37 Responses to “How Unconditional Is Your Love?”

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  1. It’s a really good post, Tess. Very clear. There’s something here that I can clearly relate to – even though it’s a little hard for me to admit it. xoxo

  2. Great piece! It definitely helps one to relate to others by remembering the reverse: that their anger is about their unhealed issues, not about you. It helps in forgiveness and being able to see others in a positive light.

    The phrase that I use when I’m frustrated with someone is “that’s their best.” Everyone is doing his/her best all the time, no exceptions. They may have a limited view of the world or a perspective that is unhelpful or even harms others, but with their psychological or emotional limitations, they are doing their absolute best.

    • Paul,

      Yes that is so true. I don’t have to take anything personally. I have enough of my own ’stuff.’ I don’t like taking on the issues of others. However I do often find myself wanting to play in my adult children’s backyard;)

      “That’s their best.” That’s a huge gift you’ve given me. I never heard it put like that before. Yes…no exceptions. I appreciate you sharing your wisdom here.

  3. Wow, this post feels like it was sent from God, through you & directly to my soul. Thank you for this post <3

    Denise

  4. Tess, lovely to ’see’ you here! I appreciate your vulnerability & honesty; thank you for sharing your experiences in order to empower others in their relationships. It’s easy to think that we’re the only ones who struggle to act with love in our closest relationships, until someone comes along with the courage to admit how tough it can be.
    Thank you! :)

  5. Caroline,

    Your welcome! I think I get extra practice because I came from a big family and decided to have a big family. Courage? Yes, you wouldn’t expect anything different for The Bold One, right:)

  6. Hi Katie & Tess,
    I would venture to say that the only people who don’t struggle with being more compassionate and unconditionally loving toward those closest to them are saints!
    I am no saint – and I can relate to this article very well.
    We don’t have attachments and baggage to deal with when we are dealing with strangers but we do when it comes to our loved ones.
    I think your tips were spot on Tess.
    Love is always the answer.

  7. Hi Angela,

    Isn’t that the truth! I don’t know anyone who can walk on water. Do you? Thanks for all the support you give me. I’m grateful. xo

  8. Fabulous post – so vulnerable, so human. I too find it easier to be very giving and warm to strangers. Hey, there’s no expectations involved – just a feel-good feeling. And I too have a lot of difficulty being benevolent and letting things go with those closest to me. I struggle with that. Too many conditions, expectations, needs to be met, etc. It is so much harder to just be unconditionally giving. ‘My criticalness’ surfaces way too much.
    It’s a work in progress. I try with mediation and self-talk and continued hope that I will improve.

  9. Hi Harriet,

    You nailed it with that feel good stuff. I know my expectations are too high for myself and others. Don’t be too hard on yourself. We only need to have a little willingness to improve. My friend Jacob says to take ‘penquin steps.’ And we only need to forgive ourselves and move on. I appreciate your honesty and openness.

  10. Wow. What a thought provoking post.

    I am married to an inspirational speaker. He has summitted Mt. Everest and is the only man to do it with one arm. He speaks of compassion and giving often and does much of it in his life. Yet there are times when I feel like I’m the only person alive he has no compassion for. It’s not true, but it feels like it sometimes. Of course I’ve said it out loud in moments when we were having a bit of a spat over something stupid. Still I know the impact is there when I actually say it.

    But the reason I’m making a comment on this post is because it made me realize that I act the same towards him sometimes too. I get so caught up in my world that I forget to hear what this person who is with me all the time is saying, or thinking or feeling sometimes. I’m Aquarian as well. Very creative. Very loyal. Sometimes not so compassionate.

    I know that I have said the “you are compassionate to everyone else in the world but me” comment to him and it’s really me I’m talking about too. Cause that’s the way it goes. When pointing a finger there are 3 more pointing back at oneself.

    It’s probably why I have such close bonds with all of my dogs over my life. They are the quintessential model of unconditional love!

    Thank you for such a personal post. It brings a lot real things to the surface for those who read it to think about.

  11. “Love” your post Tess. How true, it is so much easier to reach out to those we don’t know because we have no emotional connection with them. We can have expectations of our loved ones that are not being met in our eyes and that’s where I can sometimes get into trouble. Learning to let those I love live their lives in whatever form they may chose has been a gift. It was a lesson that came the hard way, but sometimes those are the best. Having compassion for my family members and close friends is something I try to remember at all times.

    • Cathy,

      ” Learning to let those I love live their lives in whatever form they may chose has been a gift.” A while back we talked about topics for your blog. Because this is your gift I think it would be an excellent topic. It can’t be said enough. Others are entitled to live their life in whatever form they may choose. I think there is even a possible book inside you;) xo

  12. Jt,

    Thanks for leaving such a self-revealing comment. When we become ‘real’ we give permission to do the same.

    Often we want others to give us what we won’t give ourselves. My guess is that you have more compassion for others than you do for you. So if you wouldn’t mind some homework list the last three times you could have offered yourself compassion but didn’t. Then make up for that by being more gentle with yourself in the future. are worthy of it.

  13. You inspired me today, thank you.

  14. Thank you so much for your words Tess, and for sharing your unique, loving, and yes, bold spirit. I loved every word, but even more than that, I loved the spirit that flows through the words.

    I want you to know it is a blessing, and an expanding blessing to get to know you better. I’m very glad also to spend some time at Katie’s site and I will be back here.

    A remarkable journey we are on together. So happy to be sharing it with you. Say hi to Katie for me won’t you?

    • Hi Christopher! Glad you’ve found your way to my blog. Do drop by again. Yes, this journey is remarkable if we choose to love it and each other.

    • Hi Christopher,

      You are so kind and I appreciate the compliment coming from a wise friend like you. Like I said earlier today, you can call me anytime you want to talk blogging;) And also someday I hope come visit you and Joanne in person! xo

  15. Eva

    I’m going to write out those dot points this morning, and tape them somewhere noticable. If everyone acted on them everyday, the world would be far more full of love and grace.
    Amazing post. Thanks you

  16. Eva,
    Thanks for taking action. Everything we do counts. Your change will effect everyone around you. And more ripples from there. I’m glad I could help.

  17. i find also, that with our closest ones we love, we tend to be more critical and judgmental of
    but a little bit of compassion
    eating up that hateful word you are about to say
    just stop and calm down
    makes it more easier to love
    and to see things from their perspectives

  18. Thank you, Tess, and Katie too for hosting this touching post. So right on. And Tess? I’ve watched you spread love all over the blogosphere. It’s great to hear you talk your walk for us! Cheers.

  19. You’re funny Patti. I feel safe over here at Katie’s. My kids don’t read her blog. However I did add a link. If they would give me permission to share I my blog would blow up! LOL Seriously out loud. The oldest is 39 so I have that many years of stories times four. Oh I can’t forget hubs. Heck they’re still giving me stories.xo

  20. ije

    thank you for your touching post.

    i love how you were real about how long it takes to heal, forgive and see our role in whatever conflict we’re facing. i’ve got some stuff i’ve been working on for YEARS!!!

    growing up i was told i was too soft and too sensitive and naive for seeing the best in others. i have had to learn how to see the best in people and see them for who they are without idealizing them.

    i’ve recognized i have this tendency to hold on to stuff for so long for a false sense of protection. and in the end, i’m hurting myself because all i really want is to love without the fear of being hurt. when you practice ho’ponopono and taking 100% for how you’re feeling, it builds up the courage to release this fear and trust that you can walk through the world with an open heart and it actually feels much “safer” to do so.

    loved this piece! thank you:-)

  21. Hi Tess and Katie,
    Wonderfully written and including many truths in which I’m sure we all share.
    Thank you &
    be good to yourself
    David

  22. Thanks David for your kind words!

  23. Tess,

    I think this is my all time favorite of all the posts that you have written! There is profound wisdom here gained from the human sadness and pain we all face each and everyday. Thank you for teaching us how to love unconditionally.

  24. Sandra,
    Thanks for you loving words. Katie has a way of bringing out the best in people. It showed up in my writing here. I know you’ve read my blog for a long time so your words mean a lot.

  25. Leticia

    Came across you blog today, and so glad I did!