Last year I wrote a post proclaiming to the world that I wanted more from my life! I have been on my own journey of self-awareness and in search of real people. People that are curious, kind and aren’t scared of being a bit vulnerable. Is that you?
Living love is an important first step when you want more from your life. I talked about how and they why showing some love to #1 (you!). If you missed it, catch it here. How have you been practising self-care? Let me know in the comments of that post, I’m sooooo curious!
I’m pumped to keep talking life lessons and if you are here that tells me at the very least that you’re curious. And that’s a good place to start :).
I want to share some lessons that I was taught as a kid and how I have found them to be straight.up.LIES! More importantly, I want to share with you the new shit that has replaced my old school ways of thought.
Let us start with the gold rule.
Hands up if this was a constant lesson during your childhood. Is this still a lesson you subscribe to?
I think it still holds some truth, BUT if I wanna connect and be a good friend, partner, person overall for and with someone – there has to be more to it.
My OG Kid Lesson: Golden Rule, Treat others as you want to be treated
New Life Lesson: The Platinum Rule, Treat others as they want to be treated.
I walked into my workspace on my birthday to find that my friend had decorated and wanted to make sure that everyone knew to stop in. There were streamers and balloons hanging from the ceiling and huge arrows pointing above my head that read “IT’S MY BIRTHDAY!”
My friend that was celebrating my birthday was coming from a place of the golden rule. She wanted to celebrate my birthday with me how she would have enjoyed it. Her heart was in a good place but having “all eyes are on me” is the easiest way for me to go into a panic attack. Instead of feeling happy that someone put in the effort to do all of this for me I felt anxious, awkward and tense the entire day.
Have you heard of the 5 Love Languages quiz?
I found this quiz to be so different and intriguing compared to the others one I had done. The focus wasn’t on what you are doing, or saying but more of what others can do for you. The short quiz gives you a break down of what you need from other people in order to feel loved.
It is mind altering to learn that even though you might think you are showing love it could be completely going over their head!
The 5 love languages are:
- Words of Affirmation
- Acts of Service
- Receiving Gifts
- Quality Time
- Physical Touch
This is how I scored
Same friend, same birthday day. I walked into a room to find a small surprise lunch with a small group of people and a bunch of my favourite foods from our hood. Now this, this almost made me cry. Give me the quality time over reviving gifts 100% of the time.
Looking at my top love languages quality time came in at the very top while receiving gifts is at the very bottom. This is why I had different reactions to both surprises. It wasn’t that I was ungrateful for one, it was just not the way that I need to feel loved and appreciated.
Thinking in the platinum rule is also a good place to start with empathy.
Instead of empathy, it was sympathy that was taught to me from an early age. It was how you connected with someone and showed them that you care. Just like the golden rule, it seemed very surface level to me even as a kid.
When you are in a tough spot and you share your woes with someone and they hit you with a classic Pinterest worthy quote do you have a gigantic urge to punch that person straight in the face?
These things make you stronger!”
“When a door closes, somewhere a window opens”.
I remember my teenage angst days and adults would tell me “You don’t even know! There is so much life out there still for you!” I would just roll your eyes and curse them under my breath for not understanding how I feel! They spent a lot of time giving out advice but not taking the time to actually listen.
That’s how I see sympathy, it’s that adult lecture that I just don’t have time for. It can come off as ingenuine and even annoying. Even though we are all super duper duper different we are still people to the core. And most of us just want to feel loved and accepted. When we use these types of sympathy quotes we are trying to be the “fixer”. We are trying to find a relatable experience so that they know that you have felt it too.
I don’t want your opinion. Just that love and acceptance.
It is ok to take the time to feel shitty, to be upset, to not be ok. And if I muster up enough courage to tell you a hardship I just want to feel acknowledged and not brushed off.
Childhood Lesson: Sympathy – feeling for someone else
New Life Lesson: Empathy – feeling with someone else
This has taken a lot of practice and I’m still working on it so I know that you can do this too.
One of the best ways that you can live with more love is to understand and practice empathy.
Living with more love can also be done by practising empathy and it starts with trying to understand other people and accepting them as they are.
Think of the people in your family. Is there someone that frustrates you to no end? They never take your great sounding advice and you can never agree?
Next time you want to show your appreciation, love for someone. Think about doing it in a way that will notice and accept it.
By focusing on these new lessons I have been able to create more authentic relationships with the people around me.
If you find yourself struggling with a certain someone remember that you can only control yourself! So tell the frustration to SCRAM so you can make space to take the time to change your point of view.
Last week I talked about how I love doing personality quizzes! If you are doing quizzes like me there are a few next steps that I want you to consider.
Share your results with the people that are close to you. It has been a great conversation starter and it has been reinforcing to share my results. It also stirs curiosity in people which is my jam.
After doing the love language quiz I shared my results with my partner. It started a conversation about what we both need in order to feel love. This is important info to have!
After taking a quiz I take the time to read the results that don’t describe me at all. If I want to have better and more meaningful relationships with people I need to look for viewpoints other than mine so I can others how they need.
Have you taken the Love Languages quiz? Let me know in the comments and share your results!