Post written by Carina Spring.
This stunning photo by: http://www.aliciaandneilphotography.com/
“Fear is going to be a player in your life, but you get to decide how much…all there will ever be is what’s happening here, in the decisions we make in this moment, which are based on either love or fear… Choose love and don’t ever let fear turn you against your playful heart. ”
Love vs. Fear
Today is Valentines. Whether you are single or partnered, a person who ignores this Hallmark holiday, or one who decorates for it, this is the day to talk about the idea of love.
All pink hearts aside, whenever we are faced with fear and uncertainty in life, there is an antidote: we can base our thinking, our decisions and actions on love. I am not talking about co-dependence, or turbulent infatuation. I am talking about real love: the life-enriching condition that is healthy, and inspires and comforts us. In fact, approaching life from a place of love will help you find more overall joy and fulfillment.
What do I mean? Here is a personal example.
Years ago, I made a decision to intentionally approach my career obligations from a place of love, and a genuine caring for others. Inevitably, this soon extended to include compassion for myself (Acknowledging that I am not perfect, I can’t do it all, I am doing my best even if it doesn’t always match some “ideal”, and I also have to take care of myself). Suddenly, my career life transformed. I have become one of those people who truly enjoys her time at work. That doesn’t mean that everything is always perfect, or that I don’t have ever have ups and downs. The thing is that facing all aspects of my job with love- the exciting and interesting stuff, as well as the tedious or difficult stuff- brings meaning and motivation to my task. I forget my fears, my shyness, and my insecurities and focus on the the job with passion and dedication.
How to Apply the Antidote
In your life, when you are feeling tense, facing a difficult decision, or feeling afraid, take a soft breath and take a few moments to reflect.
1) First, think about self-love. Not selfishness, but self–love. Act with compassion and kindness. This doesn’t mean you don’t push yourself to be better. You want the best for yourself; you want to grow and learn. But to make real progress, you need to accept who you are and how you feel. Even if it isn’t what you’d like it to be, you have to work with what you’ve got. You have to love and understand who you are in order to make the right choices for yourself.
2) Act with regard for your own health, safety and respect. Kindness for others should never mean accepting abuse.
3) Next, consider how your actions will contribute to the well-being of others. It helps me to remember that most people are just doing their best. Forget fear, forget boredom, and focus instead on caring. That intention is what counts, and will bring more meaning to everything you do.
4) It’s more fun to approach a task with the feeling that it can help others! It helps you love the task itself.
5) Keep in mind that there is no such thing as an insignificant kindness. Maybe you are a clerk or waiter who makes someone’s day by providing great service, a doctor who listens to and cares about her patients, or a CEO who treats his employees with generosity. Maybe you return a lost purse at Safeway.
6) As a final thought, let’s remember that love – the unconditional, real bond that happens when a healthy connection flourishes – can be found and expressed in many ways: in the trust between old friends; in the familial love between a parent and child, siblings and relatives; in the companionship of a loyal pet; and, of course, in romantic love.
How great that this Valentines Day falls on the Saturday of a long weekend! No matter what you are up to, enjoy!
Happy Valentines Day!
Today’s quote was from a graduation speech given by Jim Carrey. Who knew he was so profound!
“Love is the answer, at least for most of the questions in my heart.” Do you recognize those lyrics? His voice is a honey sweet treat:
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