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Empathy - A Love Skill

Synopsis: This mini-love-lesson starts with Katrina’s enlightening complaint; then goes on to explain empathy; empathy and love; empathy in erotic intimacy; and ends with a discussion of what it takes to be love empathetic.


Katrina’s Enlightening Complaint

“Dammit, stop giving me advice! For once try to feel what I feel instead of trying to fix my problem, or fix me!” Katrina shouted this at her lover, Kevin.

Kevin was speechless but looked hurt and quite confused. After a bit he managed to stammer, “I don’t know what you mean. I thought you wanted my help”.

Katrina replied, “I do, but the way to help me is to give me your empathy not your advice”.
Frustrated and dejected Kevin responded with, “I guess I really don’t know what that is or how to do it. I thought giving you solutions and advice are what you wanted and that showed I care.”
With a sigh Katrina then said, “That sort of helps but it does it very poorly. I don’t want what comes out of your head, I want what comes out of your heart! I want your heartfelt feelings. That is the medicine that helps.”

Kevin looked baffled. Katrina sighed again and said “Listen closely. Empathy means to feel the same type of feeling I’m feeling, and to do it with me. If I’m sad, be sad that I’m sad, and do it with me; if I’m angry at someone be angry at them at least a little also. If I’m happy be happy with me and for me. When you see or hear me have a feeling imagine you’re in my shoes having that same feeling and feel it too, or at least have some very similar feeling and show it on your face, and in your tone of voice and in what you say. If you don’t do that it feels like you’re indifferent to me or only sympathizing with me, or maybe having pity for me and you aren’t really connected to me.

“Especially when I’m hurt or upset, but also when I’m joyful, I want to feel our love connection and it is empathy that makes that happen, not ideas. Go into your heart and figure out, or remember when you felt the feelings I’m having, and have some of them again. That gives you a heartfelt understanding instead of a mental understanding of what I’m experiencing, and it shows me you really are with me and I’m not alone. When you do that it helps enormously and it makes me feel close to you and like we’re bonded together in real love.”

Kevin then tentatively but with a caring tone of voice said, “Right now you’re struggling to be patient with me, and under that you have some hurt that I haven’t understood. And because of that hurt you got angry with me or maybe just frustrated?”

Katrina then threw her arms around Kevin and gave him my great big kiss and proclaimed, “Wow! That’s it. You got it! That was wonderful! It is the most empathetic thing I’ve ever heard you say and it really touched my heart. You do understand don’t you?

Kevin replied, I’m at least starting to understand and I’ll keep working on it.”

Empathy Explained

Empathy, as used here, means that you emotionally understand and share another’s emotional feelings and sometimes also their experiences, perceptions and psychological personal processes. Empathy is the ability to share someone else’s emotions or have corresponding emotions similar to another’s. It implies a sense of personal involvement and personal connection which suggests that you have, to some degree, become psychologically infused with another’s feelings and that you care about their experiences.

It suggests that when another person has a strong feeling you can imagine, or fantasize, or remember your own similar feelings and you can emotively place yourself in their position – feeling what they are feeling or at least something very similar. When you empathize you have a sense of being in another’s place, along with them, feeling what they are feeling at least to some degree, sometimes quite strongly.

Personal empathy differs from personal sympathy in that the sympathy means to either have a feeling of harmonious affinity for someone or to have a sorrow for another’s suffering condition. Feeling sorry for someone can be done while feeling emotionally apart and distant from another. Personal empathy is a much more intimate, connected feeling. Sympathy is similar to and sometimes synonymous with pity.

Empathy and Love

Healthy, real love is very much about connection. Empathy demonstrates loving connection in love relationships often better than anything else. Demonstrated empathy also delivers love’s healing effects more effectively and with more impact than just about anything else in many relational situations, especially when someone has been hurt or harmed. Empathetic expression communicates that your loved one is not alone, that someone cares about them, right there and right now in whatever they are experiencing.

Loving empathy communicates to your loved one that they are highly valued and personally cared about. When empathetic love is received well it seems to stimulate all sorts of neurochemical and biological healing, enriching and energizing processes in the recipient but also to some degree in the sender of empathetic love.

Sending love by empathetic expression also is one of the most efficiently powerful ways to get love across to someone else. The facial expression of love-filled, empathetic understanding sometimes only takes a second but may make a world of difference in another person’s life. Loving empathy expressed in the tone of voice of a single word or sentence, likewise, has been known to revive, revitalize and re-motivate a person in dire straits.

Expressing empathy with a gesture or a simple touch is been known to abolish despair and despondency. Love-filled, empathetic gestures like a thumbs-up or other hand motions sometimes can create powerful, connection feelings and enormously energize a loved one’s efforts. Love-filled empathy expressed with the sounds and looks of joy also often can be tremendously encouraging and bonding in all sorts of different types of love relationships.

Empathy in Intimacy

One of the greatest joys in true ‘lovemaking’ can be having a strong, empathetic connection and experience with the person you are making love to and with. Taking joy in another’s joy and experiencing erotic ecstasy because this person you love is experiencing an erotic ecstasy can provide what seems like a magical and mystical, spiritual and oceanic connection of two souls with the universe. Empathy also can join together two truly loving people in incredible tenderness, joyous gentleness and/or in powerful passion.

What It Takes To Be Love Empathetic

Becoming empathetic and expressing empathy well first takes allowing yourself to feel your own feelings. Many people suppress or repress their emotions, emotionally distancing themselves from their own inner wisdom and guidance systems as well as from other’s, and try to live emotion free. Some allow only a few emotions, especially the emotions of power to be the only ones they value. All that gets very much in the way of being empathetically loving.

To have a good sense of what someone else is feeling takes having a good sense of what you yourself are feeling and are able to feel. Once you let yourself fully experience your own feelings, as you are born to do, you not only can get your feeling’s guidance messages but you also can go a long way to empathetically understanding the feelings of others. It helps if you consciously go to the trouble of studying emotions and what they are all about.

Reading about emotional intelligence can help quite a bit. Check out Emotional Intelligence by Dr. Daniel Coleman. Then comes learning how to identify in others what they are feeling, and being brave enough to join them there in their feelings. When someone you love is agonizing over something remember when you agonized over something, and let yourself feel that again at least to some extent. Then show in your facial expression, tones of voice, gestures, touches and statements that you are there with them in the feelings they are having. There is much more to learn about empathy.

You might want to read The Power of Empathy by Dr. Arthur Ciaramicoli & Katherine Ketcham. You also may wish to read the entry on this site titled “Catharsis Empathy”.
Hopefully this mini-lesson on empathy as a powerful skill in doing healthful, real love, will get you started or get you further up the trail of being highly love-effective.

As always – Go and Grow in Love

Dr. J. Richard Cookerly


Love Success Question
What do you think of this old folk saying “A day without tears and laughter shared with someone you love is a day wasted”?


Respect - As a Love Skill

Synopsis: This mini-love-lesson starts with a discussion of the necessity of respect in love relationships; and then talks about the nature of respect in love, respect within couple’s love; what is to be respected; and ends with the benefits of respectfulness.


Necessity of Respect in Love

In adult-to-adult love, a sense of respect for whomever you love is thought to be essential if that love is to survive and thrive.

There is much evidence to suggest that when respect is lost the love or the love relationship itself will be in danger of being lost. There may be some vestiges of love that remain but without respect adult-to-adult love is not likely to grow, or motivate the connecting and enriching aspects of love. There seem to be several forms of false love in which respect may be absent (see the entries on False Love). Healthy, real love, however, is seen to generate a sense of respect and, likewise, respect is seen to generate a greater possibility of love occurring and growing in adult-to-adult relationships.

The Nature of Respect in Love

In a love relationship when we respect someone we hold them in honor, look up to them, see their attributes and qualities, have a high opinion of them and highly prize them, tend to treat them as very special and with a kind of deference, we are proud of them, speak well of them, take their wishes into account, tend to be more thankful and appreciative of their ways of being themselves and we also give importance to what they value as important.

Couple’s Love And Respect

“I think I started falling out of love with him when he kept asking me to tell lies for him. They would be the kind of untruths that made him seem to be more than he really was. You know the type, where he insists I say he caught a bigger fish than everybody else when actually he didn’t catch any fish at all. Then he wanted me to lie in ways that cheated others out of their rightful share of things. That’s when I started losing respect for him. I tried to talk to him about it but he just got mad at me and gave himself the excuse that these kinds of lies were what everyone told. Well, they weren’t lies I told. That kind of deceit just made him seem, well, smaller in my eyes. After trying to present the positives of truth-telling and getting back only negative responses, I just didn’t want to be with him anymore.” I have heard similar stories, time and time again, in the type of counseling that helps people overhaul their approach to finding, starting or trying to improve their love relationships.

“It was not so much the fact that she kept getting horribly, sloppy drunk. It was the fact she wouldn’t do anything about it like go to AA, or find a counselor, or something, anything. As she fell deeper into alcohol she seemed to get more and more hypercritically religious. Maybe she thought that was going to fix it, but it didn’t. Slowly I just wasn’t attracted to her anymore. If she didn’t respect herself enough to own up to her drinking problem then pity was about all I could feel for her”. There are many ways that people lose respect for someone they are in a love relationship with. Sometimes it has to do with abuse or neglect. Sometimes it has to do with self-abuse and self-neglect. But in every case where respect is lost the love relationship suffers.

What’s to Be Respected

In healthy, real love what is respected usually has to do with a sort of ‘character strengths factor’. This is an internal thing like courage or kindness in one’s approach to others and to life itself. Things like integrity and steadfastness, being trustworthy and honorable, deeply caring and being passionate about a cause can rank high in garnering respect. Loyalty and a sense of honor along with an adherence to one’s own ethics also count for a lot. Talents, competencies and abilities can amass considerable respect also. However, external type factors like wealth acquirement, possession of status symbols and the defeat of others in various forms of conflict tend not to work when it comes to the respect that goes with deep and lasting love.

External factors like those may attract more envy, jealousy and hostility than respect. Having a passionate appreciation of beauty, nature, life, the rights of others, spirituality, benevolence, health and well being are what get strong respect with quality lovers. Being able to love well, love much and be lovable may be the most important factors when it comes to respect.

Respectfulness And Its Relational Benefits

Once you have a sense of respect for someone you love, it is important to add being able to demonstrate and convey that respect. Showing that you respect a person’s qualities and ways of being themselves helps to reward them for those qualities, which may cause them to increase and grow those qualities and other qualities too. Showing your respect also usually has a bonding influence which draws you closer together emotionally. Communicating to someone you love about what you respect in them also tends to help them focus on what they respect in you and others.

Hopefully this little discussion of ‘respect as a love skill’ will help you hone your own ability to sense respect and show it to those you love. There is a lot more you can learn about respect and love. To do some of that, check out the entries “Catharsis Empathy As a Love Skill” and discussions about “Affirmational Love”.

As always – Go and Grow in Love

Dr. J. Richard Cookerly


Love Success Question
Think of someone you love and what you respect about them. Now will you tell them or send them a written message that conveys that respect today?


Immunity Boosting With and For Love

Mini-Love-Lesson   #271


Synopsis: This mini-love-lesson discusses the connection between healthy, real love and its psychobiological effect on our immunity systems; then gives 10 rather different, memorably named things to do for boosting one’s own immunity functioning which relate to both self-love and other love.


Healthy Love and A Healthy You

Did you know that love is extremely helpful to your immunity system, healing wounds and fending off diseases?  Yes, being in love relationships and experiencing healthy, real love works to improve maintain and strengthen your mechanisms for disease resistance and recovery.  The more you give, receive and do healthy, functional love the healthier you tend to get.  That is the conclusion to be drawn from literally hundreds of love and health related, scientific explorations into what makes immunity mechanisms work and improve.   

Note, that in many of these studies, the word “love” is not used but rather some other euphemistic term.  Sometimes researchers shy away from using the word love and instead use terms like “affectional bonding, emotionally intimate relationships, ongoing mated relating and, a favorite of mine, “stabilized biosocially & affectively interactive”.  I find it odd that quite a few scientifically oriented researchers seem to be uncomfortable with the word love except for comparative experimental psychologists and primatologists  Therefore, finding and collecting research reports on love is a bit complicated.

People in emotionally close, mutually rewarding relationships are constantly found to have better immunity functioning and disease resistance compared with those who do not have such relationships.  Also, as people enter into healthy, real, love bonded relationships their immunity mechanisms work better and they have significantly fewer infections, especially respiratory infections like colds and the flu.

Healthy Self-Love and Improved Immunity

For reasons of healthy self-love you can do quite a lot to help your own immunity system function better.  Also, for reasons of loving others, it is good to keep yourself healthy for their benefit as well as yours.  Both you and those others who love you want to keep you around so, learning to do what you can to help your protective systems operate optimally is loving, wise and reasonable.  To assist you with that, here are 10 actions you can take.  First, note that we will be using some odd, not (yet) real words because in their odd form they may assist you to think and remember these things about immunity boosting.  Finding easier lay terms to communicate about immunity issues may just be beginning.

10 IMMUNITY BOOSTING SELF-LOVE ACTIONS

All the following are suggestions and not medical directives.  Know your own physical condition in order to choose and use them wisely.

1. Love Connect.  As often as possible make loving contact with others psychologically, physically and safely.  This includes pets, especially dogs.  Face-to-face talk is great but also can be pretty significant if done on Skype or Zoom, etc.  Auditory phone talk allows you to experience your loved ones’ voices and the effect of their tones of voice on your reduction of stress hormone production can be significant, no matter what is being said if it said lovingly.

2. Sleep.  When we are sleep-deprived, our bodies get more susceptible to infections.  During sleep, our immunity mechanisms regenerate and repair our bodies as well as work to rejuvenate themselves.  Too little sleep and too destructive a sleep pattern works to de-power our immunity systems.  So, work to get enough, good sleep.

3. Sweat.  When we sweat we rid our bodies of toxic substances that lower our body’s ability to fight off disease, counter toxicity and maintain our biological balances.  Using really hot water (not to the point of injury) to sweat works well.  Hot tubs, spas, hot baths and hot showers, along with vigorous workouts, saunas, hard and fast action sports and anything else that gets perspiration flowing are also fine.  The relaxation effect of hot water increases stress reduction and endorphin production, both of which are very good for our immunity systems.

4. Vitaminize.  Our bodies will not and cannot fight viruses and bacteria effectively if we are vitamin deficient.  A One-A-Day multivitamin/multimineral is simple, quick and probably minimally sufficient.  If you are stressed more vitamin C, B complex and zinc often are recommended.  Check with the appropriate medical specialist for what is best for you individually.

5. Zincanate.  If we get zinc deficient our chances of getting sick, with a respiratory infection especially or other breathing complications, seem to go way up.  When we put zinc in our diet by eating legumes, seeds, nuts, mushrooms, some meats, oysters, crab, lobsters and/or taking a zinc supplement we are acting in a healthy self-love way.  See a healthy diet specialist to get it just right for you.

6. Fiberize.  Generally, the more fiber foods we eat the more beneficial bacteria we have helping our metabolism make our bodies more disease resistant.  Bananas, broccoli, avocado, sweet potatoes and almonds all can be helpful, along with many other vegetables and fruits.

7. Mediterraneanize.  More than 70% of our immunity functioning is heavily influenced by our diet.  Our digestive tract handles most of the pathogens and toxic chemicals that can harm us.  But it can not do that if we do not eat right.  Generally, what is called a Mediterranean Diet works well for lots of people, over time.  That diet includes lots of vegetables, fruits, nuts, some lean meats, many types of seafood, whole-grain breads, olive oil and small portions of many other things, but not too many carbs if your life is rather sedentary.  It usually is best to avoid or limit heavily processed foods, white flour products, refined oils ,refined sugar and sugar-added-foods and especially large amounts of fatty meats.

8. Move.  Our bodies are built to move.  Without enough movement every waking hour, or so, we start to physically weaken and wane.  This, in turn, negatively affects our immunity system functioning.  Sufficient exercise enhances our in vivo responses to viral and destructive antigens and seems to delay immunological aging.  20 + minutes of fairly rigorous exercise, 3+ times a week seems to be the most common recommendation among health professionals. But even brisk walking can help if you are in the couch potato category.  You can find out what might be best for you individually from physical therapists, movement analysts, nurses, physicians and a wide variety of other health specialists.

9. Nasalate. Nasal passage health is also rather important so, give your nose and breathing some helpful attention.  Viruses get lodged in our noses, along with toxic particulate matter and other things you do not want residing there.  The longer they remain there, the more they can attack us, give our immunity systems problems and do us harm.  There are three main ways you might go about helping yourself here.  The first has to do with deep breathing exercises.  To sit straight and do deep and slow breathing for 1 minute, or more, twice or more a day makes a good start.  By the way, do not stand, we do not want you to faint if this is a new exercise to you or you have a troublesome breathing condition.

Learning yoga breathing exercises or other similar systems that get a lot of oxygen into our lungs and, thereby, boost blood circulation which helps our immunity mechanisms function better by quite a bit.  Another way has to do with aromatherapy.  That involves breathing various scents, aerosols, incense and mists recognized as having certain medicinal, generally therapeutic and anti-infection effects.  A third way has to do with using a nasal rinse to flush your nasal cavity of unwanted matter.  Sometimes that is coupled with the use of an antiseptically treated thread gently run through one’s nasal passage.  That makes for a bit of a delicate and moderately unpleasant experience, probably best first accomplished by someone well trained and acquainted with teaching the process.

10. Meditate.  Especially are health-oriented, self-love mindfulness meditation exercises associated with improved immune system functioning.  Research suggests such exercises can assist in the circulating of immune proteins which are good for fighting inflammations.  Meditation also is quite useful in stress reduction and the reduction of destructive, stressor hormone production.  Overall, healthfulness and vitality improvements also are indicated.

All 10 of the above, suggested ways are to be considered general guidelines to be checked-out by your primary health providers for their appropriateness to your individual situation and needs.

Relationship Well-Being and Its Effect on Immunity

Well functioning, love relationships can have a very positive effect on how well our immunity systems protect us.  Likewise, a poor functioning, love relationship frequently is highly stressful and, therefore, neurochemically bad for our biological, self-protection systems.  Also involved is our healthy, self-love functioning.  If it is good, probably so is our immunity system functioning more likely to be good.

One more thing.  We suggest you talk all this over with someone well trained in the healing arts, professions or sciences.  If you do that, please mention this site and all its health-related, mini-love lessons.  Thank you.

As always – Go and Grow with Love

Dr. J. Richard Cookerly

Love Success Question: Have you meditated on the fact that you are a truly awesome, huge bundle of miraculous, interwoven systems and, therefore, you are not to be taken for granted or undervalued?  If you haven’t, please do!

Gratitude - As a Love Skill

Synopsis: This mini-love-skill lesson starts with important questions about thankfulness; goes on to gratitude awareness, gratitude confusion, gratitude insensitivity, the self enrichment of gratitude, gratitude expression and ends with a thankfulness and gratitude challenge.


Thankful?

Are you good at being thankful?  Are you good at noticing what you have to be thankful for?  Are you good at identifying who you have to be thankful to?  Are you good at experiencing a sense of gratitude?  Are you good at showing your thankfulness and gratitude to those you love and those you would or might come to love?  Are you good at finding different ways to state your gratitude?  Being sincerely thankful and finding ways to convey your thankfulness or gratitude can be a very useful and constructive part of doing ‘affirmation love’, see entry “A Behavioral (Operational) Definition of Love”.  Are you aware that without gratitude sufficiently felt and thankfulness sufficiently expressed love relationships are likely to be diminished and often seriously damaged.

Gratitude Awareness

Do you agree with this statement?  Every positive and pleasurable experience of your life, and everything you achieve or accomplish, and every one of your victories, comforts and acquirements are things you have been helped to have and did not achieve all on your own.  Someone else did a lot of work with almost everything you eat before you eat it.  Someone else built the roads you travel on and the domiciles you live in as well as the structures you function in.

Someone else researched and developed the medicines you take and the tools you work with.  Most of your learning opportunities come from the endeavors of others.  Perhaps most important of all, someone loved you enough to keep you sufficiently thriving in infancy and childhood so that you stayed alive and are now able to be reading this mini-love-lesson about gratitude.  So, are you grateful for all that?

Perhaps today someone will smile at you.  Perhaps today someone will treat you nicely.  Perhaps today someone will do you a favor.  Perhaps today someone will give you a loving touch.  Perhaps today someone will make your life just a bit easier.  Perhaps today someone will say words indicating that you are loved.  Will you experience the pleasure of gratitude as these things happen?  Hopefully your gratitude awareness will be keen.  If not, work on it and be grateful to yourself for doing so.

Gratitude Confusion

Gratitude is not to be confused with guilt, obligation, sense of duty, owing somebody something in return, or anything else that might be felt as a negative.  Sadly, many people have been trained, or in essence subconsciously programmed, to cancel the joy of gratitude with one negative set of feelings or another.  Gratitude as an emotion just means you get to feel good that something good has come your way and you can have a sense of being grateful about that.  By itself gratitude does not mean that you have to, or should, or ought to do anything except have the positive experience gratitude provides.

Gratitude Insensitivity

Lots of people take for granted so many of the positive things they might otherwise be grateful for.  Many others take for granted not only the actions of, but also the people who are providing love and other strong positives in their life.  Many of the people I have dealt with in therapy stopped taking things and people for granted and became grateful only after they lost or were in danger of losing the most important people in their lives.  So many people are focused on some other aspect of life that they are blind to the things and people they could be grateful for.  Many others are insufficiently aware and grateful for the bundle of miracles they themselves are.  Did you know you are a bundle of miracles?  Everything about you and all your natural processes (biologically, psychologically and socially) can be seen as wondrous.  Dare you be grateful?

The Self Enrichment of Gratitude

Do you know that it does you good to be grateful?  First, gratefulness starts with awareness of something you appreciate and appreciation is a form of pleasure, therefore, you pleasure yourself when you experience being in a state of appreciating.  Second, gratefulness for something or someone puts you in a state of sensing a positive connection with that something or someone.  Third, both the pleasuring and the connecting senses tend to stimulate several healthful neurochemical events in your brain which are rather good for you biologically and psychologically.  Gratitude also frequently can give you something to enjoyably share with another person.

Gratitude Expressed

Gratitude shared with someone you love often increases the love and the occurrence of ‘love giving actions’ going back and forth between people who have a love relationship with each another.  Because of gratitude’s positive nature, gratitude shared can help you have or make a positive interaction and strengthen a bond with another person.  Telling someone you love that you are thankful they are in your life and that various actions that they do to express their love toward you is appreciated is best done as a free gift without any expectation of a return.  If there is an expectation of return when expressing gratitude that can be a disguised, selfish manipulation instead of just a true gift of love.  Saying thank you, if done in a perfunctory way without a true sense of gratitude behind it, may make the expression weak and nearly meaningless.

Overdoing it also has its problems.  Going on and on about something you are grateful for may produce embarrassment, awkwardness, suspicion and annoyance.  Usually the best verbal expressions of loving gratefulness are delivered clearly, strongly and shortly.  However, in intimate situations longer and more detailed, love-filled statements can work quite well.  Gifts, cards, notes and special experience gifts which express thankfulness to someone you love often are excellent ways to demonstrate love.  One of the best things about expressing your thanks to a loved one is that it can be fun.  It can be done as a surprise, a special, intimate event or as a social, laudatory and celebratory occurrence.

The gratitude challenge

Let me dare you to be grateful and from that actively thankful for things small, medium and large which others do for you, do on your behalf or do in your direction.  Let me dare you to express your thankfulness with a little more intensity than perhaps you usually do.  Let me dare you to express your thankfulness a little more frequently than is usual for you, and let me dare you to start today!

As always – Go and Grow with Love

Dr. J Richard Cookerly


Love Success Question
Right this minute, what will you be thankful for about yourself ?


Anti-Love, Non-Love & Real Love

Synopsis: This mini-love-lesson begins by addressing highly important questions concerning each of the three love action states people operate in; then goes on to describe those three love action states and their outcomes so you can evaluate yourself and others in regard to each; and ends with a discussion of quality and quantity issues related to the three states.


Three Love Action States – and Super Important Questions

How much of your life has to do with acting from love, demonstrating love and receiving love? How much of your life essentially is non-love oriented? Are there parts of your life which might be described as containing anti-love actions?

Let’s go into this a bit further by asking some related questions. If much or little of your life has to do with love (see love definition entries) what does that make your life into? If much of your life might be called non-love involved what does that do to your life? If there are important episodes in your life in which your actions are anti-love what does that turn your life into? How does all this effect those you love, or those you hope to love, and those you hope to be loved by? Do those who are important to you perceive you to be largely anti-loving, or non-loving, or quite loving and lovable?

Descriptions of the Three Love Action States

If you are, or often are seen as indifferent, uninvolved, unconcerned, apathetic about others, impersonal, perfunctory, inattentive, passive, negligent, robotic, unimpressionable, aloof, impenetrable, distracted, or unemotional – you may be living too non-love oriented.

If you are or are perceived as being deceitful, verbally or physically abusive, aggressive as opposed to assertive, offensively defensive, demeaning, degrading, deprecating, greedy, emotionally cold and rejecting, betraying, cheating, purposefully destructive, hostile, brutal, anti-caring and uncaring, hateful, negatively prejudicial, vengeful, mean-spirited, judgmental, combative, punitive, controlling and authoritarian, dogmatic and overly self-centered and selfish to the detriment of others – you may be having an anti-love impact in the way you go about at least certain aspects of your life.

On the other hand, if you are or are seen as caring, kind, compassionate, generous, friendly, personally warm, endearing, benevolent, congenial, fair and democratic, positive about and toward others, friendly, cordial, welcoming and inclusive, thankful, rejoice-full, affectionate, beneficent, of goodwill, empathetic, appropriately protective, appreciative, understanding, powerfully passionate about life in many of its aspects and about the rights and well-being of others, philanthropic, altruistic, patient, magnanimous, considerate, thoughtful, giving, merciful, as well as loving and lovable – you are likely to be going about love in your life rather well.

Outcomes Of the Three States

People who are too often anti-loving are seen as tending to destroy their love relationships. They also tend to seen as being harmful to those they would have a love relationship with.

People who too often are non-loving are seen as having their relationships slowly erode away and they are thought to often experience abandonment. They also can be seen as instrumental in the love malnourishment and love starvation of those they would have a love relationship with.

People who are sufficiently to abundantly, healthfully loving are seen as getting the happiest, healthiest and generally the most successful life and relationship results.

Quality and Quantity Issues

One way to evaluate a love relationship, be it with a lover, spouse, child, friend or family member, is to think about the quality and quantity of love experienced in the relationship. How much time is spent in actions that convey quality love? Also how much can be called non-loving and how much can be called anti-loving? Are the anti-love actions more impactful than the loving actions? Are the non-love actions more important, powerful and dramatic than the loving? These are important questions that few people seem to know to use in understanding their love relationships, including the love relationship they have with themselves. Thinking with these questions may lead to considerable improvement in how healthy love is accomplished in your life. Conversing with loved ones about these questions also may lead to “love team” improvements.

As always, Go and Grow with Love

Dr. J. Richard Cookerly


Love Success Question
Who will give you honest, accurate feedback on how you come across as to being loving, non-loving or anti-loving?