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The art of loving someone

This is a long blog post about how to keep love in a relationship alive and long. As usual, I want to write that I do not proofread my blog posts. My books, on the other hand, are proofread by outside professionals.

To love someone. To be able to love someone. To have the opportunity to show someone that you love them every day. That, dear readers, is a gift to me. Maybe I have that view because of my upbringing. It definitely means a lot to me based on the target image I set as a teenager of the man I wanted to be one day. That man would know the art of loving someone. However, it took me a long time to understand that I also needed to learn to love myself.

So how do you make someone else happy? How do you make someone feel comfortable in your company? How do you make someone feel like it's your beautiful home? And can you even do that? Should one even try (if it is not about, for example, one's children)? This is a subject that includes so many different parts. Two thousand characters on, for example, Instagram would never be enough. So that's why I'm writing this long post.

“My dear, are you sleeping? The trains are cancelled. Would you…” I heard my wife whisper something providential to me one early morning last week. Definitely afraid to wake me, based on how little I sleep, and at the same time in great need to do just that.

"Yes, I'd love to!" I interrupted her with a smile and flew out of bed without hardly opening my tired eyelids. About half an hour later we were in the car on the way from Västerås to Stockholm. "Do you know, my dear, that I get to do this means that however late the day may be, it has not been in vain. I see the fact that I get to give you a ride as a gift," I told her during the journey. "And it also means I get to hang out with you a little more. I like that.”

Dear reader, if you live with someone, wouldn't you love to hear this from that person: “My dear, it's not our home, it's not the things we own, it's you. Every time I think 'home', it's always you I see in front of me. Which makes my soul smile.” If you love someone, would you want that person to feel that way about you? I think most people would like that. So how do you get there?

Recently a woman asked me: "How does a man make me happy?" The most obvious and honest answer, if it were someone I don't know, would have been: "I have no idea!" (It is also possible, as I wrote in a previous post, to answer: "It is not his mission, it is yours.") Which is a truth with a modification. Why I think so is connected with the fact that all of us, regardless of preferences, experiences, age and sex, have certain basic needs. Beyond those for our survival. I think for example tenderness and closeness are such needs. So also to feel safe, respected and appreciated.

I'm now playing with the idea that I'm sitting with you and that we're talking about love, souls and relationships. You say to me: “Daniel, without any right or wrong, what do you think a man should do and what he should be like for a woman to feel good in his company? Chip freely.”

Because they play love, they are not love.

Right now I'm thinking that my spontaneous and probably long answer would start with: "It's complex. Because there are so many parts that influence. First, of course, it's about how you treat yourself. How to take care of both body and soul. How to come to terms with one's past, one's legacy. Then it's about what you want. One's goal image, one's dreams and how one views love. Then it's about how good you are at explaining it to the person you meet... And last, but no less important, it's about what she wants and what she appreciates."

Who is she? What has she been through? How are/were her parents? How does she remember her upbringing? What does she say she loves to do? What seems to make her happy? How are her morals? What are her values? How does she laugh when she is spontaneous? How has she been today? What haunts her these days? What does she seem to dislike? What questions does she often ask? How is her body affected by a hug, by a caress, by a whisper? Is she easy to get close to? What is stressing her? What topic does she seem to have difficulty talking about? What superlatives does she often use? Does she have memories of someone treating her badly? What is she dreaming about? How does she behave when she eats a magical meal? What does alcohol do to her mood? Does she speak softly or loudly? Where do the scars on her body come from? What is her target image of her personality and her life? If she could choose freely, where would she live? If she had to redo her upbringing, what would she have wanted less and more of? Why does she have a hard time being honest? Why is it easy for her to be honest, where does it come from? What is she passionate about? What is her passion? What makes her sad? What makes her angry? What about me does she seem to like extra? What in my personality does she struggle to accept? How does she react when I sneak up on her and kiss her neck? How does she move her hands when she wants to talk about something sensitive? How does her skin change when she gets excited? How does she sleep at night? What is security for her? What has changed in her recently? What is she like and how does she seem to feel when she has her period? What is a good man to her? What is a good man for her? What would she prefer, spiritual presence or financial security? Which aspects of herself does she particularly like or dislike? Is she happy with her body, if not, how would she like it to be? How was she a year ago? If she could be an animal, which one would she want to be and why? If she could choose three wishes to be granted, what would they be? How did she feel five years ago? What does she seem to enjoy most, me massaging her scalp or her feet? What gives her goosebumps? What books does she love to read? What food does she prefer? What does she say she wants to do but never takes the time to do? And lots and lots more.

In the above questions you have my answer. With them I would say to a man who asked that question: Get to know the woman you want to live with. And then not by asking you once, but by asking you and her such questions throughout your relationship. By always being curious about her. Don't take it for granted that she will be the same person in a year as she is today. Even less in five years. Get to know her development, the physical and the spiritual. Learn to appreciate the change that time and life are subjecting her to. Because whether you like it or not, you will be a part of it. Learn to see every day the woman you live with. Learn to see yourself in relation to her. How are you? What rights and wrongs do you do? What do you do that makes her happy and sad? Does she need to ask you for tenderness and closeness or are you generous and generous? How often, without words and without buying things, do you show her that you appreciate and love her? How do you listen to her? Are you interrupting her? Does your manner stress her out? Are you diminishing her without realizing that's exactly what you're doing? Do you interpret her silence as nothing you do is wrong? Does she dare ask you for advice? Is she safe in your company? Does she feel you are loyal to her? Are you judgmental when you talk to her? Learn to see every day as an opportunity to do something beautiful for her. And not for her to say: "Oh, thank you, how wonderful you are!" But because it is who you are, because you love her and because you see it as a gift to be able to give to her. Because you often think: Tomorrow I might lose you. I will therefore take the chance today to show you that I love you.

Not for who someone else is or how they are, but for who I am and want to be.

I'm sure someone will want to write to me: "Yes, but if the person doesn't appreciate it?!?" Or "But if you try it and it doesn't work, should I, like an idiot, keep trying?!?" Yes, also: "But who can bear to be like that?!" I know that such thoughts pop up quickly in some individuals. There is so much I could write in response, but in most cases, for the people who feel this way and whom I have had the opportunity to meet, I have noticed this: They have never tried. Not for real, not with all his heart and definitely not without expecting something in return. They often have one thing in common: They give to get. They give with one hand and ask to be given the other hand. They will never succeed in having a relationship that is filled with love. Why not? Because they play love, they are not love.

Such people want. They are impatient. And above all, their focus is more about how the other person is and behaves than how they themselves are. Such people often have a bad relationship with themselves. Such people can never be satisfied. Because the broken thing in their relationship is not the other person, the broken thing is themselves. They just lack the ability to see it. They are children who were never loved unconditionally, children who had to fight for just a small compliment, for a subtle hug. Too little appreciation, dear reader. They are adults who continue to be children who learned to give in order to get. They do to get. They love to get. They give compliments to get. They paint others with beautiful words to get some for themselves. It's not their fault, it really isn't their fault, but they are blind to how their childhood negatively affects them and how it affects the person they live with.

Only lazy fools who blame their failures on others think like that.

Personally, I expect nothing in return. Am I hoping for something? Yes of course. If I plant a flower, I hope it grows and blooms. I hope my wife appreciates what I give. I hope that what I give her reaches the depths of her soul. I hope it touches her. I hope it enriches her. When she has a hard day, I hope my love can warm her, lift her up. I give to her because I love her. If the day comes when I stop loving her or she me, the day when every morning another woman wakes up next to me, I will give everything to that woman. Not for who she is, not for how she appreciates it or not, but for who I am. Can you understand that approach? Not for who someone else is or how they are, but for who I am and want to be.

Based on the last line of the paragraph above, ask yourself the following: Do you think that the person who lives with such a person finds it easy to get away? Do you think that the attraction to someone else is just as great if you live with someone who makes you feel seen every day?

Do you work with customers/clients? If you do, then answer the following: Is your customer more likely to stay with you if they feel seen and appreciated by you? Even though you may have a more expensive price than the competition or slightly inferior products, would you still believe that the probability is greater that the customer who feels your care, appreciation and commitment will stay with you? I would say yes, of course! So if you know the art of showing the person you live with that you love them, that in turn increases the likelihood that the person will stick around and maybe even show you that they love you? Absolutely! That is my complete conviction.

Now don't come and say: "But you shouldn't have to be like that!!" Only lazy fools who blame their failures on others think like that. Yes, you need! End of discussion. A relationship is a commitment. One should even be like that. Why? Because love is a plant, dear rara. Stop watering your plants and you'll see what happens after just a few days. Stop taking care of your body and you will see what happens. Love is a plant. A relationship is a plant. Stop feeding it and it will die. And not maybe, but definitely. It dies.

Can the relationship, despite everything you give, still end? Absolutely! There are no guarantees whatsoever. I myself do not live with the fear that the relationship between me and my wife will one day end. If anything, I'm afraid to wake up one day and realize I'm the reason it ended. That I was the one who pushed her away, for example by not showing her my love and appreciation.

You see, we can't choose which person to love. We can only choose how to love that person. I myself don't need to receive to give to the one I love. But the man I am also does not stay with the woman who does not want nor appreciate what I have to give. That would be beneath my dignity. But yeah, I don't give a relationship a few days or a few months, to know if it's meant to be us or not. Because sometimes it takes years for someone's shell to crack, for someone to dare to be themselves fully. Shells that may have arisen because of how the person was treated as a child. Shouldn't anyone have taken the time to look through. It can take years, no matter how wonderful you are, for someone else to open up completely. Really years. In a world where everything has to happen now, imagine how difficult it must be not to have time to blossom. But also imagine how enriching and soul-touching it must be to meet someone with that patience and that strength. Someone who sees beyond one's layers and protective walls. And because of that, therefore, stays and through his love contributes to the fact that one dares to blossom, dares to tear down one's mental protective barriers.

If you love someone, you are prepared to give the person time. Yes, as long as it doesn't harm you. Only you can decide where that line is. I, personally, may be able to tolerate far more than you do. You may already leave when the person you are in love with shows interest in someone else. I might think that it is something natural and that it is more about the person seeking confirmation and therefore showing interest in someone else. You do what is right for you, based on how you interpret things, I based on what is right for me and how I interpret things. Your way may not work for me and mine may not work for you. But at the same time, reflect on this: If after twenty years you live in a happy relationship and I, during the same time, have only broken relationships behind me, isn't it more likely that your way works better than mine? (Or I just happen to have a lot of bad luck... 😉)

It takes time to get to know each other. And in that journey also to get to know yourself. I believe that in order to experience true love, the heart must be open to all the challenges it presents. Which then means being strong enough to be able to turn off the instinct of wanting to escape (or judge) at the slightest mistake. This in turn means an enormous trust in intuition and one's ability to read between the lines, to dare to trust more than what the eyes see and the ears hear. Few dare, largely because few have come so far with themselves that they are strong enough to stand in the storm without getting hurt.

A spiritual home, what for me is true love for someone else, comes from two separate trees tearing up their roots to be able to get closer to each other and then take root together. This is how I described my and Marielle's relationship recently: "Like two unique trees that lived apart, without really taking root, and then slowly but surely began to grow together to today live in total symbiosis with each other. Which gave us a freedom and security we could only dream of.

Most people, I believe, want to find the beautiful and true love. Most people will die looking for one or dreaming of it. Those who do not are those who have understood that such love is the result of two souls' efforts, wills and their ability to keep their human egos in check, and that over a very long period of time. That love is shaped and grows by their shared will to get there. But don't get there in a day, a week or a month. But for years. Years of daily nutrition. Sometimes where one struggles more than the other, sometimes the other way around. But always forward, always with the goal of building a beautiful home. Which then is not a place, but the relationship between two people.

However, few can manage. Which is very sad. Therefore, the experience that awaits those who can endure is something beyond anything they could dream of.

Thank you for your time! Daniel Mendoza

Photo: Shutterstock

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