Unconditional love. It’s a common phrase, and something all of us likely aspire to practice. Sometimes the idea seems clear and simple while at other times it can be deeply confusing. We may ask ourselves, what does it really mean? And in some circumstances we ask, is it even possible?
Look it up and you’ll see it defined as: affection without any limitations, or love without conditions. Now, think about our range of human experiences, and I suspect that’s where some of the confusion comes into play. It’s easy to equate these words with accepting unkind, disrespectful or even harmful behaviour.
But whenever our focus is only on loving other people or giving ourselves away freely without any boundaries, we’re more likely living from people pleasing than an honest expression of unconditional love. One thing that’s clear in these situations is that we’re leaving ourselves out of the equation.
Elizabeth Kubler-Ross says the ultimate lesson all of us have to learn is unconditional love, which includes not only others but ourselves as well. It is essential to remember that unconditional love starts with you. In giving it to yourself first, you can then extend it to others in ways that honour both of you.
You aren’t going out in search of a new kind of love; rather, you’re simply expanding what already exists within you. As Anita Moorjani so beautifully reminds us, unconditional love is our birthright and there’s nothing we need to do to earn it. This is simply who and what we are.
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