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Love: Before & After

Life often takes the form of a two-fold battle:

  1. Learning to love yourself enough to pursue your dreams even when others hate you for it.
  2. Learning to love yourself again after you’ve pursued your dreams, failed to realize them, and lost your pride in the process.

Self-love: Sometimes we need it in order to be our best. Sometimes we need it precisely because we aren’t our best.

Sometimes we need it in order to motivate us to work. Sometimes we need it precisely because motivation doesn’t always work.

Sometimes we need it in order to create new beginnings. Sometimes we need it in order to make peace with our endings.

I’ve never consider myself a hopeless romantic, but there’s at least one thing I’ve always admired about them: They find a way to make love survive even when they can’t keep all their dreams alive.

You should do the same.

Love yourself enough to go after what you want, but don’t stop loving yourself just because you fail to get it.

Before and after your dreams, your life is still worth fighting for.

 

Are You Mature Enough To Handle A Compliment?

It’s often said that the mark of maturity is the ability to take criticism.

I’d also contend that it’s no less of a sign of depth to demonstrate the ability to take a compliment.

A message I penned a couple of years ago bears repeating:

When someone offers you a compliment, and you respond by explaining away your positive attributes in terms of how your mother raised you, what city you’re from, or how many advantages you’ve had, it doesn’t change the fact that your goodness is still worthy of being appreciated. The ability to explain the origins of a virtue does not make that virtue any less real or praiseworthy. So when someone applauds you for demonstrating good character, don’t treat them like they’re being irrational or unethical. When people compliment you, it’s not because they’re under the illusion that you’re a perfect, self-sufficient being that’s never had any help. It’s simply a kind way of saying ‘I appreciate you’ or ‘I admire you.’ It’s already a rare experience for most of us to feel celebrated. So when it happens, why not allow it? Ease up on the scientific explanations for why you refuse to be impressed with yourself and just allow the other person to have their moment of gratitude.

We’re well aware of your flaws and imperfections. Please allow us to have at least one moment to talk about your beauty.

We Are Among Them

In our efforts to defend the weak, let us not forget that we are among them. For we too are in need of protection.

In our efforts to affirm the neglected and overlooked, let us not forget that we are among them. For we too are in need of compassion and sympathy.

In our efforts to heal the world and make the planet a better place, let us not forget that we are among Earth’s children. For we too are in need of healing and help.

Whatever good we seek to do for others, let us not forget to do the same manner of good for ourselves.

We are not greater than those we love. We are among them. And we too are in need of love.

 

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