“Love is patient, love is kind.” But love, the kind we share with another, requires courage. Courage to stand in the world of unknowns and harness the intimacy that comes with the practice of being authentic with one another. It requires something akin to standing in a room completely naked, baring our wounded egos, learned pretenses, deepest hurts and most griping fears and saying, “this is me…. all of me”, and knowing that what is seen, will be cherished, honored, and above all, that it will be safe.

Why then do so many of us stumble when we clearly desire this form of connection? Simply put, we hide from ourselves.
Life is a challenge for everyone Our paths from the time we are young children often teaches us to put up some form of guard or false mask when we feel hurt by the opinions of others, especially those we care for. We learn to hide our weak moments and suppress them as we do our inner knowing further distancing ourselves from what intuitively feels “off”. We come to distrust and question our inner voice and thus muffle its pleadings. We come to believe that our “true self” in all its expressions will be rejected, because it doesn’t quite meet the expectations we falsely come to recognize as “the grade”.

What we may not acknowledge, or want to, is that somewhere in between the silent spaces, hearts always know truth. When another is not wholly present, spirit feels this. Our hidden hurts, judgments, and self- criticism will surface and beg us, once again, to allow truth in.

The degree that we can be intimate with another is the degree we have learned to be intimate with ourselves. It truly does start with us. Can we love ourselves patiently? Can we look at ourselves without judgment? Can we rise above our fears knowing that we are working against the power of our deepest vulnerabilities but still believe it is worth it? Accessing this place of intimacy requires a tremendous amount of self-work because so much in our society pulls us away from nature….our own and our natural world.

When love is what you want to have in your life, consider that it doesn’t start with what you will find outside of yourself. That form of love will never endure the test of time. Start within. Bring intimacy into every interaction and experience with yourself and get to know your fears, judgments and hurts. Meet them, give them a voice and allow them to simply be.

Awareness alone sheds light on them and diminishes their control over you. When this happens acceptance, kindness and love for your own truth will attract the very energy you yourself have created….the kind of love that is intimate, authentic and unequivocally safe.

Author's Bio: 

Odette Worrell is a certified Holistic Health Counselor, certified by the American Association of Drugless Practitioners (AADP), a Reiki Master Practitioner, Certified Hatha Yoga Asana Teacher (200RYT), Certified Living Foods Chef, and founder of Find Your Organic Soul.

Odette's work encompasses supporting and empowering individuals to regain their physical health, improve the quality of their lives, and reach their personal goals.

Odette and Find Your Organic Soul offer newsletters, online health, self-growth classes, retreats, and one-on-one health counseling consultations.

Visit www.findyourorganicsoul.com