Loving People is Selfish

I want you to think about the person you love most in the whole world. Think of a time you felt totally consumed with love for this person. Maybe you’re thinking of the beginning of a relationship or perhaps your wedding day. Some of my favorite moments are just the ordinary everyday moments. We’ll be driving down the road, or sitting on the coach, or watching tv in bed and I look over at my spouse and I’m just overcome with love for him. It feels up my entire chest and then spreads to every cell in my body.

I have similar moments with my kids. I think of their birth and the moment they were placed in my arms. I couldn’t believe how much I loved them already. And I knew that this love changed everything, that my life would never be the same.

Love feels amazing! Of all the emotions I feel on a regular basis, love is definitely one of my favorites. When I’m feeling love, I am the very best version of myself. Love drives the actions that help me to be the kind of wife I want to be, the kind of mom I want to be, the kind of daughter I want to be, the kind of friend I want to be.

So here’s the thing. My hubby can’t feel my love. In those moments when I’m looking at him and feeling totally consumed by love — he doesn’t feel anything. He might notice me staring at him and ask what’s up. But he can’t feel my love. Only I can feel it. Certainly if my kids could actually feel how much I love them, things would be different, right? But they can’t feel it either. Only I can feel my love.

Why is this important to know? Too often, we withhold our love. When someone doesn’t behave in the way we think they should, we withhold our love. Maybe we think they don’t deserve it. Consciously or subconsciously, we’re punishing them for their “bad behavior.” But they can’t actually feel our love, remember? So who am I really punishing? Who do I really think doesn’t deserve to feel love? Me feeling awful doesn’t make them feel anything. It just hurts me.

Love is something I do for myself. I’m the only one that gets to feel my love. And it feels amazing! Why would I choose to not feel it? In addition, love helps me be the person I want to be. Why on earth would I ever choose anything else?

Here’s my challenge to you. Choose love. Every time. It doesn’t matter what your spouse did; what your kids did; what your neighbor did. Choose to love them for you. If you’re coming from love, you’re going to show up as the kind of person you want to be. And you get to feel love, which feels amazing. Just choose love.

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