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Newsletter Dated: 5/2/2004 5:33:10 PM
Subject: Happiness Tips from Tina: Where is love?
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Happiness Tip: Where is love?
Probably the most prevalent question I'm asked in my counseling practice is "Where is love?" Clients want to know why they can't find a successful life partnership, why a friend or family member won't respond as they would like, even why they don't love themselves. In a perfect world, love wouldn't be something we have to learn – if you believe in a loving cosmos, then we were all conceived in Love, and it's Love that created us. But, we live in a human world, and we're all imperfect beings, falling short time and time again in our attempts to love one another and even to love ourselves.
So, we have to learn to love, and even learn to be loved. The more we can learn to think of ourselves surrounded by Love, living in Love, breathing Love in and out, the more we begin to feel it, and the more we attract it. As we understand this, we begin to meld our imperfect, human world with the larger, more expansive world of Love, and things begin to happen that we cannot anticipate. Expecting a miracle, as long as we really strive to understand what miraculous means, will actually make it happen. It's not really magic, unless you believe as I do, that the mind is a miracle in itself.
Think of it this way: every opportunity we have to be loving is a course in emotional growth – thinking about love and relationships as a learning experience will make it easier to increase your loving potential.
Most of us are quite practiced in taking courses. If you sign up for an algebra course, for example, you know what you'll face: 10 (or so) weeks of learning new material and homework assignments consisting of more and more complex problems based on the material learned. You may grumble about the homework load, or complain about the teacher, but you never think you've been given the problems as punishment. Problems are a natural part of the educational process.
Life, too is a classroom with many classes. One of the most rigorous courses is Love 101. It's required, no one escapes it, and the skills learned are useful for an entire lifetime. The syllabus for this class includes love of self, family, and friends. The advanced syllabus includes love of enemies and those who disappoint, hurt or frustrate us. All of the problems presented are to help us stretch and grow emotionally.
Every relationship you have is a learning lesson in love, both of yourself and of the other. By keeping in mind you are a student, and problems are to learn from, you will make life easier, growth faster, and everything will make more sense.
Your homework is to learn about love. This week's assignment might be some difficulty with a friend or family member. How are you going to solve the problem of loving that friend who's not treating you well? How are you going to turn an abrasive situation into a smooth path? Or maybe the person who's not being so nice to you is actually yourself. So, what can you do, when you're at odds with you, to reconcile and turn the criticism into appreciation and love for self? Sometimes a romantic partner or spouse is the biggest challenge. What if your partner is not listening to you, or resisting your ideas? How can you love that, and make enough room in your heart to hear him or her first, and help the atmosphere change from hostile to loving? And what if your assignment is creating a romance where none exists? How can you do that with love for yourself, and with the positive belief that there's enough love in this imperfect world that you can have what you want?
Once you've been disappointed or hurt, being afraid is natural, and it's even a healthy response to facing a situation you've had trouble with before. Your fears are saying, in effect "I've had a bad time with this before -- I don't feel prepared to do it again." Rather than letting that message frighten you away, learn to love your emotions for wanting to keep you safe, and discover a new, slower, safer path to tread. But don't give up on the goal. You have learned a lot in your lifetime, and all of us can always learn something more about love.
Learn to make a place in your life and your heart where love can be comfortable enough to settle in and relax.
I wish for you all the love you can imagine, and more.
(adapted from "The Unofficial Guide to Dating Again" and "It Ends With You)(c)Tessina 2004
Catch my radio show on the web: "The Psyche Deli: delectable tidbits for the subconscious" every Thursday. 4-5:00 PM PST live on www.wpmd.org and on the Leisure Talk Radio Network at www.leisuretalk.net every 12, 4, and 8 a.m. & p.m. EDT. Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. See www.tinatessina.com for more information.
Online Classes for Continuing Education Credit
Through my website, you can get CE credits online based on my books:
It Ends With You
How to Be a Couple and Still Be Free
The Real 13th Step
To sign up for classes or browse my books, visit www.tinatessina.com
I welcome your feedback and support, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wishing you joy,
Tina B. Tessina, PhD
This message came just at the right time in my life as I'm facing
Some very troubled times right now. I'm going to write you a letter and look
Forward to your response. Donna
Thank you very much, Donna;
I'm glad to know it helped.
I have a magnet that hangs on my fridge...
It has a picture of a small girl coloring with crayons. She is saying...
"Dear God... You must have had lots of colors when you created the world."
And you are one of the bright colors, Nikky!
That was a nice spin on how to take the negative about
our personalities and turn it into a positve.
Thanks, Hope you have a great day.
Thanks a bunch, Evelyn: I hope it was helpful, and you made my day great!
This is a particularly effective line that paints a vivid picture and makes the point clearly understood on an emotional level.
"Your favorite color may be blue, your least favorite orange, but you'll find you can't paint the sunset over the ocean without both."
I'm glad it spoke to you, Laura.
Hi Tina, I really like "The Colors of you." I feel that my is life is very close to the life I always dreamed of living. John
That you're happy makes me happy.
Visit Tina B Tessina at: http://www.authorsden.com/tinabtessina