Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage – Lao Tzu
As someone who’s always looking to have better relationships and who has become the go to person for friends and acquaintances who are looking for a little love advice, I believe it’s only natural that I would write about relationships and most importantly why we choose certain relationships over others.
I believe in the “once upon a time” and the “happily ever after”, but I also believe there’s a whole world between those two moments. I also believe getting to the happily ever after and most importantly staying there is more than pretty Facebook posts or random smiling photos. Let’s face it, when someone points a camera at you, no matter how mad you are about something, you’ll still put on a good smile and look good. It’s about the wonderful commitment that to people make to love each other, to cherish each other, and to always want to make the other person happy.
But going back to why we are in relationships, why we choose that person to tell our most intimate thoughts to, or to share our life with and trust that no matter what happens they will always be there supporting us when we’re riding the wave and helping pick us up when we’re washed out on the shore. While most of us would love to believe that a good relationship will always be smooth sailing, the truth is we’re people, we’re flawed, we’re moody (especially us girls), we say the wrong thing, we hurt each other at times, and we have doubts. But then there are those times when the smile of the person you love literally brings tears of joy to your eyes, when they do this tiny little gesture that makes you see them in a new light, when at the end of a long day they come home and cuddle next to you to ask about your day.
The Buddhist view on relationships is that the love can only be as strong as your commitment. Love is an emotion, it will go up and down and at time it will depend on whatever else is going on in your physical body. But the commitment to love and to grow in that love is the strength that makes a relationship be stronger regardless of the outside circumstances.
The best relationships are the ones in which you’re growing every day, in which the very thought of your partner gives you wings and makes you want to be a better person. It’s where the drama of the day melts away because you know you’ll see that person at the end of it, when little things in your life remind you of them, when you feel you’re becoming a better person just by being around them. Roy Croft says “I love you, not only for what you are, but for what I am when I am with you. I love you, not only for what you have made of yourself but for what you are making of me.” If you can grow in your love and grow as a person just by having that person next to you, then you have found your one.
Look at the relationships you have in your life right now! Do they make you grow? Do they make you want to be a better person? Do you make them better? Do you have a commitment to love and to grow in that love?