“I’ve been taking on a new direction
But I have to say
I’ve been thinking about my own protection
It scares me to feel this way”

Did you recognize the song? Most people know Tina Turner’s version of it, but lately I have been listening to the one by Prides. Maybe you want to play the song while reading this.

However, one interprets the song, it reminded me of so many stories where people gave up the chance of love, in order to protect their heart. Not because the one they fell in love with is necessarily someone truly bad, but just because the fear of being hurt (maybe again) was bigger than the chance of it working out. When I say love, I mean any kind of love. The person we love. The job we love. The city we love. The new project we love. This idea we totally fell in love with. Love is universal. We can love it all, from a person to a pen. It is simply a kind of affection we have for someone or something else, that is much stronger than just a simple affection. It makes our heart sing, we can feel it in our heart, in our stomach, in our bones. We simply feel something good, very good. Love, this emotion can be so strong, that it scares us. 

Love is strong enough to make us do something we thought we were not able to do. 

We like things, we thought we didn’t like. We are not sure whether we discover a new side of ourselves or if we are being blinded by love. It is like a magnet. It attracts us to something, no matter what our mind thinks about it. Isn’t this what movies and countless people teach us? They warn us to not get to engaged in love, because we can be blinded and do things that hurt ourselves and others. We might regret it. In fact, when you hear other people talking about love, it often sounds like a kind of dangerous drug. When truly, it is an emotion, we can’t control anyways. We can try not to fall in love. We can try to focus on our mind, keeping life as logical as it possibly can get. We can make every decision based on studies, numbers, experience and common sense. We can suppress it. We can suppress until we can’t. And believe me, the seemingly most heartless people, do have a heart and fell in love before or will. We can run from it. It will cost us an enormous amount of energy, we need to be smart and completely shut down our emotions or focus on the most negative ones we ever experienced, in order to fight the magnetic pull. It often works. We get away from it. But it won’t leave us the same as before. 

When our heart wants something, it means, our soul wants it, which again means, we need it for some reason. This is the epitome of the fight between mind and heart. While the mind is a genius tool for all the material, tangible things in life, the heart is our innate compass through life’s experiences. It guides us, every single day on a subconscious level. Which means the most stubborn, logical, strict people are still guided by their heart to a certain extend. But every time we make a final decision against its will, we hurt it, we hurt ourselves. At first, we might think we did a great job at making the (what we thought aka our pre-conditioned mind though was) right decision against our heart telling us otherwise. While we are proud of our strength, we won’t feel good in somehow. Which doesn’t make sense, because we just made the right decision, didn’t we? We might look through our check-list again, which reassures us, that we acted in the right way or talk to someone who has the same opinion and we just ignore this negative emotion that we can still feel somewhere inside. Or our stomach hurting, or our chest feeling tight or this slight dizziness. Probably it’s the weather, or the stress or something. No. It is our heart, telling us we made the wrong decision. It is the heart’s pain we feel but don’t want to feel and suppress it as good as we can.

For what?

For the sake of keeping things just as they are? For the sake of seemingly controlling our lives? For the sake of someone else? For the sake of what, really?

Humans like to have everything under control. It is our natural instinct to survive. The more control we have over everything around us, and over ourselves, the saver we are.

What great things in this world happened without risk? What great things were invented that did not feel scary first? What great things in this world haven’t been laughed at, when they were just an idea? Is there anything great that doesn’t come with a certain amount of pain or at least discomfort along the process?

All those great inventions were created by people who were passionate about what they were doing, they were in love. Mothers lifting trees after accidents to rescue their babies, is not a myth but the result of the unbelievable power love has. Shouldn’t that be admired? Shouldn’t we admire this emotion which makes us do things, we thought were impossible?

But that is the point of those who are scared of love, isn’t it? Because sometimes it makes us do things, that end up being a bad decision after all. This is when we feel having been blinded. We feel betrayed. The worst betrayal after all, we betrayed ourselves, we lost control.

Why would our heart want to have or do something that is not good for us or other people we love?

Because we are here to keep learning, growing, evolving and making experiences of all kind. We humans are very attached to labeling experiences as good or bad, better and worse. When it differs so much how different people react to the same experiences. For one it is the worst thing that ever happened, for the other person it is the best thing that ever happened. The idea of good and bad is very relative and subjective. It is not a universal concept. Whereas love is universal. It is something that every human can experience, that we all feel. It is considered something good for all of us, some people just fear its power.

We all have been through challenges in our lives. Most extremely successful people have been through more than tough times before they became successful and the struggle never ends, it just changes. But they are grateful for those experiences. They made them strong. If it doesn’t kill you, it makes you stronger. It does. This is why our heart sometimes chooses a path, that might hurt us. Our heart wants us to be strong, resilient, flexible, adaptable and feeling it all. We can feel it all. The negative emotions and the positive emotions. It is not a punishment but a way of learning. We all have goals and dreams. Often we are not ready to have or be that dream. We first need to grow into this person. Very much like, if you want to be a doctor and save people’s life, you first need to go to school. And parts of it, parts of learning how to do that, suck. They are hard, annoying, you will experience failure, you will hit rock bottom at some point. And when you do, this is the moment we decide whether we become the person that is able to handle our dream or not. 

Rock bottom is the time where we either turn back or move on.

Falling in love with a country, deciding to move there can be scary. But we are so in love with the idea of the life we would have there, that we decide to do it. It might turn out just as we imagined, better or the worse decision we made so far in our lives. But why risking two out of three options that are really good, just because we are scared of one of them? Rock bottom means, we can also go back. As long as we don’t face death, we always have a choice. That is as simple as it is.

Don’t be afraid of love. Choose to embrace it. 

To experience it and all the experiences it brings with it. Your heart knows what it is doing. It has nothing to do with being naive or weak when we follow our heart. The truth is, it means we have courage. Courage has its origin in the Latin word cor, which means heart. The original meaning of courage is living according to our heart’s desire. When we don’t follow our heart’s desire, we decide to give in to fear. And this can be the right choice for this time in your life. But just know, that your heart will never stop talking to you. It will keep communicating with you. Telling you where to go, what to do, and it is strong. Maybe stronger than anything we know, stronger than fear. Risking one’s own life, for the person we love, is not foolish. It is the power of the heart and a decision, many people would choose over and over again. Your heart wants you to be happy and experience life to its fullest. Is that so scary? Maybe. But wasn’t the first kiss scary but worth it? Wasn’t the first time getting swallowed by a wave while learning to surf scary but worth it? Wasn’t it scary to start your new job or own company but worth it? Wasn’t learning how to walk scary and painful every time we fell but worth it? It is all your decision. Simply know based on what you choose.

Love might be the strongest force we have and know. The most successful and powerful people in history, during times where there was no marriage for love but only for power, broke the rules because they were in love. It is nothing new. The only new is, that we don’t have to fear our lives anymore. Choose the job you love. Choose the people around you, you love. Choose the life you love. 

When love is the most powerful force, imagine what it means when you choose what you love.