Let Love Lead February 11 2016, 0 Comments
As Valentine’s Day approaches, love has been heavy on my mind… particularly the role that love plays in our daily lives.
During my time in the Peace Corps my co-workers and I took a character strength assessment as part of a training we attended together. What are character strengths, you ask? According to the VIA Institute, they are the personality characteristics that make you authentic, unique and feel engaged. *
Character strengths are part of the exploding world of positive psychology. The basic premise is that we all have strengths and weaknesses, but rather than focusing on fixing our weaknesses (which so many of us do), what if we took that energy and focused on our strengths instead? The idea intrigued me, and the results of my assessment definitely took me by surprise.
Although I’m not a lovey-dovey person by nature, in fact I often see myself as more cerebral than emotional, yet one of my top character strengths was love.
The character strength of love is defined as: “You value close relations with others, in particular those in which sharing and caring are reciprocated. The people to whom you feel most close are the same people who feel most close to you.”
The more I thought about it, the more it made sense to me. I do value my relationships above other aspects of my life; while I am close to only a handful of people, they are precious to me; those relationships that I do hold dear are strongly reciprocal. But the more I thought about it, the more broadly I began to see this definition of love.
Wasn’t it love that led many of my creative endeavors? Wasn’t it love I felt whenever I penned a page? Hasn’t love been quietly guiding many of my life’s adventures? Truly, love is at the forefront of my life more than I ever imagined!
[Credits: Tangie Bundle No. 15]
With this knowledge in hand, I began to consciously shift my mindset. “Let love lead,” became a favorite mantra of mine. Whenever I’m faced with a difficult decision or I am at a crossroads, this saying inevitably helps me decide which path to take.
Now, I know I’m making this sound super easy, when in reality the transition from leading with your brain to leading with your heart can be a rocky road. But, giving in to the power of love is a decision you will not regret. It has filled my life with unmeasurable joy and peace and allowed my creativity to manifest in ways I never dreamed.
This Valentine’s Day I encourage you to take a deeper look at the role of love in your life. You might be pleasantly surprised at the hidden treasures you might find.
[posted by Karli-Marie]