You’ll never receive love by withholding it.
Perhaps more than anything else, every single one of us wants to be loved. Tragically, most people don’t know how to approach love, and so the experience of love feels fleeting at best and unattainable at worst.
Love is the normal state of existence—the very essence of what we are. If it ever feels as though love is lacking, it is because we are blocking it.
We block love by withholding it. We know that the other person wants our love, and by withholding it through various forms of attack or attitudes of resentment, we try to teach a lesson. We believe that, by making things uncomfortable enough for the other person, that he or she gets it and changes. But even if the behavior does change (which is unlikely), you will not get what you really want; which is always the experience of more love.
Withholding only creates more withholding. You begin to believe that resentment and attack works, and so you do more of it. At the same time, you are teaching the other person that this is the way. So you both grow colder to each other, more resentful and even violent. How can love survive such a situation?
We also block love by failing to forgive ourselves and others. Forgiveness doesn’t mean that you always condone everyone’s behavior; rather, that you love the being on a level that is beyond the behavior. You recognize that we all make mistakes, and that the best way to undo error is always the loving response. The first person we need to forgive, categorically, is ourselves. Self-forgiveness unblocks love within us. Now it can flow freely as we extend that same forgiveness to others.
We also block love by limiting it. We set rules, we accept rules, we reject people for countless reasons, and we attack our partners with our jealousy. To forbid love in any form is to withhold it.
Love can only be lacking because of these and so many other tragic errors. We want perfect love, so we must learn to unblock it. This is what we continue doing here tomorrow and each day after that.