I just got back yesterday from a week and a half long trip to Paris. The city truly is breathtaking and the women, jaw-droppingly beautiful. There really is no better place to go for good wine, women and parties. To be entirely honest with you all, I didn't visit simply to explore the city — I have a friend who lives in the area and although we are not in any sort of relationship, I did go there to spend some time with her and to enjoy her company.
And…let's be honest…for the sex. French women know how to f*ck like few others; the sex really was phenomenal — but I digress. One night, my female companion, a handful of her friends and I went out and hit up some clubs.
After a few bottles in, I began to notice that I was distancing myself from the party and, inadvertently, from my friend. It's not that I was consciously separating myself from the group, but let's be honest: I was by no means sober. I had gotten lost in my own mind and in my thoughts — which happens more often than I'd like to admit — and I became entirely focused on myself and trapped in my own world.
I am sure that many of you experienced the same sort of sensation — you are with a man or woman whom you are attracted to and like very much, but find yourself unable to keep them as the focus of your thoughts and drift off towards your own egocentric tendency.
This got me thinking — at this point I had boarded a runaway train — what it means to love someone and the thoughts that go through one's head when experiencing such a phenomenon. When you are the focus of your own thoughts, there seems to be little room for anyone else. Sure, love is not simply the result of cognitive processes — it also involves a change in bodily chemistry.
Finding ourselves to be in love, our bodies respond and react chemically to the other's body. This coupled with the workings of our minds is what we call love. The body feeds off the mind and the mind feeds off bodily sensations, amplifying or diminishing the way that we feel about a person.
However, like I have said before, I cannot agree that falling or being in love is completely out of our own control; we may not be able to control the way that our bodies react (and even this is inconclusive), but we surely have some level of control over our thoughts — our thoughts being the main component in what decides whether or not and how intensely we love another.
For this reason, I have to believe that a huge factor in whether or not we can say that we are in love with someone depends on how able we are and how inclined we are to focus on that person. By this, I don't mean focus on their usefulness in regards to ourselves — how they can make us happy or how they make us feel — but rather how capable we are of focusing on what they want, on how they feel and on how we can better their success at happiness.
This is selflessness and I believe it is necessary for love to take form between any two people. It is easy to get lost in one's own head and to focus on the actions that the person holding our interest takes toward us. When we believe that we may be falling in love, we begin to dissect and investigate deeper into our feelings and, specifically, into how we believe that person feels toward us.
Being uncertain of the way someone feels toward you when you yourself know that you really like this person and are possibly falling for them is painful and can spark an almost obsessive nature within you. You are likely to begin to inspect their each and every action. How they speak to you. How they speak to others. How they look at you and how they interact with others around them. You begin to form hypotheses and analyze what you believe they must be thinking — all in regards to yourself. You are likely to notice that while you are there doing your best to solve them as you would a puzzle, they are simply enjoying their time and living in the moment.
This may snap you out of the world you had created, but it may also make you feel worse. Why is it that you are sitting, focusing on them this entire time while they are not paying you much mind? Why is it that you care about them so much and are attempting to figure out what you mean to them while they are just trying to have fun? This is obsession and many of us succumb to it without even knowing. While you believe that you are being selfless and are donating your time and thoughts to them, in actuality, you are being entirely selfish.
Your thoughts, while seemingly centered on her, are actually focused on how she feels about YOU. It reminds me of that punch line: “Enough about me. What do you think about me?” If we truly want to allow ourselves to love someone we must be as selfless as we possibly can. We must veer away from worrying about ourselves and what the person we are intimate with thinks about us. We have to stop ourselves from considering how we can be happy and how this person can make us happy, but instead center our thoughts on how we can make them happy. Are they having a good time? Are they enjoying the night and the party? Is he smiling and laughing? Is she sad or bored?
Having such thoughts will allow you to make a quick decision on how they are feeling and to gauge their level of happiness, allowing you to stop thinking and to start living in the moment. Love is meant to create new, exciting and interesting experiences. Love is meant to be enjoyed and shared — not dissected bit by bit and stressed over. If you want love to take seed and develop, then forget about you and just have fun.
Don't overthink things and worry about the way that he feels about you; what really matters is how you feel about them. If you love them then you love them — their reciprocating the love is not a necessity, it's only a plus. Many of us put so much emphasis on the reciprocation of our love that we fail to allow our own to flourish. We worry about the reciprocation of our love to the point that whatever love we felt turns into a nasty form of obsession. Love is meant to be lived, not contemplated over.
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