February is the token month for love – commercially speaking. I’m already seeing strings of hearts going up on the walls of gas stations that dot the highway from Denver into the mountains. I’m seeing the bulging isles of pink and red in Walgreens. (Who goes to Walgreens anymore? I know, I do). And while I believe that love should be celebrated, I think chalking up our most romantic gestures, gifts, and quality time to February 14th leaves us missing the point of this incarnation entirely.
Let’s just state the obvious, love should be celebrated every day, right? Then why does that feel so hard sometimes? One reason is because we collapse love and relationship into one entity. We make them depend on each other. We have gotten deeply attached to conditional love and we are suffering for it.
Let me explain.
If we allow love and relationship to exist separately as two different entities, we can begin to ease the pain many of us carry from collapsing them into a dependent association. For example, if we consider this principle and examine a parent who has treated us badly, we come to realize that our decision about the relationship can exist independently from the assessment of whether or not they deserve our love.
Too often, we decide that people -based on their behaviors- don’t deserve love. There’s actually no one on this god given earth that does not deserve love. However, what someone might not deserve is our trust and our time. This distinction can heal hearts. How? Because it is, in fact, holding back our love that hurts our hearts the most, even more than the distance between us.
Let’s go deeper.
Love is something that the heart is born to do.
The love I am talking about is a universal love that is bigger than us, while also being the fabric of what we are made of and bounded by. It’s a substance that emanates from the heart, and is not conditional. It is the kind of love that exists without opinion. It just is. And the heart celebrates this kind of love!
When we allow the shifts of relationship to complicate the heart’s desire to express itself, we suffer unnecessary pain. The love I’m pointing to does not need words or phone calls or apology letters to make it so. It is the inner choice to release oneself from holding back a natural and infinite flow, alleviate the strain we’ve bound our hearts by unknowingly. The choice is energetic and intentional.
Thus, asking our hearts not to love can actually cause physical pain, illness, premature aging, and more. The pain we feel from ending a relationship is not always about the separation or the absence, as I said, but about holding love back.
I understand, we withdraw our love because we don’t feel safe, or we want to “hurt them back,” or we want to make a point – all things that end up hurting us in the long run. I’ve been there. I’ve done it myself. And what I am saying is that you don’t have to hold back your love because you’ve set a boundary. Allow the heart to remain open while re-defining the relationship.
There are many kinds of relationships -friends, lovers, partners, parents, acquaintances, siblings, co-workers, spiritual community members, teammates… the list goes on and on. When we give ourselves the chance to see that each category of relationship carries its own unique signature of values, agreements, and style of connection, we adjust our behavior and our expectations, the way we interact, our trust and our time, but not the openness of our heart. The heart stays open.
You see, emotional freedom happens through the heart. And emotional freedom is our birthright. But in order for the heart to operate well, it must be permitted to open to the world and emanate its vibrational field to all of life. Not just some of life. In the same way a flower releases its fragrance, showing no bias to who walks by, or who admires it, or who picks a petal… it simply and freely emits its mesmerizing scent. Our hearts long for the same permission.
Therefore, if someone in our life moves from one category of relationship to another, our job is to make the necessary adjustments in our expectations. It’s an invitation to uphold our values and be in integrity with ourselves around how we show up. In this way we become empowered in our boundary making, in our communication, and in our guiding values. And when we do this, we can surrender with ease to allowing our heart to do what it does best: emit love.
PERMISSION TO LOVE MORE
Join me in this month’s meditation where we clear the blocks and take down the walls that damn up our heart’s love. When we allow ourselves to emanate this unconditional love into the shadows of our being, then the flow of our love increases in the places we already allow it to run freely! Take a chance, and join me in celebrating love every day!
XOX And hey, and Happy Valentine’s Day