The ability to cultivate love seems like a strange thing when we are constantly being shown that love is a feeling projected on to us from someone else. Perhaps this was even something we were taught, or an extension of cultural norms such as the need to be married in order to validated within society. This of course only creates more confusion of what love is, and layers further issues around the deserving of love. And this time of year, only propagates these feelings.
If we can only experience love if someone else loves us – then what is that feeling inside of us? The feeling when our heart swells, butterflies in our tummy, a softening like melted sugar that runs through our insides. Sure, this may be triggered by a smile, a hug or even a gentle kiss, but what about when we experience these same feelings when no one else is around. What if we could cultivate these feelings without even the thought of another person or thing. Cultivating the feeling of love is something that Bruce Lipton PhD, has coined “the honeymoon effect” in his book of the same title. For me, this concept created a massive shift in how I understood love and experienced love.
First, we need to step outside of the need for romantic love for validation. Second, we need to let go of this egoic and ignorant idea that we don’t deserve love. We are love – there is no deserving or not deserving. Love isn’t a thing that is handed to us with our first kiss – that is media propaganda. Third, attune your attention to the visceral feeling of love.
Pause for a moment. Sit up tall, roll your shoulders back and take a deep breath in and slow breath out. Bring your hand to your heart and search for the sensation of your heart beating. Think back to one of your most precious memories of love and allow the experience of that to come back into your body. Perhaps you feel a little lighter, a little softer? Maybe a tingling in your belly, maybe a smile comes to your face. Continue to let this feeling build while the initial memory begins to dissolve. Cultivating the feeling of love until it expands right into your toes. The experience of love right here right now, love for the sake of love. Love, because it is a beautiful feeling. Let this experience imprint now. This is love. This is YOU.
Celebrate love with my At Home Retreat: Love Attracts Love. A 90min Yoga practice experience combining heart opening postures, breath work, mantras and meditation all aimed to cultivate the feeling of love within.