Of all the “Hallmark holidays” I love Valentine’s Day the best.
It takes the “gratefulness” from Thanksgiving and adds in “all love, all the time.”
And rumor has it that sex may be part of the deal too…but this is a “G-Rated blog…”
I started writing this blog February 14, 2014, in honor and memory of Marty Edelston (my friend and mentor) who had passed away in October of 2013.
It is no accident that the man with the biggest heart in the world was born on February 14th…yes, Valentine’s Day is Marty’s birthday too.
So I kicked off this blog two years ago sharing a quote from my good friend Sean Stephenson, a psychotherapist, author and internationally known speaker:
“I love everyone because as soon as I don’t love you, you own me”
The lesson here is quite simple:
When we spend our energy NOT loving someone, we willingly hand over our power (and more than likely, our confidence) to them.
But if we work on eliminating the things in ourselves that keep us from loving others, what’s left is just love and gratefulness (and more confidence).
Although I am far from a student of religion, Sean’s quote is a modernization of something we should all practice in our lives…that is, “love your enemies”…wish them well…so you can move on to what is really important in your life which is your own happiness and well-being.
I know…old news…but how many of us spend more time and energy making others’ wrong, creating anger (and stress) while we ignore all the good stuff we could be focusing on?
Someone recently “quoted me” on Facebook with a quote that I did not author but it’s one I try to live by…and I hope it’s meaningful to you as you move through this Valentine’s Day, loving everyone.
The quote goes like this:
“The only consistent feature of all your dissatisfying relationships is you.”
Isn’t it funny that the people in our lives who have the longest lists of people who have wronged them, made their lives miserable, caused unhappiness for them, rarely come to the realization that they are the CEO of their life and that there is only one thing that is present in all of those relationships?
OK…enough on the lecture…Valentine’s Day is simply the best holiday…and I will close with one more quote which is the same one I closed with two years ago.
From the great Stephen Stills:
“Love the one you’re with”
With love and gratitude (and wishing you an awesome “V-Day”),
This post was written by Brian Kurtz and posted on Valentine’s Day. However, the message Brian shares pertains to every day! Love is important and we need to be aware of our need to be loving to ourselves and to others. This article has been shared from the following website: https://www.briankurtz.me/the-importance-of-loving-everyone-2/
You deserve to be treated well by others. You deserve to be loved and respected. You deserve to be happy. You deserve to have your needs met. You are worth investing time and energy into. You are capable of great things. Your feelings are important. You have power and wisdom inside of you. What you want matters.
And all this is still true, even if you make mistakes. Even if you are not perfect.
As a therapist and life coach, I have sat with some of the most phenomenally put-together, objectively successful, gorgeous, talented, and intelligent people in the world who still genuinely believe that they are irredeemably flawed. They run multi-million dollar businesses, go on international adventures, and accomplish astounding things, yet they struggle to feel like are valuable and worthy of love and respect. The disconnect between how amazing they are and how they feel about themselves is as wide as the Grand Canyon.
So how about you? Take a second and re-read the paragraph at the top of the page. Do those statements feel true to you? Or does a part of you cringe away from them, thinking that such things might be true for others but not for you? Does your brain instantly reject these ideas, firing back with an endless catalog of your many mistakes and short-comings: all the “evidence” to prove that you are less worthy somehow?
Why is it so easy to lose your confidence and your self-esteem?
You are a perfect, unique snowflake gliding through your time here on earth. There has never been anyone quite like you. You are smart, you are capable, and you are good. You are here to love and be loved. You have things about you that set you apart from other people. Maybe it’s your style, or your humor, or your tenacity. Maybe it’s the fearless way you’ve lived your life, or the heroic mountains you’ve climbed on your journey. Perhaps your most wonderful quality is the way you care so deeply for others.
But it’s easy to forget that when you have to fight for your right to be heard, respected and understood, in a world that pushes back.
Every single one of us has been bruised on this journey through life. We’ve all been disappointed by people. We’ve taken risks, only to fall flat and feel humiliated for our efforts. Maybe toxic relationships have made you feel diminished. Perhaps you didn’t get your needs met at a time that you desperately needed support, and you are still carrying the scars of those primary wounds.
Over time the injuries of life can erode your belief in yourself. You can get tricked into believing that your not-so-great life experiences define you. Niggling doubts like, “Maybe my [insert one: critical father / rejecting Ex / high school chemistry teacher] was right about me,” or “This is probably the best I can expect,” keep you from feeling that you deserve more.
But you cannot let the inevitable traumas of the human experience break you. You cannot allow yourself to be diminished by others. You must never allow your core self to be ground away by disappointment.
Why Your Healthy Self Esteem is So Vital
Other people treat you the way you expect to be treated.
You rise to meet your expectations of yourself.
You make choices and take chances based on what you believe is possible.
Think about what could happen to you if you totally lost sight of your inner beauty, your worth, your potential, and your inherent right to be loved and respected? How chilling to consider the fate that might befall you if your life, and the people in it, began to conform to those expectations.
You must be your own hero. The world is hard enough without you tearing yourself down, beating yourself up for your failures, and punishing yourself. When you stop believing in yourself and your worth as a person, your abilities, and that you deserve to be treated well all is lost. No one else is going to be your champion — because no one can.
How to Heal Your Self Esteem
It’s time for you to take your power back. All faith is a choice. All beliefs are voluntary. You can decide to be your number one fan, and actively, intentionally build yourself up. You can support yourself from the inside out. In fact, you have to. No one else is going to be your champion — because no one can.
Remind yourself daily, hourly, or minute-by-minute on especially challenging days:
Only you get to decide what you are worth. Only you get to decide how you deserve to be treated by others. Only you decide what is possible for you.
Decide today: You are worthy of love and respect. You are capable of great things. You are a good, smart, strong person. Make those statements your mantra. Believe they are so. Act as if they are so. And watch as the world rises to meet YOU…
Today’s article was written by Dr. Lisa Marie Bobby and is shared from the following website: https://www.growingself.com/self-esteem-believing-you-are-worthy-of-love-and-respect/
The heart of the matter is that it is the heart that matters. To have optimal cardiovascular health, your emotional and spiritual heart is just as important as your physical heart, and care must be given to all aspects of this vital organ.
Every thought and every emotion causes an instantaneous cascade of hundreds, if not thousands, of neuropeptides and hormones that orchestrate a symphony of positive and negative effects within the body. That is why it is so important to pay close attention to the thoughts and emotions that are running through your mind, as they dictate the symphony of neurotransmitters playing in your body. As an example, would you rather be listening to the soothing sounds of classical music or the heart-pounding, adrenaline-charging sounds of heavy metal?
Love is a strong emotion, representing human kindness, compassion, and deep affection. Love is unselfish and benevolent. Love is pure. Love is self-directed and directed toward others. Most importantly, love is a vital component for the health of your heart, body, mind, and soul.
Ways That Love Benefits Your Health:
Love improves self-esteem, which leads to better self-care. Self-love is key because when you love yourself, you are much more likely to engage in activities that contribute to better nutrition and physical fitness, and less likely to make unhealthy lifestyle choices.
Love is a great antidote to stress. Love counteracts the fight-or-flight response that we so often find ourselves in. Even low levels of stress cause the body to release cortisol, which is associated with an increased risk of developing high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease and depression. Love downregulates the production of cortisol. Love encourages your body to produce oxytocin, the “feel-good” or “love” hormone. Oxytocin can reduce cardiovascular stress and improve the immune system, which in turn decreases cell death and inflammation. Love also causes the production in your brain of norepinephrine and dopamine (both hormones associated with adrenaline), which leads to increased feelings of joy and pleasure. Love really is your best medicine.
Love decreases anxiety and staves off depression, which subsequently reduces the signs and symptoms of heart disease. In his book Love and Survival: Eight Pathways to Intimacy and Health, Dean Ornish, M.D describes one study where married men who suffered from angina (chest pains) experienced far less angina if they felt loved by their wives, even despite high-risk factors like high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
Love decreases inflammation, improves your immune system, and can be a potent pain reliever. A recent study from the Institute for Behavioral Medicine Research at Ohio State University College of Medicine showed that people who are lonely develop more reactivation of latent viruses than those that are well connected. Possible mechanisms for these actions include increased release of cytokines, better relaxation and the release of endorphins
Sleeping next to someone you love makes you feel more relaxed, which helps you to sleep better. Numerous studies have linked the benefits to the feel-good hormone oxytocin. Adequate rest is vital to heart health and overall well-being, as much of the reparative work of the body is done during sleep.
Not just at Valentine’s Day, but all year around, it is important to remind yourself that there is so much more to love than just romantic love. There is the love of life, love of nature, love of animals, love of others, and love of self, and all of these acts of love provide amazing health benefits.
Ways to Incorporate Love Into Your Life
Be more loving and giving. Bring happiness and joy into other people’s lives. Be generous with your time and money; be a person of increase. You can do this through volunteerism and altruism. I challenge everyone to do one random act of kindness today, even if it is as simple as smiling at someone.
Hug often and hold hands. Physical contact in a loving and nurturing way has the ability to instantly improve your mood, lower stress levels and put you at ease. Try to hug at least one person you love every day.
Be more playful in your loving relationship and make love often. Remind your partner about how much you care for them, and make time for them, no matter how busy you are.
Love life — bring more joy into your life each day. Flirt with life… laugh, dance, sing. One way to manifest this is to allow yourself to really laugh without holding anything back and simply enjoy this pure laughter.
Love yourself and be kind to yourself today. Treat yourself like you would another person who you are truly in love with. The more you love yourself, the better equipped you will be to love others. And the more love you give, the more you will receive.
Today’s article was written by Dr. Cynthia Thaik and has been shared from the following website: https://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-cynthia-thaik/love-health-benefits_b_3131370.html
Over the last several weeks, I have been reminded of the importance of never settling when it comes to love – that love that you will (or should) call that love of your life. I have been happily married to my sweet, amazing husband for 40 years now. And…that is my point: NEVER SETTLE WHEN IT COMES TO LOVE!!!
I have seen the divorces and the heart-wrenching situations of those who settled. In reality, there is no such thing as settling, there is only succumbing (briefly) to the belief that no one will ever love us. As I have witnessed those relationship wrecks, I have cried for those broken souls who let the belief sink into their hearts that no one would ever truly love them. I don’t know who or what they doubted more: that God would provide them with a true love or that they were worthy of such.
Love is worth sacrifice. It is worth living alone. It is worth living with uncertainty. It is worth passing up the one you think may be the only person who will ever want you. No one finds true love by settling for the one that “will do”.
It is with that thought in mind that I share today’s article. I hope you enjoy!
Trust me, all singles get to that place. Oh, you know the one…
You’ve been single for a while, and since you really really want to be in a relationship, you start to bargain with yourself. You think, “Maybe I could just settle for someone I like just enough” instead of waiting for one who will truly make your heart floweth over. Well, here’s the sign I’d post in that puddle of pessimism: No settling allowed!
As anyone who’s already read the preface to Meeting Your Half-Orange knows, I’m all about being picky.
To make it clear why I don’t think you should settle for “eh” when it comes to a lifetime love partner, here are 10 reasons why settling works against you. Don’t settle for love, because…
1. Settling is a choice made from fear.
Don’t choose a relationship because you’re afraid to be alone. Or because you’re afraid you won’t find someone better. Or because you’re afraid you’re not good enough to attract someone who’s nuts about the real, true you. Be strong, not scared! You’re a tough cookie and you know you’re meant for more, so don’t let fear make decisions for you. Trust in the good life can bring you.
2. Passion is like a hot pepper in a good soup.
In other words, it changes in flavor, but it doesn’t diminish. If you choose a relationship with a passion and attraction to the whole person (not just their looks), the rewards of that emotional attraction can still be there decades later. But choose a relationship without that emotional passion? You could end up with a soup with no flavor at all.
3. Friendship marriages are different than deep, romantic ones.
Yes, some people can commit to an arranged marriage and still stay together for the long run. But it can take years to develop any emotional zing—if ever they do at all. Relationships can offer so much more than someone who cleans the toilet or puts gas in the car every other time. You can have more if you want it.
4. Love isn’t a business contract!
I read a quote from a woman who says she feels okay that she settled for her partner since marriage, after all, is like “a mundane non-profit business.” A mundane non-profit business? Goodness, what kind of marriage is that? Personally, I prefer to be alone than spend time with people who don’t speak in some way to my heart. Don’t you? Marriage or your big relationship should be the same way! Let your heart have a say.
5. When the novelty of coupledom wears off, you’re stuck with each other.
All day. All night. All weekend. All the time. Watching not just your favorite shows but theirs. Withstanding not just their acceptable habits, but their annoying ones, too. Do you want to spend all your quality time with someone you wouldn’t give your high-quality stamp of approval?
6. Settling is a sign you’re pessimistic about your future.
It says you think you’ll never meet someone who adores you, who’s healthy and right for you, and who you love wholeheartedly in return. Be a dating optimist! If you want to feel happy, challenged, smart, pretty, safe and attracted to your partner, you can. You first have to believe the right partner is out there for you, and then begin asking for him or her to come rolling on into your life.
7. You deserve more!
If you want to feel amazing about yourself and feed your healthy self-esteem, you should partner with a wonderful, respectable person you’re madly attracted to in some special way. Settling with someone you don’t respect and adore is a way of diminishing yourself. You deserve someone as great in heart and soul as you are.
8. If you settle, there may come a day later in your life when you feel you’re missing something.
Are you prepared to battle with that? Someday, when you see couples who seem to care deeply for each other in palm-sweating, butterfly-churning ways, do you want to think, “What have I done? I never had that…” or do you want to smile, hug your honey and say, “Love is amazing. We have that, too.”
9. You deserve a big, bad, wonderful love!
Long-term commitments are marathons, not sprints. If you’re going to go the distance, you want someone next to you that makes the run worth doing—through the highs, the lows, the effort and the exhaustion. Give yourself the gift of a wonderful life for the whole long run.
10. If you’ve settled with a so-so someone, you won’t be open when your half-orange comes along!
Your other half is so desperately hoping you’ll be open. Do yourself the favor of making sure you are. Don’t lie down into a relationship if it’s not going to make you stand up and shine. Celebrate yourself and the love you’re meant to have and don’t settle for anything less!
A woman came out of her house and saw 3 old men with long white beards sitting in her front yard. She did not recognize them.
She said, “I don’t think I know you, but you must be hungry. Please come in and have something to eat.”
“Is the man of the house home?”, they asked.
“No”, she said. “He’s out.”
“Then we cannot come in”, they replied. In the evening when her husband came home, she told him what had happened.
“Go tell them I am home and invite them in!” The woman went out and invited the men in. “We do not go into a House together,” they replied.
“Why is that?” she wanted to know. One of the old men explained: “His name is Wealth,” he said pointing to one of his friends, and said pointing to another one, “He is Success, and I am Love.” Then he added, “Now go in and discuss with your husband which one of us you want in your home.”
The woman went in and told her husband what was said. Her husband was overjoyed. “How nice!!”, he said. “Since that is the case, let us invite Wealth. Let him come and fill our home with wealth!”
His wife disagreed. “My dear, why don’t we invite Success?”
Their daughter-in-law was listening from the other corner of the house. She jumped in with her own suggestion: “Would it not be better to invite Love? Our home will then be filled with love!”
“Let us heed our daughter-in-law’s advice,” said the husband to his wife. “Go out and invite Love to be our guest.”
The woman went out and asked the 3 old men, “Which one of you is Love? Please come in and be our guest.” Love got up and started walking toward the house. The other 2 also got up and followed him. Surprised, the lady asked Wealth and Success: “I only invited Love, Why are you coming in?”
The old men replied together: “If you had invited Wealth or Success, the other two of us would’ve stayed out, but since you invited Love, wherever He goes, we go with him. Wherever there is Love, there is also Wealth and Success!”
Today’s story was shared from the following website: https://academictips.org/blogs/the-greatest-gift-is-love/