"Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it." - Rumi
I’d always heard that love is our true nature, but for whatever reason, I processed that more on a logical level instead of really feeling it in my bones. But the first time I saw the quote above by the poet Rumi, things clicked in a new way.
It was included in a presentation for my Spiritual Psychology training at The University of Santa Monica, and as soon as it popped on screen there was a collective “Ahh…” in the room. I knew I wasn’t alone in feeling moved by Rumi’s wise words.
LOOKING FOR LOVE
As I began the emotional process of working through my own patterns related to love, I realized I had been looking for it externally in all kinds of places and especially in other people — in partners, in friends, with family, and even amongst coworkers.
Like many people, I wanted to be liked, accepted, and feel a sense of validation and true belonging in the world. I was so busy seeking love outside of myself that I'd allocated minimal time or energy tending to the love already present within me.
There's another Rumi quote that captures this sentiment beautifully:
"You wander from room to room
Hunting for the diamond necklace
That is already around your neck!"
That was basically my relationship with love. I was looking for it everywhere without realizing it was right there all along.
I figured I had a pretty good relationship with myself, decent enough at least...but truth be told, I was worried that once I opened up the floodgates and clearly saw what was holding me back, I would feel worse about myself or stuck in the muck of it all.
Dissolving the walls and barriers I built also seemed like a ton of work, and I didn't know how to even go about that process. I did, however, know that it would involve shining a spotlight on some of the less pretty parts of myself.
I thought it’d be easier and safer to pretend my bad memories, wounds, insecurities, and flaws didn’t exist. Our egos are tricky like that! They tell us that putting our guard up (even with ourselves, not to mention other people) protects us, when really, doing so suffocates our souls.
My ego also tricked me into believing the process of dissolving walls would be too painful – Not worth it! Nope, no thanks! – yet my soul yearned for deep love and on some level trusted that it was available to me. Eventually my longing outweighed my fear of the unknown enough to roll up my sleeves, and get to work.
THE BEST USE OF ENERGY...EVER!
What I discovered is that finding and removing the barriers to one’s heart is far less uncomfortable – and takes far less energy – than maintaining them.
Just think about that for a moment. If you feel like you’re putting a guard up in certain relationships (or all relationships) in order to protect yourself, it’s taking up precious energy on a consistent basis. Like, an every day kinda basis.
What if you put all of the energy you’re currently expending trying to guard your heart PLUS all of the energy you’re using up searching for love outside of yourself into simply loving yourself more? Loving yourself enough to find the barriers within, and begin the process of releasing them?
Because, trust me: THAT is a valuable expenditure of energy, and one that will give you a return on your investment for the rest of your life! I mean, doesn't that seem worth it?
Are you ready to unleash the ocean of love within you?
It’s been there all along, and it's there right now, patiently waiting for an invitation to participate more fully in your life.
P.S. If you're ready to unleash the love within but find yourself sitting here like, "That sounds great and all, but how in the world do I go about doing that?" ...that's where I come in! Receiving support and guidance in the process of dissolving your barriers to love can be so valuable. If you're curious to learn more about what that looks like, feel free to message me here.