The most important aspect of being human is the relationship that we have with others. We are connected to our loved one, our family, our friends, our colleagues, our community, our world, through the relationships that we hold with others. When relationships are sound, we are happy. When there is a break in relations, it can eat and eat at us and lead us to feelings of anxiety and depression.
Romantic relations are one of the most difficult to navigate and the ones that occupy most of our thoughts. As Rumi acknowledges in the poem below, when we are in love, even the most minutiae is vitally important to us.
“I want to see you.
Know your voice.
Recognize you when you
first come 'round the corner.
Sense your scent when I come
into a room you've just left.
Know the lift of your heel,
the glide of your foot.
Become familiar with the way
you purse your lips
then let them part,
just the slightest bit,
when I lean in to your space
and kiss you.
I want to know the joy
of how you whisper
It is therefore incredibly difficult to maintain a balanced perspective and to find the time to do all the work at school and home that we need to do without becoming distracted. When you are with your loved one, you can stay up together all night, and when you are apart you can stay up all night thinking about them too. First love is one of the most beautiful and profound experiences you will ever have. And your first experience of love is one that is likely to colour the rest of your life. So it is important to get it right.
It is said that one does not choose love, which may be the case, but we can choose how we respond to it - in a healthy manner or in a manner which is unhealthy in the respect that we loose sight of who we are and try to manipulate the relationship, either for our own or the other person's advantage.
Often we get so lost in the relationship, trying to be something that we are not, that we become so apart from our true self and find ourselves without an anchor and flailing about confused, and vulnerable.
In all situations of love and relationships - of which there are thousands - the most profound way that you can deal and manage with them is to be yourself. Being authentic gives you the power to work with and on the relationship, giving it the time and the energy needed to be meaningful for yourself and the other person.
Here is a fabulous book that will help you to first learn to love yourself, and from that strong anchor, you will be able to love others.
Remember though, that managing relationships is a life long endeavour, no two are the same and there are no quick fixes. But working from the place of who you are and what you are about, is the best way to begin.