Life begins at the end of your comfort zone. You won’t find glory at the center of safety, but at its edge. You won’t find love at a place where you are covered, but in the space where you are naked. You gotta take some risks. You have to not only pick up the dice, but roll ‘em. So go ahead, take the gamble. You have nothing to lose except the chance to win. Life is not long enough to spend it on the sidelines.
If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.
by Bryant McGill
Listen, I know it is hard when you feel alone. There are many types of alone too. There is the type of alone, where your life is empty with no real friends or loves. There is also the type of alone where your life is full of people and yet you have no deep and meaningful connections or passion. Then there is the type of alone where people are coming and going and living their lives, and you feel like an invisible observer in an intersection, watching people who are happily passing by, living the life you think you want. Real loneliness can seem like a slow death, where you watch the flower of what you have to offer wilt and the petals drop one-by-one unnoticed. Then there is the worst kind of loneliness; a feral type of desperation that leaps at every person who pays attention to you and will-not let go. The healthy and happy people you want seem to run for their lives, while the damaged, lonely people grab-on with equal desperation in a bizarre death-spiral into the darkest of the dark.
But have you ever considered another type of loneliness; a good and healthy, happy loneliness? Do you dislike yourself so much that you can’t stand to be around you? What? It’s boring you say? Let me tell you, if you are bored it is only because you are a boring person. Oh, you just want some companionship? That seems reasonable. Are you a good companion to yourself? Loneliness is really a wonderful companion that can show us so much about ourselves and others. Loneliness will give you the greatest chance of ever having a beautiful relationship with another person.
If you put a couple in a room together, those two people, as the only creators in that room, have the power to create a literal heaven between those four walls. So why do so many people create a hell? Let’s simplify and remove one of the people. Even one person, alone in a room will often create a living hell for themselves. They will fill the space with their doubts, fears, addictions, blame, worries and desperation. Have you ever been that person? Being alone will show you who you really are, and if you cannot get-on positively as the sole master of your space in that room alone, then you can absolutely forget about it after you add another person. You had better start practicing being happy when you are alone. Sure. You want to be touched, inspired and made to feel alive. But a relationship is like a bridge where you meet other people half-way. That means if you want to be touched, inspired and made to feel alive, you have to be touching, inspiring and bring the fire of your aliveness to the union of your companionship. You must live what you wish to receive. Because we are always growing, life compounds and magnifies what is already in us. If you are miserable you grow in misery and if you are joyful you grow in joy. This makes self-love is the perfect soil from which to grow love.
"At the innermost core of all loneliness is a deep and powerful yearning for union with one’s lost self."
— Brendan Francis
You see, people have some really crazy ideas about love, friends and relationships. They have the absurd belief that their friends, children, family, lovers and companions can make them happy. But love is not about others; love is a practice of self-mastery. “What the hell does that even mean?”, you may ask. It means that love is by, for and about you, and it never had anything to do with another person. It means that the love you bring to the table, is a way of living that you have been practicing in your life — and that love can be needy, controlling, selfish, conditional and desperate, or it can be confident, open, giving, unconditional, and secure. Your love capability is something you cultivate within yourself. Loving is like any other art-craft where the masters have carefully practiced and where the novices have languished in their carelessness. This is why some relationships look so beautiful and some look so tragic — beauty belongs to the thoughtful; tragedy to the neglectful.
"The purpose of relationship is not to have another who might complete you, but to have another with whom you might share your completeness."
— Neale Donald Walsch
If your life is like a tragedy it is because you have been neglecting something — most likely yourself. All those happy people you see, they know something you don’t know. They know about a balanced type of relationship where they are selfish for the sake of others. You have to learn how to take care of yourself. Who you need, is you. It was always about and for you. You’re the one you’ve been looking for; you complete you. If you have never found yourself the best place to look is in your loneliness, and rock-bottom is even better. Quit looking “out there” for that magical “something” or “someone” to come and rescue you from your tragic loneliness. Do you want to know what people love? People love passion; they love people who are happy in themselves; they love people who are going places and doing things; people love people who are confident and secure, but most importantly people love most those who love themselves. If you want the perfect relationship, start with the one you have with yourself. If you make it right with yourself, it will be right with the whole world.
"The love that you search for is already within you. It’s not in another person. Through your practice, you have to reach into your own heart and soul and bring out this love and have value for it and grow it, pay attention to it and learn from it, and allow it to expand. When you do this, everything in the universe is going to come to you, because everything in the universe is looking for love."
— Swami Chetanananda
Article by Bryant McGill