Exclusive excerpt from the book Individual Power: Reclaiming Your Core, Your Truth, and Your Life By Barbara Rose, PhD
To be there, to love, what is the price? What will it cost you to receive all you are entitled to? To be in a relationship, there is a payment that must be made if you wish to receive all you desire from the other.
If your payment is fear, withholding your true feelings, holding back, allowing fear to block the flow of truth, then you receive loneliness and validate your own lack of self-worth. This validation only breeds further feelings of alienation;
you do not experience all the rich joy you can receive when your payment is genuine truth.
To share your truth is perhaps one of the scariest feelings that exists between lovers and romantic friends today.
When you take the risk to bear your soul, expose the real you, and reveal your genuine feelings, you become vulnerable; you may be afraid that your open heart will be pierced by another.
But there is another dynamic you may wish to consider and experiment with, a tiny bit at a time.
Risk exposing your feelings.
Take a tiny risk, just as a baby takes a tiny risk with his first steps. Yes, your fears may cause you to stumble, to close your heart again. But if you are with a person you truly love, and you take a baby step to expose your truth, then you can see the reaction. Then you can see how you will be treated as you risk sharing the genuine feelings you hold inside.
If you are with a person you truly love, and you do take tiny steps to share your genuine feelings, you will find that you are rewarded with love, acceptance, and appreciation in return. Then take another step, take an action, do something special together, and watch, feel, and be amazed at the new joy you will discover.
As you take tiny steps, first with vision and will, then with action, you will find the rewards are akin to those of a baby learning to walk: “Wow, I can do it!” The baby thinks, “I will do this again!”
After many attempts of risking to share genuine love and true feelings, you will find that you stumble back into old patterns far less than you did before.
And you walk beside the one you love more easily. And soon you may want to run together – to dare to go all the way, to run, and laugh, and experience the true freedom and joy of sharing your true self, your true and honest feelings with the one person who has truly been there for you through all your past stumblings.
When you find this with another, you have found real love. You have found one with whom you can share your deepest fears, your greatest insecurities, your biggest mistakes, and still be loved and appreciated for all of who you are.
When you find such a person in your life, you must know there is a reason for this to have happened to you. You may choose to take a deeper look beyond the simple romantic or friendly attraction and realize that perhaps there are greater reasons, higher reasons for your finding one another.
Perhaps you are to do something together. Perhaps you are to truly be there by each other’s side, a hand to hold, arms to hug, love to feel, fun to share, friendship to grow, trust to bloom, and memories to create that you can treasure together for your life.
There have been many people who have turned their backs to the love they have found, and in each case, those people have never forgotten, nor have they ever been able to replace their true match with another. They live with regret. They live with a heart longing for the joy and beauty they once had but were too afraid to embrace fully; they turned their backs on the one they truly loved, and never found such a true love again.
Love, pure love, honest and
genuine love, does not die.
You can travel to every corner of the globe. You can watch the seasons pass. But no matter how far you travel or how many years have gone by since you held the one you love in your arms, your heart, your soul will never forget this one person.
You may also find that the one who brings out your greatest growth, who makes you see all of the areas that need healing is precisely the person you may find yourself wanting to run away from. Who wants to face all of that hurt? If that happens, be wise enough to ask yourself, “Isn’t that why we have true relationships, to genuinely become the best we can be?” And how can we become our best when we ignore or run away from those areas we need to heal? We cannot.
So the one who causes you great frustration is also the one who ultimately brings you the greatest joy: the discovery of the genuine you.
Once you do grow through the challenges, the rewards of such a deep and genuine understanding between two people could never be replaced by a shallow, superficial relationship. Love is a gift, and appreciation for this gift must be shown.
There is the saying, “Hurt me once, shame on you; hurt me twice, shame on me.” This universe will send you a gift of love, a true match, once. If you choose to throw this gift away, if you do not show appreciation for it, you can be certain this universe will not be foolish enough to give you a gift so rare and so special again in this life.
You must know that when a person treasures you, when he or she sees through to the core of you and accepts you fully, with all of your faults, you have been blessed.
Now, if you love this person, if you truly do, deep inside, love this person, then give yourself this gift of love, cherish and treasure the gift you have received, for if you do not, you shall not ever know such a gift again in this life.
You will know deep down in your heart when all of the elements are there. You will feel so at peace and, at the same time, so challenged – challenged to grow, challenged to evolve and lift yourself above and beyond your fears of intimacy.
This work on self is required in order to continue experiencing the gift of this love in your life.
Debilitating fears of closeness or of opening one’s heart are also patterns that must be recognized and worked through. So ask yourself, “How can I notice when those old feelings come up?”
Become conscious of them. If you remain on automatic pilot, you will automatically sabotage the relationship.
Fear of being hurt or vulnerable is understandable and quite common. When left unnoticed, unchecked, and unattended to, however, it is also the source of pain. How do you attend to your fears? You simply acknowledge their existence.
You say, “Oh look, this is what I have been feeling, this is what happens to me. Do I want this feeling or pattern to take charge, or do I prefer something different?”
It comes down to a preference, an individual choice not to react but to consciously decide how you are going to respond when you notice your fears coming to the surface. Once you become fully conscious of them, their paralyzing effect dwindles;
instead of feeling smothered by an avalanche, you feel the slight sting of a pebble. Awareness of an old pattern greatly reduces its effects on you.
There is always a period of tremendous anxiety when old fears come to the surface. Realize, however, that this anxiety does, in fact, pass. It is a feeling. Feelings flow. One feeling, no matter how horrible or anxiety provoking, does not last forever.
So once you notice the anxiety coming to the surface, you become the one in charge. You are no longer run by old tapes that do not help you experience all you prefer to experience now.
Those old tapes may have served you in the past, protecting you from pain from a certain person. But now that you have found someone else, someone special, those old tapes can only be destructive.
If you become aware of your feelings and allow the anxiety to pass by sharing what you think and how you feel, then you no longer risk losing a person you may not ever be able to replace.
This is far better than allowing old, self-protective patterns that are in your comfort zone to destroy your opportunity for genuine love and genuine healing. Would you rather lose true love because it feels uncomfortable? Is that what you want?
Look around you. Think of all the people you have dated. Think of how many years you have gone without this one very special person. Do you want to lose this gift simply because it is scary for you to take personal responsibility and notice your feelings as they surface?
You do not have to be perfect. You cannot be perfect. But if you decide to take charge of an old pattern and act to heal your inner self, you will find that the one you love will not leave your side.
© Copyright 2001,2003,2014 by Barbara Rose, All Rights Reserved. Excerpt re-printed with permission from the book Individual Power: Reclaiming Your Core, Your Truth and Your Life Published by The Rose Group (2003) ISBN: 097414570X.