22 Jan I love you IF…
When you say: “I love you” to the person you love, are you saying: I love you, all of you, unconditionally; or do you mean: I love you IF?
We all have loved someone deeply at some point in our lives. But have we been capable of loving to the fullest? We carry within us patterns, societal guidelines, ideals that have been engrained in our brains for generations. When we develop feelings for someone, the love we feel can be filtered and full of projections. We measure it against the ideals we have formed of what love should be or look like.
“I love him very much.” “I can’t imagine my life without her.” But do we still love that person when he/she is unwilling or unable to conform to our definition of love? Do we still love them when their essence and purpose does not align with our ideals? Do we love them when we are unable to check off the boxes? Or unable to fit them into that box labeled “the one?”
The warrior poet Aubrey Marcus planted the seed for this reflection a while back. It wasn’t until recently, however, that I realized I had been asking myself the wrong question all along. The root of the matter is, often times we don’t love ourselves unconditionally. We love ourselves IF we achieve our goals. If our behavior is rewarded. If we conform to the ideals of those we love. IF others validate us.
So the question here should be: Do you love yourself, all of you, unconditionally? Or do you love yourself IF?
Are we able to love ourselves when we fail? When others judge our actions in a negative way? When our purpose does not align with what those we love think we should be doing? Can we love ourselves the way we are? How we love others is a reflection of how we love ourselves.
Who we are is constantly subject to change. What we like, what we give our energy to… all subject to undergo a metamorphosis as we shed layers along the way. The idea is not to conform or to resist change or growth. We can love and accept ourselves for all that we are TODAY, and still strive to grow into more resilient, aware, loving versions of ourselves.
Patterns are meant to be observed, understood, and challenged, not judged. What are your patterns when it comes to self-love?