Today’s WAFYWF post comes with an invitation to learn about and share the world of The Poor People’s Campaign. This is an organization I recently learned about and fell in love with. Perhaps you will, too! And speaking of love …
Question: Will I find love?
Answer: Of course you will … If you want to. If you’re keeping your eyes and your heart open. If you’re not in too much of a hurry. If you know what you’re looking for. If you’re willing to compromise (but not too much). If you’re willing to be patient but also willing to take a risk now and then.
I assume you’re talking about romantic love, yes? Most people experience love in the form of friendship or family bonds, and yet, for some reason we’re preoccupied with finding romantic love as though it were more valuable or more essential than other forms of love. I’m not really sure why that is, frankly.
Here are my suggestions on how to find love.
Spend some time thinking about what love is to you. Who do you love at this moment in your life? Who have you loved in the past, and who has loved you (whether it was mutual or not)? What does it feel like to love someone and to receive love? What’s the purest expression of love you’ve ever experienced?
Recognize that love is not the same as a relationship. There are many people I love with whom I have minimal contact. Why? Because loving a person does not mean they are good for me or that I’m good for them. Also, I have been in relationships that lacked real love. Do not confuse the two.
Consider what it is you want to share with the person or people you love. Are you looking for someone to have a child with, someone to share physical intimacy, someone to laugh with, someone to take on life’s great adventures with? Do you have a preference about the gender and appearance of the people you love? Are you hoping to find someone who will see you as you are and accept you, someone who will help you grow as a person, or someone who will open up your ideas about who you can be?
Think about how you want to be treated by the people you love. What do you love and appreciate about yourself that you wish others would see and celebrate with you? How might a connection with a loving partner help you to nurture those awesome parts of yourself and heal the parts of you that need healing? How do you want your loved ones to talk to you, look at you, and interact with you? Make sure you’re spending time with people who meet these needs and desires — even if they are not the romantic partner you’re looking for, you deserve to be treated with love by everyone you welcome into your life.
Of course, love is not just about receiving but also about giving. What would you like to give to the people you love? What forms of giving come naturally to you? If you feel like you don’t have much to give right now, take note and prioritize self care before you proceed with your search for love. If you have tons of love to give but the people around you are closed to receiving it, your relationships with them may be strained or completely blocked. Reflect on what you feel you can offer to the people you love and who is open to receiving that from you and who seems to look right past it.
Evaluate what you love (or don’t love) about the people who are already in your life. Chances are good that some of the people in your life feel nurturing and supportive while some others don’t. Allow yourself to gravitate toward those people who help you grow. If there are people in your life who make you feel shut down, ashamed, afraid, or unworthy, don’t count it as a loss if they drift out of your life. If you need to take active steps to cut those people out, do it. Even if you think they’re good people, they may not be capable of loving you in the way you need and deserve right now. Even if it seems drastic like closing your social media accounts or changing your phone number — you’re allowed to let go of people who are un-loving toward you. There’s very little room for love and growth in our lives when we spend our energy catering to the opposite.
Finally, remember that love is not some inanimate object one can acquire and collect. Love is not a treasure chest buried on a remote island. It’s a value, a way of life, a feeling, an action, a choice. When we approach our lives, selves, friends, families and communities with love, we tend to generate more love through those interactions. Love is so simple it’s mystifying, and so essential we often overlook it. It is both physical and spiritual yet difficult to grasp intellectually. It is one of the driving forces in our lives, even when it looks completely impractical. It is a devotion and a way of life.
If you make it your goal to live every day with love, you will undoubtedly find it. It’s impossible to say when or how you will find the romantic partner of your dreams, but I believe that you can surround yourself with love, which will gradually lead you to find exactly the people you need in your life.
Wishing you all the love you can handle —
If you appreciate this post, I would appreciate it if you’d watch this video from The Poor People’s Campaign and follow up by learning more about the organization. If you feel inspired by their mission as I do, you can get involved by donating, participating in meetings, sharing their work, and learning from their resources. Their web site is full of excellent information, so I urge you to check it out. Thanks!
Don’t forget to submit questions if you’d like to see this advice experiment continue. Thanks!