You will probably agree that what comes out of a person’s mouth was first formulated in their mind. The same is true when applied to a person’s habits and actions. Wouldn’t it just make sense that how that person loves is also first determined by the force actuating their mind?
Three thinking patterns that determine how we love
Take a moment and think, not about yourself, but about those who you know well in regard to how successful they’ve been in attracting and keeping a loving relationship. Now, answer this question. Does this person’s thinking primarily focus on themselves, on the other individual, or on themselves and the other individual as one unit? You might need some help to analyze this so let’s break it down.
Focused on self
This thinking pattern is always seeking ways to benefit itself. A person focused on self is capable of giving but the giving will never outweigh the expectation of getting. Because they are constantly thinking about themselves everything in their dealings with others is also about them. Manipulating others to receive what they think they deserve is a daily norm.
While this person may feel love, their ability to express that emotion in a healthy and reciprocal way is very limited. Focused on themselves, their individual goals and desires will always take first place in a relationship.
A thinking pattern focused on self will produce a form of ‘love’ that is self-centered, insecure, controlling, and self-serving.
Focused on the other individual
No, it’s not wrong to care deeply and unselfishly about another person. However, if that is taken to an excessive degree, it becomes a hindrance to establishing a mutually loving relationship. Let’s examine why.
Being solely focused on another individual will naturally exclude your deepest needs. Why? Because eventually you’ll lie about and ignore your basic needs in order to obtain approval from the other person. An insecure thinking pattern is in constant fear of rejection and will do whatever it takes to satisfy the other person at the expense of their own happiness.
A thinking pattern focused on another individual cannot find the balance necessary to maintain a healthy mental and emotional balance required in a loving relationship.
Focused on ‘Us’ — both parties as one unit
In a successful and loving relationship, the parties involved have a unique thinking pattern that can be observed. This pattern is unique because of its duality — thinking for two, not just one.
In a duality relationship, open communication flows easily and is mutually beneficial. A person focused on the ‘US’ in the relationship is honest and holds themselves accountable. They always strive for balance when it comes to the needs and desires of both themselves and the other party. They value trust, given and received, and are a supportive factor in the relationship.
A thinking pattern focused on the ‘US’ in a loving relationship is mindful and protective of the unified bond and happiness within the ‘US’ relationship. They see themselves as half of a whole and act accordingly. They think in terms of a connected unit that moves in unison. Problem-solving and decision making is done with a team mentality.
In simplest terms, to love well we need to first fashion our thinking patterns. The wrong thinking patterns, if not changed, will guarantee failure over and over again.
This post was previously published on Hello, Love.
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