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Chocolate Pavlova from What Katie Ate

The last few days I’ve been thinking about the icing on the cake. Not actual icing (much though I love a good daydream about buttercream) but figurative icing and more precisely, figurative icing and relationships.

When we’re in love, we look to our partners to give us support, appreciation, companionship, compliments and much, much more. And that’s fantastic. After all, there has to be some sort of reward for putting up with constant mess, occasional grumpiness and fact that we can no longer have the whole bed to ourselves. I joke. Well, apart from the mess.

Of course, when we don’t feel that we’re getting those things we blame the other person. They’re no longer giving what they’re supposed to and we’re no longer getting what we need. We feel distant and unappreciated. Our love diminishes in direct proportion to the number of weeks since we last received a damn compliment. And as for ‘It’s not you, it’s me’, it most definitely is them. It’s them not doing ANYTHING RIGHT.

The cycle continues. The tears fall. The depths are plumbed.

But this is where the problem is. We’re looking for love in all the wrong places. We’re looking for love outside of ourselves. And that doesn’t work. When love is something that we expect other people to provide us with, we’re precarious. We totter between happiness and despair with nothing but the hope of a kind word to hold on to. And that’s no fun.

Wouldn’t it be better if the love that we receive from our partners is the icing on the cake, rather than the whole glorious thing? 

“Love yourself first” is old news. But it’s vital. What have you done today or this week to give yourself the love you’re looking for someone else to provide? If it’s not enough, what can you start doing to cherish yourself in the way that you want to be cherished?

If we give to ourselves we feel great and the better we feel, the better those around us treat us. It’s a win-win. It’s icing and cake.

Agree? Disagree? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.