Nothing in this world is more difficult than love. And nothing is more worth it.
Our media culture – with its happily ever after fairy tales – often creates the expectation that life is supposed to be like an endless day at Disney World. And nowhere does our media culture present a more skewed set of expectations than around intimate relationships. We are swayed to believe a great relationship is all sunshine and roses, despite the fact that most of us have witnessed firsthand the difficulties and disagreements our parents struggled through when we were kids.
Just as life isn’t perfect, intimate relationships aren’t either. They require effort and compromise. They require two people to practice patience and presence, and thoughtfully extend themselves for the sake of the other. They require us to redefine the fairy tale story of love that our media culture has attempted to brainwash us with.
It’s time to take a stand and acknowledge the fact that we’ve been fed lies. We’ve been told that love is just a feeling, but the reality is that love is an action – many actions. It’s continuous work. It’s something two people must commit to as a daily ritual.
When you’re able to accept this new reality, and get past the damaging lies about things needing to be perfect all the time, you make room for the true joy of engaging deeply in a great relationship, which holds a powerful, flexible space that widens itself to accommodate the necessary struggles.
Here are twelve tough truths about great relationships:
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- A soul mate is really just a loving partner who’s willing to work with you. – To say that one waits a lifetime for their soul mate to come around is a bit of a paradox. People eventually get tired of waiting, so they take a chance on someone, and by the powers of love and commitment they become soul mates, which takes a lifetime to perfect. [Read more…]