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Have we become so jaded that we approach love as a form of power play?  We gauge each move and see whether the other person responds and we weigh our next move accordingly and see whether it would secure us the leverage we wish to prevail in the game? This form of approach is already dubious even outside the realm of romance, because the crafty shrewdness undermines honestly, honour, integrity, and what more, the highest of all virtues, love.

We are so uncomfortable at losing power or control over any situation that if we so much as express more emotion than the other and it is not reciprocated, we feel that we have not made the ‘right’ moves and it confers power upon the other over us.  Perhaps, in a manner of speaking, this is true.  At a base level, a love relationship is not immune to politics and plays for dominance, but this sort of approach demeans what it truly means to be in love with someone.

How averse are we to being hurt that we are willing to protect ourselves at any cost–even from ourselves or from someone else who may break down our walls and love us? There is nothing wrong with loving another, what causes us pain is the expectation that the love would be requited and it need not be. Yes it would be all the lovelier if the love was reciprocated, but it need not be.

We are capable of truly loving all by our lonesome, as sad as it might be.  We may only hope but we may not expect that the other be able to or should be capable of loving us back in the same manner or with the same intensity.  When we love, we must remember that it should be with no strings attached, otherwise, it detracts from the essence of love which gives freely without expecting another in return–though perhaps hoping for reciprocation.

(c) Niconica 2013

 

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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

 

In this increasingly busy and complex world where constant movement and action is abound, being helpless is one of the worst circumstances to find ourselves in–and this applies most especially in the realm of romance.  We can only do as much because beyond a certain point, we would be stalker quality already–and this is not a designation we should find ourselves with or even come close to being.

We can keep on seeking a reaction from the person whom we fancy by reaching out through messaging or even phone calls, but there is a point where we must stop working so hard because it might be that the person is just not that interested in us and yet unable to rudely dismiss and reject us and they find themselves having to endure our bids for their attention.

We cannot force anyone to fancy us or to regard us in a mutually romantic manner–as much as we wish we could–short of a love spell, which is not worth the trouble it eventually causes. Yes, we must admit that this situation–when we fall for someone–puts us in a vulnerable position and we are wont to feel helpless in the throes of limerence or romantic affection for a person.

We might as well acknowledge the undesirability of finding ourselves in the embarrassing position of feeling that our love is unrequited–as well as the excruciating pain of feeling helpless. Yet, we must not do anything to force their hand; because it behooves us to respect ourselves in this manner.

Therefore, if they do so choose to come forward and respond to or initiate contact, we would then know that it is of their own volition, and not because we have trapped, guilted, or otherwise manipulated them into doing so.  If they don’t, then we must bear and grin the unfortunate situation because the truth is that most things are out of our control, and the sooner that we accept this painful fact, the sooner we can move on with our lives.

(c) Niconica 2013

 

Limerence is an involuntary state of mind which results from a romantic attraction to another person combined with an overwhelming, obsessive need to have one’s feelings reciprocated.”  This aforementioned quote comes from Wikipedia.  It is a concept which I have recently come across over a week ago.  It is an interesting phenomenon explaining what can commonly be attributed as a “crush” or “infatuation” without immaturity as a factor, and strangely enough, it can almost be considered a mental condition–and takes the romance out of attraction and “falling in love.”

It is strange to find oneself in the throes of unreciprocated feelings and obsessive preoccupation with a person whom one had been neutral towards before and find a clinical and scientific description of one’s experience and yet despite an intellectual understanding of one’s experience, be unable to extinguish the feelings for the person whom one fancies.  By nature, the involuntary nature of the feelings leaves us helpless, we can endeavour to avoid the person in order to limit or remove the stimuli from further engulfing us in the vicious cycle.

We must find ways to occupy our thoughts and cope with the situation until the unwanted intrusive thoughts of the person is no longer experienced and we are able to find ourselves unaffected by the mention of their name, their presence, or any communique from them.  Meanwhile, we must contain ourselves from badgering the person despite the desperate desire for our feelings to have our feelings reciprocated–or at the very least for our feelings and our presence to be acknowledged.

We must also not fool ourselves with the perennial excuse that we would like to be “just friends” with them because in all reality, we will just be extending the emotional torment and feeding on false hopes that they might change their minds.  Being “just friends” with them will further the addiction towards the person and will only be detrimental to us when the feelings are not reciprocated, which is why we have found ourselves in this undesirable state of mind in the first place.

We must find a way to detach ourselves and move forward–even if it is a step at a time.  It will be the only way where we may save ourselves from further emotional hell and live to love another day–perhaps in a more healthy and mutually reciprocated manner.

(c) Niconica 2013

Here’s another winner, folks!  Just what the doctor ordered… Better Love Next Time by JM Kearns is a fun, interesting, and moreover, relevant, read. There are a lot of books about falling in love and recovering from break-ups, but this one encompasses both and acknowledges the detrimental effects past relationships have on us which may cause us to mess up future relationships.

Better Love Next Time deals with the intricacies of infatuation, compatibility, and how to get out of our own way. Everyone who has loved and been hurt or have had a painful relationship in the past and yet wants to give love a go will find a wealth of knowledge in these pages.

However, reading and applying the knowledge are altogether two different things… we would have a lot to gain if we were to be honest with ourselves, not engage in any form of denial, and have the determination to apply the necessary remedy to our love life and romantic decisions.

(c) Niconica 2011*

*does not apply to image/s

So, we’ve finally gotten over ourselves (or perhaps someone else) and reckon that it’s time to look for love. Perhaps, we’ve finally gotten our ducks in a row or got sick of waiting for our ducks to get in a row–or something of the sort.  The point is, we’re sick and tired of waiting around for love, and finally we announce our intent to the universe, “I’m now ready for love!”

The Universe will respond–oh yes it will.  And it will tell us, “Seek and you shall find.” (Or some sort of similar nonsense.) And we start looking–high and low, near and far, here and there… And eventually, we find out that… Love hides in the strangest places!  Oh, yes it does. It will be unexpectedly expected or expectedly unexpected. Nevertheless, it will surprise us… sometimes, we don’t realize it until we are so far in to even get out safely.

(c) Niconica 2011*

*does not apply to image/s

A Possible Logo for Love 101?

So we’ve survived studying languages, maths, and sciences, and even after the arduous efforts of completing our studies, we find ourselves completely lost about love and emotions in real life. How about if a subject called Love 101 was taught alongside all the basics of reading, writing, and arithmetic?

If “Love 101” doesn’t suffice as the title, perhaps “Emotional health 101″ can be considered as an umbrella course which would encompass “Love 101”? (As our topic for today is “Love 101”, I will endeavor not to digress to much into the macro topic of Emotional Health–let’s leave that for another time, shall we?)

Now, what would this course include? As an introduction, as with any product or equipment which we purchase and/or any machine we operate, there should be a legal clause which protects one from breaking one’s heart and incapacitating one’s mind as we are warned about protecting our limbs or any other various body parts from being torn or otherwise damaged.

Caution: Heart Fracture/Damage Possible

If children’s toys now carry some warning or another about the hazards which it might cause if not used properly, how come we had to learn about similar cautions to our heart the hard way? If only they had taught us all these in school at an early age, with continued education as we progressed from K-12 then wouldn’t we feel far more prepared?

(c) Niconica 2011*

*does not apply to images

Note: This is the first in a series of Love 101 blog entries… Stay tuned!

Finding Love

If only finding love were as easy as illustrated in the photo above, wouldn’t it be wonderful? We could just focus on the page and gradually we’d be able to find L-O-V-E and get a red marker and capture it. We’ve always been taught that there is a way to achieve what we want through concentrated effort–if only it applied to the ever elusive “amore.”

A Push of a Button

If only it were this easy–that was just push a button and we’d be able to find love… I’m not contesting that there are many methods for finding love… I’m contesting the assumption that love can ever be found.  Again, back to the first paragraph where I state (in so many words) that love is not a product of mere focus or concentrated effort.

If only it were that easy –then people would have found true love left, right, and center… for there certainly is no lack of people who are seeking it.  However, seeking for something does not automatically entail finding it. As much as we would like to think that we have control over a lot of things–it certainly does not apply to love.  True love does not appear as a result of merely desiring it or applying effort to look for it.

Love Appears Unexpectedly

Love cannot be found… instead, it finds us.  That is the irony of the situation, we keep on looking and searching for it and it eludes us… It comes when it does and it does the finding/seeking.  Love finds us.  We do not find it–as much as we would like to think so and take the credit for it.  Perhaps, it’s time to sit back, relax, and let this happy accident chance upon us.

(c) Niconica 2011*

*does not apply to the images

A lot of time and effort has been expended wondering about the nature of love and the reasons for love – and there are as many explanations are there are blades of grass in a field.  They are myriad and inconclusive.

Each definition carries a grain of truth – but not the whole truth and it depends on the people involved and the nature of their experiences.

All this would go to show that there is no good reason for falling in love – people just do.  People fall in love for all sorts of reasons which they are unable to comprehend or make sense of.

Falling in love is irrational and should be recognized as such since at times – there are a million good reasons for falling in love and yet we don’t; while during other times, there are no good reasons present for falling in love with someone and yet we find ourselves swimming in love’s embrace without knowing quite how or why.

Love is illogical and it just happens.  When it finds us, we have no choice but to either surrender to it – or resist with all our might… only to succumb to it in the end.

Happy Heart’s Day!

(c) Niconica 2011*

*does not apply to the images