I miss being in love. It’s such a horribly wonderful and wonderfully horrible experience. It’s a great state of reality to be living in. Everything is a little bit warmer, a bit brighter. Life all of a sudden has a purpose and a simple one at that: to love and to be loved. Unfortunately, finding love isn’t an easy matter. The majority of people you’ll meet won’t be compatible.
Then, out of those compatible few, the majority won’t be available at the time of interest. Out of those who are available and compatible, only a select few will have real potential. Of course, none of this matters if we aren’t prepared to love. Love isn’t always a beautiful thing – or rather, it doesn’t always continue to be a beautiful thing. I dare say that most love stories turn ugly pretty quickly. The reason is that people aren’t usually prepared to love. We think we are, but that’s only because we are under the illusion that love is the answer to our problems.
Love cannot begin as a solution to your problems -- if it does then it won’t last. The problems you have will either not disappear and the relationship will fail because you’ll believe it isn’t achieving its purpose, or the problems will disappear and so will your interest in the person you claimed to be in love with. Love should not come attached to any conditions.
It should be an entity, a life of its own. It has to be something that survives no matter how much things change outside the relationship or how much more difficult life gets. It’s a tricky concept because a loving relationship consumes those involved and creates a reality that incorporates everything – a reality that latches on to all other aspects of our lives.
Love affects us so profoundly that the way we perceive things becomes altered. Unfortunately, because most people have difficulty separating their personal troubles from their relationship – all troubles affect us in some way – difficulties in our life outside of the relationship are likely to create problems within the relationship.
When love exists simply because it happened, the love is much more likely to last. However, there is one reality that people don’t like to accept. Because love feels so grand, so incredible and overwhelming, individuals like to think that it physically exists as its own entity. But it doesn’t. Love isn’t tangible. It’s not something you catch, but something you create. You love because you choose to love. Yes, you feel that you are falling in love, but you only truly love once you accept it as a fact.
Some people toy with the question of whether or not they are in love for quite some time before they are willing to accept it. Falling in love is choosing to accept that you are in love. Being in love is choosing to be in love. This concept becomes more and more important as the relationship matures and as all mental and emotional intensity begins to numb. The excitement will wither, just like any other once novel experience. When it does, staying in love requires consciously choosing to love – deciding every single day that you do love this person and he or she does mean the world to you.
Deciding to fall in love is much easier than deciding day-in and day-out that you still love this person. The more you get to know a person, the more you come to realize how flawed he or she really is. It’s funny because while we’re all searching for that "perfect" individual, the reality of the situation is that the perfect individual doesn’t, never did and never will exist.
We are all intrinsically flawed; it’s what makes us human. We can’t aim for perfect, but we can aim perfect for us. The questions really come down to what in a person we value most and what we value least. Sure, we all want to be with the best person in the world -- our egos give us no other choice. But best is subjective. Once we understand that the person we are looking for is flawed, it makes things much easier.
The person you can be with forever is the person you decide you love. Deciding to love someone every day of your life can be difficult, as our lover’s flaws become more and more evident over time. So, the only thing we can do is make sure to understand what we can and can’t live with. What’s your minimum viable life partner? What traits are necessary and what’s the order of importance?
Outline what you need, what you want, and what you can live without. Many people are against this line of thinking because they believe it objectifies the person. Yes, you’re correct; it does. But what’s the alternative? Hoping that some magical concept of love stays present in your life forever? Stop dreaming.
Love requires work, just like anything else significant. People should accept that we all use each other and figure out how to do it as respectably as possible. But that’s a whole different topic. What matters is that you stop nitpicking on all those little flaws that really aren’t important to you and instead put more focus on loving all the great things about your partner.
There’s surely enough great things about him or her that you can focus on without having to dwell on the negative. Don’t be so picky because perfection is an impossibility. Finding flaws is normal, but focusing on them is how relationships end. If you can ignore them, then do so. You’ll be happier for it.