted these feelings and allowed them to have their moment in your life. You sought to isolate yourself from others and to deal with your pain head on.  “Don’t be afraid to cry. It will free your mind of sorrowful thoughts.” – Hopi Saying. When you finally processed your emotions you realized that the final stage of healing was upon you. You slowly began to accept your loss and slowly returned to the world. Did you have moments where you felt scared, guilty, or full of doubt? Absolutely! You took each of these moments in stride because you had finally begun to feel what it was to experience a sense of healing. You have once again rejoined the world and have grown from your experience with a better understanding of life. You have overcome a loss and are a better person because of it.

If there is anything I would like for readers to gain from this post is the inevitable truth that healing is a process that requires time and a great deal of mental strength. Healing will come when you allow yourself an opportunity to feel all the emotions one is expected to encounter when they experience loss. If you deny yourself the opportunity to feel what we all know is natural and common, then the process of healing will be made all the more difficult. One cannot deny themselves this opportunity for the sake of others or for the sake of not appearing weak or vulnerable. It is your happiness and ultimately your peace of mind that you are gambling with. We will all encounter loss in one form or another throughout our lifetime so it is important that we accept these moments as moments that will not only challenge us, but will help to shape us as human beings.

Ambition In The City

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