We have become so sophisticated with so many facets of our lives that it has spilled over to the realm of love and dating.  We have become so versed with saving our faces and advancing our own interest that we have found many ways of being defensive when it comes to relating with another in the realm of love and romance so that we minimise our losses and are able to retract immediately and safely save our faces if it seems that the other is not on the page as us.

We become so obsessed with winning the dating ‘game’ that we lose sight of the bigger picture altogether.  We have convinced ourselves that we date and love in order to advance our self-interest and gain the most advantage without exposing ourselves or being unduly vulnerable or hurt.  If we think about it, this strategy almost sounds like the way we would undergo negotiations for business or even a strategy which might apply to warfare, and it is up for debate whether this is the best way to go about falling in love.

We cannot truly love when we are more obsessed with winning and preserving our own image.  Love entails a certain vulnerability and it is risky up to the point that it may actually be so painful that we may wonder whether we would survive a heartbreak.

We may see someone and wish to gauge whether they love us more and we may employ tactics which would assure us that they love us more or that we would not be hurt, we may also wish to ascertain their emotions for us before we surrender our own.  It is but prudent, yet at the same time, it robs the spontaneity and the raw authenticity which true fiery and passionate love is characterised by.

Love at its purest form is unguarded and undefended.  How often can we say that we have loved like this? Perhaps, we may only recall our adolescent days when we did not know any better–this was the only time wherein we loved with abandon–the first and perhaps even the last time we allowed ourselves to be carried away by our emotions, only to be destroyed by it.

After the first debilitating heartbreak, we start to employ more armour and adapt more defence mechanisms so that we may not experience the destruction and the pain we have gone through the first time around.  It definitely does have its uses, it protects us from completely falling apart and allows us to function without being destroyed.

However, it also takes away the raw beauty of love–the authenticity which is inherently unprotected.  When did we suddenly regard dating and love as a game or a battle where we must win at all costs and make sure that the ‘opponent’ surrenders or submits before we do?  It is true that the person who loves the most is at the mercy of the person who loves less but at the same time, the person who loves the most experiences love in a more genuine manner.

By all means, in business or in our careers, we must strive to ‘win’ and ‘prevail’ but love is not a competition wherein devious strategies would benefit the players.  Love is not even a terrain wherein winning would necessarily benefit anyone.  Sometimes when we are so calculated in the realm of love and even if we feel that we have secured victory by guarded and cautious moves, we have actually lost.

In our unhealthy obsession with winning in the realm of romance, we might actually cheat ourselves out of a wonderful soul-searing and life-changing experience called true love, which entails that we put down all our defences and is counter-intuitive to our notion of self-preservation.

(c) Niconica 2013

 

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