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Writing Your Own Love Story
Knowing love is a conscious choice will help you spread it with the people you cherish most.

By Gabriel Lefrancois
Putting your love story down is easier when you have a better understanding of your love.

Valentine’s Day is that time of the year when we think about hearts, flowers, cupids and of course, love. As human beings we have a natural desire and a need to feel loved. We crave this feeling and look for it even in places where it does not exist. We look for love in food and drink, in objects and activities. Yet this feeling of love originates within your heart and is most delightful when shared and mirrored by another. Living in the light of love breeds confidence, strength, joy and serves as a great cushion for the bumps and bruises of life. So how can we have more love in our life? We increase love when we cultivate in ourselves:

* The capacity and desire to be kind
* The capacity and desire to bring joy
* The capacity and desire to ease pain
* The capacity and desire to allow each other to be free

Romantic love may bring forth images of Romeo and Juliet, Antony and Cleopatra, John and Yoko. And who doesn’t wish for the glory of exalted love? How will you get more love on this Valentine’s Day and the day’s hereafter? It starts with how we treat each other, which can serve to enhance or diminish the warm tender feelings and intimacy that love creates.

The images you hold in your mind can serve to fan the flames or squelch the passion. Realizing that love is a conscious choice creates for you life’s greatest opportunity. The benefactors of this choice will be your loved ones—your significant other, your children, parents, family and friends, even strangers on the street can benefit from a genuine smile and heartfelt good wishes. And you will benefit most of all. You and only you are responsible for choosing the path of love.

Start by using your creative imagination to choose loving images that help cultivate more loving feelings. You can just as easily choose negative thoughts that will lead you down a very different path. When you realize the power of this choice your life will change. Choose love and use your intention to:

* Be Present—let go of the past and let go of your worry about the future
* Show appreciation and joy with being in the presence of your beloved
* Demonstrate compassion and the ability to relieve suffering in the other
* Let go of pride and be willing to share your feelings and ask for what you need

Forgive and let go of past hurts. Remember and nourish the qualities you appreciate and love in others rather than focus on what you do not want or what you think is wrong. The more you think about what you appreciate and love, the more it will grow in your life. Feeling gratitude for life opens the heart to love. This Valentine’s Day, rather than waiting for love to find you, may you find love waiting within. Take Cupid’s arrow and redirect it towards your heart and enjoy a day and a lifetime of renewed hope, happiness and love.

Ellen Simon, M.S., M. Ed., LPC is a nationally recognized expert in the field of mind body health. Ellen’s unique brands of audio programs are in use in hospitals and healthcare facilities across the country. Ellen is the author of over 25 titles. This article is adapted from "Food for Thought," a 6 audio CD set. For more information visit www.imadulation.com.

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Over 1 million couples turn to Hitched for expert marital advice every year. Sign up now for our newsletter & get exclusive weekly content that will entertain, educate and inspire your marriage.

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