Decades of research indicate that true FabYOUlousness stems from cultivating twelve distinct traits that enable one to navigate life’s rough patches with greater ease, enjoy life’s pleasurable moments more fully and feel content regardless of circumstances. Though this might sound like a tall order, the good news is that most of us already possess each of these twelve traits to some degree–it’s just a matter of learning to tap into them more consistently. For the next twelve months, we will be focusing on one of these FabYOUlousness factors per month in an effort to harness its power and to build a solid foundation of FabYOUlousness. So far, the factors that we have focused on in our series have included optimism, choice, purpose and health. This month’s Factor is LOVE.
FabYOUlous Factor #5: LOVE
As it turns out, the Beatles were on to something when they crooned that famous line “all you need is love”. According to Dan Baker Ph.D. and co-author of the book What Happy People Know, having a sense of compassion for the people in your life and knowing that you are deeply cared for in return is one of the biggest predictors of a FabYOUlous life.
Whether it is the thrill of romantic love for a partner or nurturing parental love for a child, feelings of companionship provide a comforting sense of belonging that enhances overall life satisfaction. These loving feelings don’t always happen naturally but fortunately, they can be cultivated. Keep reading for a list of ideas on how to bring more love into your life.
10 Ways to Cultivate More LOVE in Your Life
1.) Understand that not all love is romantic love. Sure, it is nice to have a special someone in your life who makes your heart go pitter patter and who longs to grow old with you. However; not being in a romantic relationship does not mean that you can’t have an abundance of love in your life. Love exists between friends, family members and even with pets. You can love certain activities that make you feel alive; you can love music, books, cuisine etc. Don’t think that the lack of a romantic partner means that there is a scarcity of love in your life–that does NOT have to be the case.
2.) Enjoy your life and find pleasure in your own company. Don’t be that sad girl who spends her time moping around, desperately looking for love and bemoaning the fact that she doesn’t have it. People are naturally attracted to happy, fun loving individuals. Learn to find happiness inside of yourself rather than depending upon other people to make you happy. As you learn to love yourself and do your own thing, others will be drawn to you thus increasing your opportunities to cultivate loving relationships with new friends and potential romantic partners.
3.) Get out there. Yes, cocooning yourself in your bedroom watching Netflix by yourself all weekend might be more comfortable but is it going to bring more love into your life? Probably not. Instead, make the effort to break out of your comfort zone a bit and try some new experiences. Take up a new hobby that gets you out of the house (a good friend of mine met her husband while playing frisbee golf) or enroll in a class that interests you. Every time you put yourself out there, you increase your chances of meeting new people and making new friends. Who knows, maybe your soul mate is also planning to take that Salsa dance class that you’ve been thinking about joining? You’ll never know if you’re stuck in your room watching reruns of Pretty Little Liars…alone.
4.) Treat people with loving kindness. We all know the Golden Rule (do unto others as you would have them do unto you) but do we actually practice it on a daily basis? Someone who shows love and acceptance to others will naturally attract more love and acceptance into her own life. Kindness is a very desirable trait. If you treat yourself and others with love and kindness, you will find that more people will want to be a part of your life, thereby increasing your opportunities for loving connections.
5.) Take good care of yourself. Does your hair need a trim? How’s your manicure looking? When was the last time you had a massage? Too often we allow ourselves to become so busy that our own self-care falls to the bottom of our priority list. How though can we expect to fully love others if we aren’t willing to fully love ourselves? Loving ourselves enough to take care of ourselves has multiple benefits. First–a little extra pampering feels good and therefore leaves us feeling happier. This causes other people to take notice and want to be near us because people are attracted to happiness. Secondly, taking care of ourselves leaves us feeling more confident (I always feel like a million bucks after getting a manicure–don’t you?) and people are drawn to confidence. When we make self-care a priority in our life rather than feeling like it is too self indulgent or a waste of time, we show the world that we love ourselves and are therefore worthy of more love.
6.) Schedule a game night. No–we are not suggesting that you spend even more time playing xbox. Instead, why not invite the family or some friends to join you in a good, old-fashioned board game, or a nerve wracking game of Jenga (or better yet, Jenga with a Twist)? Heck, even Beer-Pong will work. Whether you choose Yahtzee, Monopoly, Dominoes or Pinochole doesn’t really matter. What matters is the fact that you are breaking up the monotony of your normal routine and making real time to socialize with friends or family. Building connections in fun ways like game night is a wonderful way to reconnect with those you love and will leave you feeling more cared for and loved as in return.
7.) Think positive and be grateful. An attitude of gratitude has numerous positive benefits (click here to read more about the benefits of a daily gratitude practice). One gratitude practice that I try to do on a regular basis is to go through the alphabet and think of five things that I am thankful for that begin with each letter. I usually do this at night as I am drifting off to sleep. I rarely make it past the letter L but it sure is a nice way to ease into sleep. Giving thanks and showing appreciation for your blessings is one of the quickest ways to feel loved and supported. Gratefulness will also attract more positive events, situations and people into your life thus expanding your opportunities to give and receive love.
8.) Meditate on who you are and who you want to become. Sure…your Facebook wall can tell you a lot about what your life looks like on the outside–but does it match up with what’s going on on the inside of you? Spend a little time meditating on this question. Do you like the person that you are now? Are there positive aspects of your being that you’d like to see expanded? Are there things that you’d like to change? Taking time to meditate on these kinds of questions is a great way to bring more love into your life because it allows you the space to grow and become more of the person that you want to be. This in turn, will attract more of the right kind of people into your life and allow for more loving interactions.
9.) Touch. Okay–as a disclaimer, this is not an invitation to get creepy. Don’t touch anyone who doesn’t want to be touched. However; numerous scientific studies have shown that human beings need touch in order to feel secure and to thrive. Touch can be anything from a high five with your co-worker after a job well done to a night of lovemaking with your spouse. Friendly, amorous, familial or comradely–different types of touch can lead to increased feelings of connection, affection and love.
10.) Put out what you want to receive in. I am a firm believer that the universe gives back to us according to what we put out into the world. I’ve experienced this first hand enough times to know that it works…every. single. time. If you want to experience more abundance in your life, express more gratitude. If you want more joy, spread joy and happiness to others and…if you want more love in your life, express more love for those around you. Some people refer to this notion as the Law of Attraction, others call it magnetizing or sowing seeds. I don’t really care what it’s called, all I care about is the fact that IT WORKS. If you want more love–be more loving. It’ll work. I guarantee it.