Radical, Sensitive, Thinking, Aware, Emotional, Alone, Happy…I would sum up the journey of self-discovery in more or less these words. Discovering yourself is such a dynamic and continuous phenomenon because you are constantly exposing yourself to different situations and people. At the same time, to your greatest surprise you will also discover yourself responding and reacting very differently to the same situation with different people involved. However, when you talk about self-discovery in respect to a love relationship, it is quite complex but interesting.
Love in itself is only an emotion, a magnificent one. It changes the way you look, feel, perceive and accept things. You are willing to travel that extra mile against all odds, because it is compelling. It is your choice. You are destined to meet certain people, but what you do after that is purely a matter of free will. And sometimes a leap of faith, an unearthly conviction, and an abstract gravity pushes you into a free fall of love with someone. And what a fall it is! Absolutely uplifting. But like any other emotion, love needs a journey to be lived, expressed and felt. And in this terrific journey you can come across a very defining realization about yourself… You love someone but you love yourself as much. It’s an amazing thing. It gives you a perspective about yourself, about who you want to be.
There are basically two things that make you up, belief system and value system. And each person has his own of both. But where belief system is very active, constantly changing and ever evolving; the value system is more like the roots to keep you stable and grounded. As much as it is blissful to be in love and to be loved, you give a lot of your heart, mind and soul to experience that ecstasy. When you give in so much, you undoubtedly receive bountiful as well. However, during this trade off you might undergo a lot of changes in your belief system finding yourself anew. Assume you love someone dearly and divinely but it is outside the accepted societal moorings. But to you it is acceptable as per your belief system. However, this true but unorthodox love might be extremely hurtful, if not wrong, to others – your parents, a friend or a spouse. So you might find yourself standing at a crossroad, not sure of who you are becoming or others’ perception of you. And when such doubts cloud your good sense, it might be appropriate to scale yourself up against your value system.
“No one is responsible about how others feel or choose to react; every joy or misery is self-inflicted. Only you choose and control your state of mind”. No matter how informed we are of these pearls of wisdom, we are amateurs in this art of living. And so by this logic, you will be affected, highly affected by what others think of you and what you think of yourself. You might not be guilty or repentant of loving someone as a trespasser but you cannot accept yourself as a callous selfish spoiler. This image is not exactly to your liking of perception, and so it pinches you of embarrassment and stings of loathsome. Despite the tempest of love in your heart and its enchantment in your mind, you might contemplate how far you want to love someone, before you reach the tipping point where it pushes you out of your comfort value zone. When you near that point, you might want to reconsider. And reconsider not whether you love the other or not, but if you want to go on.
When you consider and choose loving yourself over loving the other, you do not turn off the love button and expect everything gets over. It does not happen. You only decide to call off the rest of the journey and forego all those jaunts of awesomeness in between. You do not stop loving, you stop living the love. You give up the beautiful journey not because it is wrong or you are forced to, you give it up because you love yourself enough. Enough that you cannot change your intrinsic character for it. It will be an overwhelming revelation to your own self and if it’s a shared experience with your loved one, it can be such an epiphanic and empathetic moment of self-discovery for you both.
Loving yourself isn’t being self-centric; it’s about valuing yourself above situations and people. Taking charge of your life, opening the doors of your heart to let people in, but not shutting yourself out. A strong core system to me is a lot about compassion and empathy. When you empathize with another being, you also empathize with yourself. You aren’t harsh upon your own weaknesses. Because when you will try to walk this new unbeaten road alone your resolute will waver, your happiness which was dependent will be trampled, and it will hammer your heart to give up a loved one. But you give yourself time to see it through and learn through it – finding and testing your mental and emotional limits.
And so when you set off on this solo love journey, you will in time come across your happy side suddenly somewhere. It’s not going to be a constant vibe of course but nevertheless it’s liberating in its moments. It’s just being mindful but effortless. As succinctly as Osho reflects – BE…DON’T TRY TO BECOME. And this “JUST BE” is exactly the moment; you will fall in love with yourself differently. You will fall in love with your independent happiness. And it’s a beautiful thing to happen. It is beautiful to be in love, and even more beautiful to live the love… but living the love with somebody is not always your option.
So, I love me. Could be your greatest discovery…