Today I share something of a “mini-manifesto” of mine that explains how your search for love can actually heal your life. Diminishing yourself leads you away from true intimate connection and this episode offers advice for those struggling to accept themselves.
When we try to bury the parts of ourselves that make us unique, we very often become defensive when dating. The truth is that the very thing that leads you to self-love also leads you to healthy love. How beautiful it is to have a tool that does both.
Listen in to learn the true meaning of self-love and how the way you search for love can heal your heart.
If you love the Show, please Subscribe, Rate, Review and Share on Apple Podcasts, or your favorite Podcast Platform!
- What is the meaning of self-love
- How to name your Core Gifts
- What happens when we are defensive about dating
- How can the way you search for love can heal your heart
- What is Ken’s mini manifesto
- Why does a healthy search for external love also encourage self-love
- Listen to The Deeper Dating® Podcast Episode 163: How to Navigate the Pitfalls (and Enjoy the Delights) of New Love
- Get a copy of Deeper Dating by Ken Page
- Join the Coaching and Mentorship Intensive with Ken Page
- Connect with us on Instagram
There is a way to heal your dating life and your search for love, so it not only leads you more directly to the healthy, beautiful love you’re seeking, but it heals your heart and your life at the very same time using the very same tools. Stay tuned to this episode of the Deeper Dating® Podcast to learn what those tools are and to make them yours.
Hello everybody. I’m Ken Page and I am your host of The Deeper Dating® Podcast. I’m a psychotherapist and I’m the author of the bestselling book, Deeper Dating: How to Drop the Games of Seduction and Discover the Power of Intimacy, and I’m the creator of the Deeper Dating® Intensive.
Today we’re going to be talking about something very, very close to my heart, and that is how your search for love can actually heal your life, even before finding your partner, on the way to finding your partner.
And in this episode and every episode, I’m going to share with you the greatest tools and insights that I know to help you find beautiful love and keep it flourishing in your life and heal your life in the process, because the skills of dating are the skills of love and the skills of love are the most important skills of all for a happy and meaningful life.
And if you want to know more about this work and this path, just go to deeperdatingpodcast.com. You’ll find transcripts of every episode. You’ll be able to join my mailing list, get some really wonderful free gifts and free resources, and learn a lot more about my work and the work of people I respect.
The more you treat yourself with great care in your search for love as opposed to treating yourself as currency to buy what you want to buy...the more likely you are to find the kind of love that you're dreaming of. Click To Tweet
So, okay, let’s jump in. I think that so many of us think that finding really wonderful love is what’s going to heal our life. And yeah, that’s true in so many ways. That enriches our life profoundly. It means so, so, so much.
But it’s also true that the way we learn to love heals our life, up levels the quality of people that we meet, and this isn’t the way we learn to love, but also the way we learn to date, up levels the quality of people that we meet, up levels our capacity to sustain and nourish and grow love, and also teaches us how to love ourselves and heals our attachment wounds and improves our attachment style.
All of those things happen by the conscious approach to dating that I teach in this work and that many other wonderful teachers teach in their work as well.
So let’s jump in and talk about these three particular ways that the way you search for love is going to heal your life, which kind of includes but doesn’t include that the way that we search for love determines the quality of the love we find, but that’s a side benefit. We’re going to have a huge side benefit, but I want to talk specifically about this one piece about how the way you search for love can heal your heart, your life, and your self-love.
Okay, so first, the first piece of this is, that the way we’re taught the search for love works is that it’s a numbers game, it’s a marketplace, it’s a game of odds, it’s a contest. We learn all of these things that are kind of soul-killing and thank God not the deepest truth, but what’s bad is that that’s what we learn.
Heal your heart to find lasting love:
And in fact, the deeper truth is, and this is what I teach in all of my work, that the more you learn to honor and treasure and dignify your most essential self, the more you treat that self with great care in your search for love as opposed to treating yourself as currency to buy what you want to buy. The more you treat these treasured parts of yourself with honor and dignity, the more likely you are to find the kind of love that you’re dreaming of and heal your heart at the same time.
In a way, what we need to be able to do is to move from armoring to honoring. When we see ourself as kind of the product, the merchandise, that its value will be determined in the marketplace of dating, we have to armor ourselves. We have to armor our hearts because of the unkindness of that approach.
And when we armor ourselves, we become more brittle, we become more defensive, we become less likely to show the beauty of our vulnerability, and instead we kind of show a false self or an airbrushed self. And what that does is profoundly diminish our chances of finding someone who’s going to treasure us for who we are. And that is exactly what we want.
So we need to move from that honor armoring to a space of honoring. And in my intensives, which are six months long, we spend three months on learning to name and identify our Core Gifts.
The way we learn to love heals our life, up levels the quality of people that we meet...and also teaches us how to love ourselves and heals our attachment wounds and improves our attachment style. Click To Tweet
Now, what are your Core Gifts? They are the places of your greatest sensitivity. They’re the places of your greatest sensuality, the places of your greatest aliveness, they’re the places where you are the most you. But that stuff is highly charged and it’s highly vulnerable. So what we do is we armor those parts of ourselves, go out into the dating world and hope to get what we want, which would be somebody with whom we can then disarmor ourselves because they honor us.
But that is a kind of backwards approach. What we need to do first is to learn what these parts of ourselves are, the very parts that we have been shy about showing, the parts that are our deepest creativity, our deepest passion, our places of deep sensuality, our places of personal power, our places of incredible tenderness, our places where we’re so expansive in some ways or so real that it scares us and kind of that’s what it means to be human.
And that is why the true journey is a journey that heals our hearts, because as you learn to name and dignify the very parts of yourself that you thought you had to turn the volume down on, so you learn to honor those parts and lead with them. It’s an experience of self-love. It becomes a portal to the deepest love languages that you have inside yourself.
So this is kind of the first stage and the way that this wiser approach heals us is we think about what are the places where we’re so tender that we’re afraid to show it? What if we only, only were looking for a partner who was going to treasure those parts of ourselves? And that is only, only what we’re looking for. What if the parts of us that feel really unique and different and kind of odd, are the very parts of ourselves that our partner celebrates? That’s the partner we’re looking for?
Developing a true secure attachment style:
What are the places where we feel insecure and vulnerable and we can share those parts and trust that the person that we are going to be with is going to hold them with care. That’s the kind of partner we want. And there is a dual, this is like an ax with two sharp sides to it that will get you what you want.
One side is that when you live that way, you will speed your path to finding a partner like that because that’s all you’re going to be looking for. The power of your focus is going to go toward finding that person. And there’s really fascinating research that backs that up, that when you make that your goal, you’re more likely to find it, notice it, and be attracted to it.
But there’s another side to this beautiful ax, and I think of that quote, “That books are the ax that breaks the frozen sea within us.” This approach to finding love is the ax that breaks the frozen sea within us, that coldness, that hardness, that flintiness.
Healing can go inner and it can go outer and one feeds the other and this is the wisdom path to love that is to be celebrated. Click To Tweet
So the other side of this ax is that when you live this way, when you choose to date this way, this kind of heroic way, when you choose to do that, the other thing that happens, the other side, in addition to being so much more likely to find the love you’re seeking, is that you learn profound self-love and you learn to follow the threads of your deepest self into your deepest self.
It’s a journey of self-discovery, because not only are you revealing it, you’re revealing it to yourself, you’re learning about it. You are learning to honor the uniqueness of who you are. You are a Core Gift, and that is the heart of deep self-love.
And it’s also the heart of developing a true secure attachment style because when your deep down self knows that it is being dignified and honored and championed by you, it finally relaxes. There’s a sense, it’s like you get off of a really wobbly ladder and you start standing more and more on solid ground. This is the meaning of self-love. And that’s why this is such an adventure of healing.
But how fabulous is it that the very thing that leads you to self-love also leads you to healthy love? How beautiful it is to have a tool that does both. So the second one comes out of the first one, and that is discrimination. In the work that I do in these intensives, when people have spent that period of three months immersing themselves in the beauty and the uniqueness and the mystery of their Core Gifts, something else happens in that process.
They become more and more allergic to people who step on those parts of themselves. They become less and less tolerant. They become more and more skilled at saying, “Something doesn’t feel right in my deep inner self. Something doesn’t feel safe. My nervous system is not feeling good about this.” They learn to honor that and trust that and then think, well, what am I going to do about that?
Maybe the person deserves that you speak to them to find out what was going on for them or to share what your experience is or to make an ask to make things different. Maybe they don’t deserve it because they’ve been consistently unkind or diminishing of your Core Gifts. You get to make that decision, but you do it from this wonderful place of discrimination.
And when you become discriminating like this, this is a very, very precious thing here. It’s that the most tender parts of your being, the parts that you’ve wondered, are these acceptable? Are these worthy? Are these lovable?
The kind of places where you wait to find a wonderful partner to see if that person will accept them and love them, and that makes them acceptable and lovable. When you instead practice this discrimination that comes out of this deep rich self dignifying. When you do that, you kind of really find your own inner strength and that discrimination will save you oodles and oodles of time.
This is something I talk about in other episodes – that we have two circuitries, being attracted to what I call Attractions of Deprivation or Attractions of Inspiration. And this is the piece that Oprah shared widely from my book, that very concept.
So as you learn to make this decision, which is like a momentous decision, no more Attractions of Deprivation, period, the end, done. Attractions of Inspiration, that’s where I want to build my home in the world. So that kind of discrimination is a deep self-love and self-protection and self-honoring.
Again, it’s this two beautiful sides of this amazing tool because that’s the self-love piece. But, oh my God, does that save you time in your search for love! Because that is what you’re looking for is an Attraction of Inspiration. That’s where you want to build your home in the world. So again, this is both.
How fabulous that this can be both, that the healing can go inner and it can go outer and one feeds the other. And this is the wisdom path to finding love that is to be celebrated. Now, is it hard? Yes. Is there difficulty and heartbreak and complications? God knows it’s not easy. This is not easy, but it doesn’t mean that the simplicity of these concepts is not profoundly true.
Building the muscle of brave expression in the world:
Okay, now I’m going to talk about the third one, too. It is building the muscle of brave expression in the world, which means that you become willing. This is what happens when people fall in love. They get to show their silliness.
And I think one of the greatest gifts of being a dad is that I have gotten to show my ridiculous over the top silliness freely and wildly. Less so now, but as a teenager, that kind of has to stop, but I got a lot of years in being really stupidly ridiculously joyful. And that was really a gift.
And when you’re in love, you kind of feel that way too. Greg gets such a kick out of my dancing wildly and crazily, and that makes me so happy that he gets a kick out of that because that’s something I could be kind of embarrassed or shy about.
So this piece of showing who you are, showing your exuberance, showing your creativity, showing your uniqueness, this is love. This is love, this is living love in the world. And it does a few different things. Once again, it builds love with your partner because it is so effusive and exuberant, if it’s the right partner. It also discriminates. It helps you with discrimination because the kind of partner that doesn’t want to see you be that alive is not the partner you want.
Laurie Colwin is an author I really love, and one of her books she described these two people that met at a faculty lunch. And so they met at this faculty lunch and one said to the other, the guy said to the woman, she had loaded her plate with this fabulous luscious food and he had a kind of spare Spartan plate full of food.
And he said, “You’re going to eat all that?” And she looked at him and she said, “Yes, I am.” And then Laurie Colwin pulled back as the narrator and she said that one interchange could have defined their entire relationship and the end of their relationship years later.
Because of her effusiveness or exuberance or appetite for life, that for him was just like a little difficult to tolerate. And that ended up being a really true thing. So you getting to show your beautiful exuberance, your sexuality, your sense of humor, your silliness, your child likeness, your deep affection, your effusive love, your generosity of spirit. All of those things, A, it’s self-love to allow that. B, you want a partner who’s going to celebrate that. C, when you have a partner who’s going to celebrate that, it’s going to reinforce your joy, your sense of mission and your sense of self.
So everything I’m saying here again, is like when you look at a map and an inch equals a hundred miles, it looks really easy to get to New York from Philly, but when you’re down in the trenches and an inch is an inch and a mile is a mile, there can be detours and blocks and weather.
And so it doesn’t mean the map isn’t true, it just means that the road is more complicated. But I deeply believe this road is true. And research backs up significant chunks of this road that I have described to you.
And I celebrate for you this making of a choice, that you’re going to take a path to find love that not only heals your heart and heals your life, but leads you so much more quickly to the beautiful love that you’re looking for and the rich and wonderful life that you’re going to get to have with someone who can love you the way you are meant to be loved.
Thank you so much for listening, and I look forward to seeing you on the next episode of The Deeper Dating® Podcast.
Watch the episode here:
Love the show?
Subscribe, rate, review, and share the show on Apple Podcasts, or your favorite podcast platform!