If You Love Someone, Pay Attention


Last week, my yoga teacher wore a shirt that said “Lovers Gonna Love,” and it got me thinking about love all week. There are so many ways that you can define love. My favorite is love, the verb. You get to love people. It doesn’t matter if they love you back. You can choose love whenever you want. It feels great. Lovers gonna love.

But what does it really mean? Here’s one idea: Love means paying attention.

Want an awesome movie example? Watch When Harry Met Sally. Here’s what Harry said to Sally:

“I love that you get cold when it’s 71 degrees out. I love that it takes you an hour and a half to order a sandwich. I love that you get a little crinkle above your nose when you’re looking at me like I’m nuts. I love that after I spend the day with you, I can still smell your perfume on my clothes. And I love that you are the last person I want to talk to before I go to sleep at night. And it’s not because I’m lonely, and it’s not because it’s New Year’s Eve. I came here tonight because when you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.”

Umm… Yeah. I love Harry. He pays attention. And Sally. She’s awkward and amazing.

But let’s break down what Harry loves: Ordering sandwiches. Nose crinkles. Talking on the phone. Not the sexiest things in the world… to us. 

Leaf_detailSo, if you want to show someone how much you love them this week, pay attention. Get specific. Share a detail. Notice something that most people would overlook. Make a creative comparison. Use a metaphor.

Then say it. Out loud. To their face.

OK, you can text. But only if you’re a Millenial.

Now, before I close out for the week, let’s turn the table, shall we?: When was the last time you paid attention, I mean really close attention, to yourself?

You may want to stop reading or roll your eyes when I ask this. But hey – you know all those successful people out there that you admire? They share a similar quality: they love themselves.

YES. That’s what it is. It’s not magic or a degree or qualification or line on a resume. Stunning people love themselves. They pay attention to their health and wellbeing – very close attention. They work on their minds and bodies. They pursue their dreams, because they’re worth it.

You’re worth it too.

So alright, lovers, get out there and love! Pay attention to your partner, your kid, your dog, your friend. Tell them all the tiny little things that make you love them.

And, in a quiet moment one morning, start the radical, beautiful, spectacular practice of paying close loving attention…

To yourself.

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