Have you ever been in a relationship with someone but not trusted their love for you?
While you knew they loved you, for some reason, you just couldn’t trust the stability of that love.
That’s because their love felt fickle. Like a tumbleweed blowing in the wind.
You know how they say that you can never really lose someone that was truly yours in the first place?
Well, this type of love has you feeling insecure. You have a hard time relaxing within the relationship because you have doubts about your true alignment and connection to this person.
In your heart of hearts, you feel like you’re capable of losing this person to somebody else better suited to them. You worry they will have an epiphany one day and suddenly realize that you aren’t right for each other. You worry about allowing them to be completely free to roam and grow outside the relationship because you fear they may grow or change away from you.
This leads to constant anxiety, frustration, and instability for your emotions in the relationship. Even if you’re madly in love, and believe they love you too, the relationship and their feelings just seem fragile.
Sometimes this feeling of insecurity is because of a legitimate misalignment in the relationship or emotional inequity. Then other times, this insecurity is because of the person’s lack of stability as a person. This type of love is what I call ‘fickle love’ or ‘flakey love’.
If someone’s not grounded in who they are as a person and what they want out of life, it’s impossible to trust and feel grounded in their love for you.
Even if you know they have strong feelings for you…you still can’t trust the depth of those feelings. You feel they’re too uprooted in who they are to be able to build genuine roots in love with another person.
People who are not grounded and rooted in who they are and what they want out of life, are only capable of flakey love. Love that is self-servicing to their needs, rather than a healthy and balanced relationship.
This is a lesson I had to learn the hard way: falling for someone who was at an extremely unstable juncture in their life.
I remember at the time she was lost, trying to figure out her career and life path, and she kept coming up with new epiphanies for what she wanted to do.
When the person doesn’t have a strong semblance of career path…always changing their mind about what they want to do…then it’s nearly impossible to build roots with this person because you have no idea if you’re both actually headed in the same direction.
While it doesn’t matter what they do for a career…their career choice predicates further signs of compatibility such as lifestyle design and what they value or consider to be important. So, somebody who doesn’t know what they want to do career-wise is likely somebody who doesn’t exactly know what they truly value or the type of life they wish to live in the future.
I remember one time, in particular, after a week-long travel trip by herself, she came back and told me she was taking off traveling all of a sudden.
As you might imagine, I didn’t react in the most redeeming way.
While she expected me to be excited for her growth and taste for travel, I couldn’t help but react with my own interests at heart, and was angry and confused that she would consider running off and leaving me without batting an eyelash.
She told me that I was being selfish and that I couldn’t handle her growth. It’s not that I couldn’t handle her growth, it’s just impossible to handle the growth of someone who is continuously growing in numerous unpredictable directions like a crack weed that can’t make up their mind.
Unsurprisingly, she changed her mind about the whole traveling thing and jumped on another idea.
It’s scary when you have huge emotional weight vested in a person like this because you’re almost preparing yourself to get your heart broken. Yet even knowing this, you love this person so your emotions overtake you so much so that you continue to stay in a precarious and unsafe situation for your heart.
It’s particularly difficult when this person’s pillars of values are not concrete. Meaning they have supposed values and priorities in their life that they’re stubborn about when it’s convenient for them. Yet their inability to actively enforce those values and priorities makes it hard for you to truly respect those values or take them seriously.
You also worry about fighting with this person because you worry that conflict will push them away, as people who are hurting on the inside, with unattended wounds, naturally flee from conflict.
They consider any kind of conflict or resistance in a relationship as a sign that it’s not right, for the reason that they have conflict inside of themselves that they’re also running from. So, if the relationship doesn’t always allow them to escape that internal conflict, but rather brings up more of the bad feelings they’re already feeling and trying to avoid, they panic.
This conflict-avoidant mentality in relationships is a big part of the kinds of people who fall in and out of love easily. AKA, ‘Flakey Love’.
Knowing this or feeling this from them, makes it hard for you to trust the stability of their love. For the fact that they’re dealing with so much stuff themselves, personally, you feel like their feelings and your relationship is like a Jenga tower, just waiting to topple over.
People who are not grounded and rooted in their life often use the love they receive from a romantic partner to selfishly mend or bandage wounds or holes in their life, without even realizing it. In other words, they will act selfishly without ever trying to be selfish or realize they’re being selfish in the first place.
This puts you in a perpetual state of fear and insecurity. You worry they will change their mind about you just like they’ve changed their mind about everything else in their life. You worry that their own personal instability means they’re more susceptible to be influenced by other people, other things so easily.
They’re a 24/7 flight risk to your heart because their lack of a fixed path and sense of self makes them more malleable to change and perhaps lead them to diverge down a different path, away from you. But worse of all, you fear that they’re not actually in love with you, but rather they’re in love with the feeling of love.
That, maybe, to them falling in love is a process that they have down to a science. Maybe you were just at the right place at the right time. The perfect escape. The perfect distraction. The perfect temporary bandage.
Sadly, some people who have not arrived in themselves, continue to hide from themselves in relationships. They use love and romance as make-up to cover up their wounds. But it’s unfair for you to have to deal with someone who feels like a chameleon when you’re strong-footed in who you are—your value system and what you want out of a relationship and your life.
Until this person finds consistency and sure footing in their life, they will continue to use relationships as safety blankets and life preservers to protect them from their wounds and prevent them from drowning, rather than to build roots.
Truth be told, sometimes people are only capable of flakey love because they still have work to do. They’re unborn. Caterpillars that haven’t turned into butterflies. Blossoms yet to bloom.
Relationships will cause us to grow. And we will grow within a relationship. But sometimes we still have so much growing and changing to do that our emotional landscape and life footing is far too chaotic and imbalanced to have the responsibility of someone else’s love on our shoulders.
Like in my case, I loved someone who I knew was going through a chaotic period of their life. Unfortunately, I allowed myself to hang around long enough to get sucked into the tornado.
Then there’s ‘Grounded Love’.
Love with roots. Like a tree with its rich roots deeply entrenched into the earth.
This type of love has depth to it. It’s stable. Healthy and full of life.
Grounded love is a product of two people who have strong footing and roots in who they are as people, and then they come together to build an even stronger force of nature.
It’s two people who have done their work, faced their shadows, overcome their demons, learned their lessons, come to terms with their losses and made peace with their past, and are marching forward on their most authentic life path possible.
Grounded love is when two people find alignment as a couple without forfeiting or sabotaging their own self-alignment. Think of self-alignment like lanes on a highway. When we veer out of our lane, accidents happen.
But grounded love is a result of two people who stayed in their own self-alignment lane, and then found alignment as a couple and helped elevate one another to the next level of their lives in the direction they were already headed before meeting each other.
In this relationship, both people have real purpose and direction in their lives. They know who they are, what they want out of life, and out of a relationship. This makes it easy to know where this person stands and who they are. No surprises. You know what this person is all about, which makes it much easier to access your compatibility.
These people are concrete in their value system and what they stand for. Not just that, but they actively enforce those values into their life and never abandon those values just to find love. These two people have learned that honouring themselves is more important than finding a relationship for the wrong reasons.
It’s easy to respect these people because of the example they set by showing you how much they respect themselves. This gives both people a high degree of self-worth. A high degree of self-worth and honesty with one’s self translates into relational integrity when it continues to be protected and enforced within relationships.
They don’t compromise values for relationships. So, when they do let you into their heart and life, it’s not a mistake, but rather because they see you as someone they can work alongside to build upon what they’ve already created.
Grounded love doesn’t flee from conflict, but rather embraces conflict as an opportunity to build new layers of intimacy and closeness. You feel comfortable speaking your truth in a grounded love relationship because you know that you can fight without having it put your overall relationship in jeopardy.
Additionally, you know both of you are in the ring, fully committed to the relationship and striving to improve it. This ability to embrace and move past conflict in relationships is a by-product of two people who first found resolution in themselves.
A grounded love relationship is when two people don’t need each other, but they want each other. Because being together, simply makes life better.
But most importantly, you never—not even for a second—doubt the person’s love for you. You know with unwavering certainty, you’re undeniable to them, and they know they’re undeniable to you. This creates trust. And that trust creates a frolicking freedom within the relationship to be you, and to continue to be you with your soul on fire.
That’s because you know in your heart of hearts, you don’t need to change who you are to be right for this person or make the relationship work.
In flakey love relationships, you feel like you’re in survival mode all the time. You hold on too tight. You grit your teeth. You fear the worst. Gripping. Clawing. And struggling to make it work.
But in grounded love relationships, you’re thriving both as individuals and as a couple. You’re both you to the 100th percent. Relaxed, and in love. At ease with allowing a river of space to exist between you.
It feels right. They feel right and you love who you are when you’re with them. You aren’t constantly looking over your shoulder like you were the last time you couldn’t trust someone’s love. You’re locked in, engaged with the present, trusting that whatever lies over your shoulder can’t break what you have.
In flakey love relationships, simmering below the surface, there is always doubt trying to crack through. You could never shake the fear that outside forces and storms could pass through and uproot your relationship in an instant.
But in a grounded love relationship, growing below the surface is rich soil and growing life. You don’t fear storms and outside forces, because you know you’re in this together, embraced in each other’s arms, with strong roots below to hold you in place while you watch the storms pass by overhead.
I’m telling you…it’s not unjust to want somebody who’s settled in who they are as a person and what they want in life. In fact, this is the only foundation upon which healthy, grounded love can be built.
Without it, your love would be like a leaf in the wind—unsettled, fragile, impossible to hold onto, dipping, diving and bellowing at the wind’s command, until it eventually crunches to the ground.
You can’t build roots with someone else until you’ve first built roots for yourself. And if you’re capable of loving someone else with roots attached, you deserve roots in return.
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