The definition of love is different for everyone. Not everyone experience love the same way or even know what it means to experience love. We often tell our parents and significant others that we love them. However, do we really know what it means? Love goes beyond just a feeling. There are certain things that just happen when you are in love. Many of us think that if we put someone first, then we are showing love towards them. Making someone a priority and loving them are two different things. Sometimes we can make someone a priority because we do not love ourselves. If we do not love ourselves, then we definitely cannot love someone else. How do we know what love is? That is a question that everyone should ask themselves. Love is beyond a physical and emotional feeling. Love is making sure that you know the importance of something in your life to which you are prioritizing it in a responsible and healthy manner. This means that if you love yourself, you should always prioritize an make yourself the most important thing in your life.
This concept is something that I have always struggled with. I thought love meant giving your all to someone and making them a priority. I believed that when you say you love someone, it means that you should drop everything in order to make sure that they are taken care of. However, that is not the case and if anyone makes you feel like that, then they do not love you. Throughout the course of friendships and relationships I have had, I found myself giving a lot. I was giving a lot of time to individuals who were not pouring into me. I would listen to all of their problems as well as assist them financially if I could. In other words, I was trying to fix everyone else because I was broken inside. I was not happy with myself because I did not know who I was. I do not remember who said this, but I remember this quote that states, “If you do not know who you are, then you do not know where you are going.” That quote is so true. Because I did not know who I was, I was headed down a dark long lonely road. It is so funny that many of the individuals that I gave my time to, I do not talk to anymore. As a matter of fact, I would not know if they were dead or alive if it was not for social media. That is how irrelevant some people are to our lives. We put them on a pedestal and think they are really important parts of our lives only to find out that they do not exist to us anymore.
A while back, one of my friends told me that love is about sacrifices. How can you know a healthy way of sacrificing if you do not know what to sacrifices? You cannot just give everything you have because you will become nothing. That is something I had to learn. Although it took me a while, I am glad I have comprehended this at 24 rather than in my late 30’s. I have accepted the fact that individuals will get mad when you do not do what they want you to. I have accepted the fact that people will call you selfish when you put yourself first. I am proud to say that I am selfish. This will allow me to get to where I want to be so that I can help those that are in need when I can. I cannot sit around and listen to everyone’s problems or keep pouring into them, only to become empty on the inside. Life throws a ton of things our way already. It is important to take care of your mental take to take care of yourself.
Realizing how important I was was my first step to loving myself. I realized that I had to set boundaries. That meant using the word “NO”. In my entire time on this earth, I have not said the word “No” as much as I have in the past couple of months. I have realized that you are the only one that can protect you. If you do not set those boundaries, then you will continue to be unhappy. I know that in order for me to remain mentally stable that I need adequate amount of rest. Therefore I cannot talk to my friends about their issues all night long. I recenlty had a friend call me at 12:30 AM. I told them not to call my after 10:00 PM MT, because I have a job to go to in the morning. It may sound rude, but if I am up that late on a call then I am not going to be able to perform well at my place of employment. If I am not performing well at my place of employement, my boss is not going to care that I was up talking to a friend all night. Again, its all about taking care of yourself. You have to set the same boundaries at work. I have learned to say that word at work as well. I am not superman. If I am not taking control of my work load, then I will become overwhelmed thus pushing me further back into knowing my self worth.
Ultimatly, I fell in love with myself when I was able to spend more time with me. I have learned to take all of the time that is important for me. That means putting my phone on “Do not disturb” when I am meditating, writing a blog like this one, or simply not wanting to talk. This also means taking my money that I have worked hard for, and spending it on myself first before anyone else. I have said this more than once, but it is so important to be selfish so that you can become selfless. You cannot change your life to be what everyone wants you to be for them. You have to be what you can, and if they do not like it then they can kick rocks. Nine times out of ten, they are not going to make the same sacrifices for you.