Loving them, not saving them
Anais Nin said, “You cannot save people, you can only love them”. For those of us that have nurturing natures, this might be a hard quote to comprehend. We want to make others lives better, fix the difficulties they may be experiencing, and strive to have relationships full of peace and harmony. When we do this, it seems as though we become a magnet for those types of personalities who are in constant need of attention. Before we know it, we are so engulfed in making everyone else’s life better, that we neglect taking care of our own. It is then, that we need to find the balance that it is necessary to ensure we are living our true lives, while helping others learn the tools to take care of their own.
Throughout our lives we encounter people that are so broken, that we want to do everything in our power to do what we can to make them whole again. We often forgo our issues, because helping them with theirs makes us forget about our own. Unfortunately, we fail to realize that we don’t have the power to fix them. Only they can make that happen. We can support, encourage and motivate, but the ultimate ability to fix, lies within themselves. The more we focus on their issues and neglect our own, the harder it is to face our reality when suddenly we realize we couldn’t do what we set out to do. It is then that we are left with an even bigger struggle.
Not having the ability to save someone doesn’t mean that you don’t love them. Love is a powerful tool. However, at the end of the day, love isn’t what makes someone better. It is that person finding the inner strength to want to deal with their issues that ultimately leads them to success. If we are willing to share our knowledge, experiences, and things we have learned while we are navigating our life path, then love and support is what we can offer, and our job is done.
While we may want to save the world, we can’t. Trying to do so only negates the energy we need to live a full and meaningful life. Even though we can’t save, we can love. It is with that love that others find the inner strength to persevere and do the work necessary to make their life the best that it can be.