The term unconditional love, affection without limitations and love without conditions, is a really interesting concept when you think of it. I think of how I grew up. Yes, I know that I was loved very much yet there appeared to be so many conditions and limitations; get good grades, be polite, no talking during church, behave this way or that way and if you don’t, there will be a price to pay. Now some would say that this is basic parenting rules and guidelines and that there’s consequences when we go against those rules, while some would say that these were conditions. As a young child, I took the repercussions very seriously because it often felt like the treatment received after misbehaving were sometimes much more extreme than they needed to be. Perhaps because of my very sensitive empathic nature.

As an adult, I’ve outgrown the dreamy expectations of adolescence and many of those painful trials and tribulations of young adulthood, and now I finally feel like I have an understanding of what unconditional love is really all about. Years of going within and working on untruths have revealed many wonderful truths. I recently began to lean into the possibility of not only loving Self unconditionally and those that I serve but also meeting a life partner and loving him unconditionally too.

As I leaned in to the idea of relationships, some sort of fear based reality struck me and the heavier questions started to come. Am I lovable? How will I ever meet the right person for me? Will that person return the desired feelings of unconditional love that I am willing to share? How will I connect with someone who has a clear understanding of who I am, how I show up in this world, and what I want at this time in my life? Rather than allowing myself to go into overwhelm and allow fear based thinking to creep in, I simply paused and considered that perhaps strengthening and deepening my spiritual connection to God/Spirit/ Universe and expanding my career had to come first for me. Also realizing that it was crucial for me to accept and love myself fully before finding a secure romantic partner, who can accept all of my nuances, tendencies, career, and lifestyle choices. On that note, here’s some things I’ve learned along the way about unconditional love…

It’s important to Love our so called flaws and imperfections, or as some call it, character defects! These are the spiritual jewels that alert us to the most significant parts of our journey. They are portals, revealing where we let go of the physical to embrace the spiritual more fully. Loving our perceived flaws allows us to connect to a deeper soul journey, wisdom, maturity, depth, and even transcendence. We are programmed to see them as flaws and character defects when technically they are an initiation into the deeper parts of ourselves.

It’s important to Love our painful triggers and wounds! And when we do, they will reveal what matters to us most. They will reveal to us what our deepest longings are and what we came to heal in this lifetime. I personally believe that we each chose to incarnate into the families, into these bodies, into the situations that we did, so that we could choose to experience any afflictions and struggles that are necessary to take on, in order to rise above it all.

It’s important to Love the dysfunction that shows up in the experiences that cause us to withhold and push away your friends and loved ones! The parts of us that causes delays and procrastinate our successes out of fear. These create chaos and throw us into life lessons. Each and every one of these situations help us find our humor, our own liberation, our inner child and our own Truth. They release us from caring so much about what others think about us and allow us to find a deeper love of self and rise above the judgment of others.

It’s important to Love our pain-body! It teaches forgiveness, compassion, and patience and it shows us that tolerance and sacrifice has no space in our life. It gives us the humility we sometimes need to unite together in a higher state of consciousness through integrity, intention, and right action. It shows us our own healing power and how to transform and release thoughts, feelings and emotions that no longer serve our highest and best. It teaches us how to face our perceived demons and get real with who we truly are at our core, as well as what we need to share and creatively express with the world.

It’s important to Love your insecurities. They are a gateway to the part of our genius mindset that hinder the access to higher aspects of ourselves. They reside in our subconscious and unconscious mind that has just been hidden, shut-down, or unsupported. They can lead us to our strongest gifts and our most outrageous creativity. They can help us to let go, take risks, and be comfortable in our own skin, with our own boundaries and set of standards for living.

It’s important to Love your ego identity when in crisis mode. Let it be a compass pointed at your higher self so that all actions, words, decisions and behaviors reflect the nature of your divine blueprint. Let it show you how to remove the masks, personas, programming, conditioning, and ancestral patterns. Let it teach you where you have abused free will, been less than disciplined, and allowed your fears to run your life. Let it remind you of how to be authentic, transparent, powerful, influential, and an inspirational example for others. Love and honor these aspects in yourself and those you come in contact with. Focus on where it can take you and what it truly means underneath all of its many layers, instead of focusing on how it makes you look and how it may appear to others.

When we can choose love vs. fear in all things, we can see the gift and perfection in all things. This is where we find our way home!