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Daily Share – How Do I Love Unconditionally?

I am struggling right now with addiction. I have had issues with food and sex, TV and other diversions. Lots of different things to try to fill the void. I feel like I have made a lot of progress in the last several years. I have read most of the works of Wayne Dyer and I am so grateful for the great lessons he has taught me. Also for Oprah. I admire her for the change she is bringing to the world. I know I am very close to something big. I know what I should be doing to live my purpose. I am a chef and have developed a lot of great healthy recipes. I have been developing a holistic approach to losing weight that will help people heal their lives, and the weight loss will be a wonderful side effect.

I am frustrated that I still struggle to let go of my addictions. I know that I am a good person but most of the things I’m addicted to hold a lot of underlying selfishness. I am afraid to give freely and love freely without expecting or wanting something in return. My family is on the verge of collapse and by coming here I hope to gain the focus, the strength, and the courage to take the final leap of faith and truly surrender to this way of living that I know is the right way to live, and to be.

A TDL Reader

  • Sarales

    I feel EXACTLY the same way.Thanks for sharing.I don’t feel so alone today.Namaste.

    • Paulaquint

      Thanks everyone for the comments because it helps me to see that I am not alone.. I haven’t been reading TDl lately but today decided to read it and magic just happen giving me the opportunity to address this theme of addictions. and it’s just perfect when you open your hert you just get the message you were needing… it doesn’t matter if your addiction is drugs, food, sex, alcohol, drama, tv. They all come from an empty space that we are just trying to fill no matter how. For some reason it’s easier to give advice to other people. but it’s when we are alone that we go back to our habits, our addictions. that secure place that they provide us.

  • Ctladybug63

    This is a tough subject I too struggle with. I’m taking lessons from my dog, Jack. He loves me. He will go with me anywhere, fill my day with kisses, is always VERY happy to see me. Snuggled with me, stays with me when I’m sad, scared, lonely. I don’t believe he expects anything. Amazing. I’m sure he is a small piece of God showing me the way. Unconditional, wow, that’s a big one, so I’m sending you my love, wrapped in a warm smile and a big hug along with kisses from Jack. Unconditionaly.

    • Sussie

      that might be unconditional love to someone’s else eyes – but to me that just sounds like Co-dependency/ or just dependency.! 
      That is the very THINKING.. that makes MEN think WOMEN SHOULD  behave like; to show them how much their women love (and listen to) their husbands and to prove their love and devotion!…..I certainly am no animal or dog to be total by my husband’s side 24/7 and listen to his every command…Realise Dogs (or other animals) Need us humans to survive- we don’t NEED another human being to survive – we just WANT/CHOICE to be together….unconditional love for another huma- being IS just accepting them, warts and all, and (trying) to accept their downfalls along with their posititve attributes…its not just a ‘thinking thing’, its really doing it, and  not just saying it….its really accepting them and not trying to change them to fit into your ideal person…and i am not saying its easy…its not.!!!!!
      …loving a dog is easy, as they never argue back…you are always right and they are always Wrong in what they did…(but he only did what comes naturally to him)

  • Ajgirlpwr

    Since you seem to appreciate books, I’d like to recommend “How to be an Adult (in a relationship)”. It helped me to understand so many of my own issues surrounding love. You are on the right path, don’t give up.

  • Lori1273

    Admission was my first and hardest step.  I took the 12 step approach and learned more about myself than any therapist or book was ever able to teach me.  I realize it is not for everyone but it is one solution.  Thank you for your honesty

  • xomelodyxo

    Maybe you need to love yourself first before you are ready to love unconditionally. Loving yourself doesn’t mean that you are being selfish.

  • Sonna Marsland

    Wow, your words REALLY moved me. I am in the same exact spot as you…trying to let go of addictions, because they are all I know, it’s familiar, and I feel of I totally let go, who am I then? It’s scary. But I admire that you have found a purpose in your life, and being a chef is fantastic! I’m trying to lose weight, so any tips??
    Keep going. You are on the right path. It’s hard to let go. Plus, in my case, I’m scared of love. I don’t trust it. I believe it’s “out there” but it’s very very rare. I find I ALWAYS have my guard up. I’m really trying to trust, to believe, to let go.
    Email me at [email protected] if you want. We will do it! Take care

  • Kaseystaplesnyc

    I had an aha moment reading your words–they could be my words. It’s titled, how to love unconditionally–but we cant love other’s unconditionally if we are not loving ourselves in the same way. You and I are putting conditions on loving ourselves. The conditions we have been conditioned to believe gives us worth. Who says we need to be healthy or fit or selfless or sexless or non-TV addicted to deserve love? God certainly does not say as much. Our society may condition us to believe this to be true, but look at the sorry state our society is in–we don’t need to be taking its advice. So let’s claim our God-given right to love! To love ourselves, to love each other, to love all God’s marvelous creations. Whenever you or I have the desire to put conditions on our love, to judge or condemn ourselves for our behavior let’s think with God’s wisdom vs. our own insanity and say to ourselves, ‘STOP, this is a beautiful child of God who I love so well.’ There is no way a creation could be unlike it’s creator. To question our perfection is to question God’s.

  • djz

    You are on the right track!  Recognizing and admitting is half the battle!  Good on you!  What has worked for me is– starting my day with my gratitude list.  Starting each day with a grateful centered heart.   I repeat in my head thank you thank you– when the thoughts start to come that may get me off track during my day.  Or I just repeat love, love, love — a montra.  I focus on my breath.  Know that an anger flare up lasts only 90 seconds in our body before it subsides.  Next time you feel it– count 90 seconds.  Then respond from a calm place rather than reacting from a place of anger.  I hope this helps.  Know that you are not alone.  You are not your addictions or frustrations.  You are focused , strong and brave.  

  • Suzyqus62

    Just remember that you are special! You were created by GOD to be exactly WHO you are and that you are LOVED no matter what! We are all human and do make mistakes…yet we can LEARN by those mistakes to not make them again.Our life is our journey/our adventure…take each new day and live it to the most because you CAN!!!

  • Caron Matthew

    The one
    thing I would like to offer to you is to give yourself permission to struggle.
    Give yourself permission to be frustrated. I say this only because the ‘fight’
    we engage in with ourselves only perpetuates those feelings of inadequacy and
    insufficiency. By giving yourself permission to not be ok in those  moments, you
    will eventually surrender. When you surrender, that’s when things will start to shift. The
    shifts will occur seemingly without any effort on your part. The surrender, my
    friend, is what will allow God and the universe to do their work, which is to
    align all things in your favour. To get to this place, I encourage you to continue
    to feed your ears, your eyes, and your heart foods full of nutrients that will
    encourage and uplift you. Continue to read blogs like TDL, that align with your intention to heal. There are two quotes that always brings me great
    comfort in times of confusion and turmoil and I hope they will do the same for
    you, “When you are at your wit’s end, you will find that God lives
    there” and ” It is already done”. You are covered in grace and
    love and no addiction can rob you of that. I wish you all the love and goodness
    that has been predestined to be yours. 

  • Lgreenwell

    Thanks for the honesty. I get such strength and balance from hearing that my own struggles are not so different from yours…and others. I love to start my day with gratitude.and focus. I also try to live each day with intention, specifically to live in the moment, as it may actually be my last.

  • http://morningstarcounselinggroup.com/ Hollie

     I have juggled various addictions my whole life! I developed these
    awesome(sarcastic :/) addictions as coping mechanisms to get me through
    what were often hellish times. I did not have much of my own “power”
    when I came up with these varied survival techniques. Most of my
    addictive behaviors were born early in my childhood. I am thankful I had them at the time. After all, I did survive!

     I am finding as I deal with my emotional/spiritual self my “need” for these various addictions is lessening. As I validate my own pain and life experiences the “pull” grows weaker. As I get to know more of my true self the less sense it makes for me  to do things I  can now see really do harm me. I’ve experienced so much harm in my life. I can’t bare when I’m confronted with the reality that I AM HARMING MYSELF:( If I want others to love and respect me, first I have to learn how to.

    It is very hard work. But I think I am worth it. I think you are worth it. I am currently being called to release my long time love affair with cigarettes. They say “What does not kill you makes you stronger”, I hope so. In the past 2 months I feel emotionally and physically ripped to shreds. Upon release of this particular addiction years of buried pain has surfaced. I am in the throws of grief like never before. I WANT to do what I have known. I WANT to mask and stop this pain. But I think I WANT real freedom more, and no matter how hard it is, I think I am gonna choose me this time. You will choose you when it is your time. Bless you, your heart, your life experiences both past and present.

  • http://twitter.com/ExtremeSupaMoon Thom Moon

    You are definitely on the right track, but be careful of denial.  I am in a similar position to you with alcohol  and I have lost my family because of it.  Self-love is something you have to do for your self, but having your family around while trying to build self-love, is a lot easier.  

    Abraham J Twerski wrote…
    “Early in recovery, some addicts claim to have a flash of in-sight.  It suddenly strikes them how blind they have been to their addiction, and how selfish and inconsiderate they have been.They may think, I am certainly not stupid enough to revert back to my destructive behaviour now that I have become aware of it.Having had this vision of truth, they may elect to leave treatment because they “no longer need it.””

    You have all my support, and you are not far from you goal. Be honest and be open with your family. I wasn’t and they are gone.

  • wholeplantfoodsheal

    Mastin, I would love the name of your Chinese doctor to find out about homeopathic medicine.  Please share with us :)

  • Loretta Shaw

    EVERYTHING depends on LOVE. And when you simply start loving yourself, you have nothing but love to give.

  • Sobriety4

    I have never loved myself I have depended on others..Where do I begin