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Life Lesson: The Only Love You Are Entitled to Is the Love You Give Yourself

I wrote a post on New Year’s about life lessons that I’d come to discover over the past year. I promised to expand on them so…here goes.

Lesson #1: The Only Love You Are Entitled to is the Love You Give Yourself

As much as I would like to pretend like this first lesson is one that I’ve mastered already…it’s not. It’s one that I struggle with nearly every single day of my life.

Like you, I’m sure, over the years I’ve had relationships come and go beginning and ending for different reasons. Each relationship I’ve had throughout life, from childhood friendships to those that I’ve had the honor of participating in as an adult, has impacted who I am as a person.

I recently read a blog post highlighting the emotional devastation felt from lost friendships where the original author described her experience in meeting a coworker, feeling that there was potential for great friendship, and then realizing that the other person did not feel the same. My reaction to the original post is below:

After posting, I thought more about the topic as it relates to all of the relationships in my life. I’ll be honest with you, feeling that you care about someone that doesn’t feel the same about you hurts…a lot. I think that’s why they make songs and movies about unrequited love, right?

But at the end of the day, here’s the thing…

You’re not entitled to someone else’s love. And neither am I.

It’s nice to be loved by other people…but we’re not entitled to it, in any way.

I believe a lot of hurt, devastation, and emotional trauma are a result of feeling entitled to love that you don’t receive.

Understanding that you aren’t owed someone else’s love is super hard. It’s something that I struggle with nearly every single day of my life because as much as I acknowledge this hard truth, deep down inside I still seek validation and love from other people (because I am, after all, a human being).

This year, I plan to work on trying to overcome feeling entitled to receive love from others and recognize that the love that I do receive is a bonus to the love that I give to myself.

Until next time,

H

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