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Unlock your heart.

Can't find a mate? Maybe you're not open to love. Here's how to invite love into your life.

As an L.A.-based energy therapist, I've worked with clients all over the world to release old emotional baggage that is holding them back, and I've seen firsthand that relationship baggage can be some of the heaviest. Through this work, I've found that our beliefs about love--how we should find it, how we know who is "right" to be in it with, how we should function when we do discover it--can be so limited. Being open to love and all that comes with it often takes a shift in our thinking.

While many of us see coming out as the biggest hurdle in our quest for a loving partnership, being open to the love that is waiting for us is just as important.

The first step is to look at which perceptions and ideas of love are not working for us. We usually pick up our beliefs, even those about love, from our parents or other influential adults. Even if those beliefs worked for an older generation, they may not serve us in our own lives. It's essential that we look at how we think about love and ask ourselves whose thoughts and emotions they really are. If they are not ours, and they are not healthy for us, it's time to transform them.

The next step? Being willing to let go of all that old stuff we've been carrying around. It's not always easy, but in the end, it's totally and completely worth doing. Here are my three rules for opening up to the greatest love, and my one transformational technique for making that easier.

DITCH PAST EXPECTATIONS, REQUIREMENTS AND AGENDAS

Don't focus on what you thought you were looking for, or who you thought you'd marry, because it might just keep you from seeing the awesomeness of what's right in front of you. Have you been dreaming of a dark-haired, blue-eyed bride to rescue you from an unhappy family situation since you were 15 years old? Are you still 15? Do you even like dark hair anymore? Is finding love as a way to be rescued still the best idea?

While letting go of old requirements and agendas, focus on what would make you feel wonderful in a relationship right now. If you're happily hitched, focus on what your partner does that shows you she loves you, and stop focusing on what your partner is doing that doesn't meet the ideals of your 15-year-old self. Don't punish yourself or your loved one for not meeting those outdated requirements.

A healthy relationship does not consist of any specific character traits of the two partners--it's an energy, a feeling. When you have it, you'll know. If you're not sure, you're not there yet.

LET PEOPLE LOVE YOU THEIR WAY

People don't always love you in the way you want them to. They love you the way they know. You don't always get to choose. Of course, no one should remain in an abusive or toxic relationship, but if that's not what you're dealing with, it will only benefit you to put a little "give" in the way you demand to be loved.

We all have different abilities and capacities, and carry our own emotional baggage, which can get in the way. We spend our lives trying to muddle through that and still love and be loved in the best ways we know how. The more you come to peaceful terms with allowing others to love you their way, the more awesome your love life will be.

STOP BELIEVING THE WORLD REVOLVES AROUND YOU

When we take things personally, whether we're getting to know someone new or during a long-term commitment, we put a strain on our relationships. Every time your partner is upset, it's not because you suck. It's most likely because they think they suck in some way (remember, they believe the world revolves around them, too). We all like to think we're the center of another person's universe, but it doesn't help anyone when we hold on to that belief. How can we be supportive to another person when it's all about us?

Stop for a minute, when you get angry, defensive, or agitated, and decide to make a choice: that you won't allow this to be all about you. In that instant, you'll create the ability to love yourself and your partner more than you ever could before.

Finally, we must be able to sit through difficult emotions in order to be the most openhearted, loving people we can be. While that's not always easy, I have a trick that will help.

TRY THIS TECHNIQUE TO RELEASE DIFFICULT EMOTIONS

When we experience difficult emotions, we tend to distract ourselves from them, closing ourselves off to personal growth and connection with others. The healthiest thing we can do with uncomfortable emotions about who we are, how we feel about that, or what others think about us is to move through them.

START WITH THE GLAND NEAR YOUR HEART

The thymus gland is the master gland of the body's immune system. It is located in the upper part of the chest, behind the breastbone. It sits right over the heart and is affected by emotional stress. The thymus is so powerful, and so connected to the rest of the body's energy system, that it can be used as a tool for releasing difficult emotions.

The next time you experience uncomfortable emotions, simply tap the thymus gland, using your fingertips, and breathe deeply. Aim for about an inch below the notch in your neck, where the knot of a tie would be, and tap on that general area with three or four fingers. The percussive effect of the tapping will help to gently process the emotion out of your body. Don't worry about tapping on the perfect spot, because even if you are not directly over the gland, the vibration will create a powerful clearing and calming effect. You can tap for several minutes or until you are feeling relief from stress, anxiety, self-blame, or any other of the negative emotions we are often plagued by.

Once you're free of all those things, you'll be more balanced, open, and ready to flow in the direction of love, without encumbrances. If you're able to lighten up a little and stretch your perceptions about what love should be, it'll be easier than ever to find, sustain, and enjoy the relationships you've always wanted, including the most important one of all--with yourself. (amybscher.com)

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Title Annotation:ADVICE
Author:Scher, Amy B.
Publication:Curve
Date:Jul 1, 2016
Words:1111
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