Please enjoy this excerpt from Braving It, one of my absolute favorite books. You gotta read the whole thing…there’s so much in here about living boldly and freely! This post is from the chapter: “Let only love in”
So what should make it through our souls’ screening process if our invisible fence is only supposed to let love in? I think that’s simple but not always easy.
Here’s how we recognize love, beautiful someone:
Love grows (increases, expands, adds, challenges)
while fear contracts (decreases, contracts, diminishes) us.
That means love builds up
It closes wounds. It radiates. It empowers. It inspires. It is constructive. It builds.
- It’s goodness that expands.
- It’s kindness that heals.
- It’s warmth that radiates.
- It’s trust that empowers.
- It’s fresh ideas that inspire.
- It’s respect for differences that stimulate and educate.
- It’s feedback that’s truly constructive and helps us build a better next time.
- It’s hard work that creates something good and positive and helpful.
- It’s devotion that supports and makes others feel safe.
Love makes things better
It makes us better. It includes tough love sometimes but tough love that aims to make a person or situation ultimately better. Love expands — it is full of ideas and helpful advice. It’s generous and expects nothing in return. It starts a chain reaction in us that makes us want to be generous with other people, rather than sucking all the energy and the life out of us so that we have nothing left for anyone else.
Love changes us for the better, and then we change things for the better.
- Love of our work expands our horizons, sharpens our thinking, makes us believe in what’s possible, what we can create.
- Love of other people respects their differences, gives them the benefit of the doubt, and connects us to them in an ever-expanding circle of positive relationships.
- Love of our communities deepens our sense of responsibility and expands our involvement in making our neighborhoods better places to live.
Let only love in
Starting right here and now: we will live boldly and bravely by putting up a sign over the door to our souls that says, “Only love may enter here.”
And so, we will not let people or experiences into our lives that are not uplifting. Nothing will enter that’s cruel or makes us doubt ourselves and our strengths. If people or experiences aren’t healthy and loving, they pass through our lives — we will handle them as we must — but then they’ll leave. They won’t live in our souls and waste our precious energy.