~ Some people will never give you what you want. "Expectations are the root of all heartache," a quote wisely spoken by William Shakespeare. You can always ask for what you want, but you still open yourself up to the possibility that you may not get it. You eventually come to realize that you can live without more attention, an apology, respect, adoration, or whatever it is you're longing to receive from someone else.
~ I once heard someone say that it takes courage to stand up for the love you really deserve. Courage. I had never thought about that word. I always thought it took self-awareness, self-respect, and self-love to do that (and it does). But yes, it also takes courage. A lot of people run full speed in the opposite direction when presented with the opportunity to actually be involved in something real. Being treated well feels so alien to them that they run back into the arms of the person who treats them like crap. Why? Because being treated like crap never really leads anywhere, and that feels safe to some people. They know they can come and go as they please and not have to face the responsibility of a real relationship. But you might be surprised by how much joy and fulfillment you can feel by giving the person who adores and respects you a chance.
~ Grief doesn't have an expiration date. Don't listen to people who tell you to "move on" when you're hurting. You might even randomly start hurting months or years after you thought you'd moved on for good. Pain needs to be felt, so just feel it.
~ Holding grudges poisons your soul and gives you back problems (for real). Let go. Forgive. Choose love.
~ Trust your instincts about people. If you have a bad feeling, stay away. If you have a good feeling, freaking go for it.
~ Leave the past in the past. Don't stalk your exes on Facebook to "see how they're doing." Don't badmouth someone who did something that pissed you off three years ago. Look at who you have standing right in front of you. Appreciate the present.
~ I like the idea of keeping your private life private. Don't give people too much to formulate an opinion on. Your relationship is yours and yours alone. Gossiping about your partner and giving away too many details takes the magic out of "you and me" and turns it into "you, me, and everyone else."
~ Feelings of inadequacy are normal in a relationship, but they don't actually mean that you're inadequate. Challenge your insecurities, and pull them up by their roots.
~ When you feel torn over whether or not to trust your head or your heart, consider trusting both. The voice of reason and the voice of desire can both teach us something.
~ Thoughtfulness really does count. Do thoughtful things for the people you love, and remember to give what you hope to receive. (I'm still working on this one.)
~ Love is so much more than the words you say. Love can be spoken through a long hug, a kiss on the hand, a smile, a greeting card, a random act of kindness---The list goes on and on.
~ It's okay to feel like half of a whole when you're separated from a loved one. Popular wisdom suggests that you don't need anyone and that you should feel whole right by yourself, but I somewhat disagree. It is normal human behavior to need a shoulder to lean on, an ear to listen, and a person to help you feel like more of who you are by simply being by your side. Needing someone doesn't make you crazy. We are born with the instinct and desire to mate with others and form emotional attachments.
~ Sometimes people will do and say things that make you angry and then manipulate you into thinking that you have no right to be. They will make you feel as though you should be happy for them, or that you should mind your own business, or that you should get over yourself, etc. But here's the thing: If you're angry, it's for a reason. There's always a root. You can either find the root and solve the conflict or choose to no longer associate with the people who make you angry.
~ Good friends are super hard to come by. Good friends that actually stick around over a long-term period of time are even harder. If you have someone in your life who makes an effort, cares about your well-being and happiness, doesn't talk shit behind your back, knows you better than you know yourself, and makes you feel like you can do and be anything, you have a damn good friend. Treat them like royalty because genuine, loyal friends deserve a gold medal.
~ Some people say that choosing to be single for an extended period of time is like a spiritual awakening. They take the time to learn how to love and care for themselves before they love and care for somebody else. Embrace the joys of being single until someone worth giving that up for comes along.