At times we get caught up in the maze searching for someone else when we should be trying to find our own way through. Someone to solve all of our problems. Someone to make us feel less alone; less crazy; whole.

We spend so much time focused on this person that in the process we lose ourselves — our brilliance, our light, our fire; whatever it was that made us feel attractive enough to pursue said person in the first place. The more we try so hard to get another’s attention, the less we attend to ourselves. We empty our cup without finding the capacity to refill it. We forget that, in the words of Maya Angelou, love “doesn’t just hold — that’s ego. Love liberates.”

You Are Whole: Why You Must Trust Your True North

You Are Whole: Why You Must Learn to Trust Your True North

I was looking for someone to inspire me, motivate me, support me, keep me focused… Someone who would love me, cherish me, make me happy, and I realized all along I was looking for myself.

If the “love” you are experiencing for another individual doesn’t liberate you to extend that love to yourself, it’s time to cut the thread.

I won’t claim I’m an expert here. I’m not. Instead I’m a person who has experienced first-hand the shift from dependence to independence and the joy it sparks. How freeing it is to stop feeding another person’s over-inflated ego to make room to nourish your own soul.

A lovely phrase to aid this nourishment (from Gravitas by Caroline Goyder) is, “Trust your true north.”

Ask yourself: is my true north a future where I depend entirely on another person in order to feel whole? Or is my true north the best future I can possibly envision for myself, alongside a partner who completes me without filling the gaps (in wellbeing, mood and perspective) that I must fill on my own?

The truth is that you are your own lighthouse. Only you know the way for you, and only you will be able to tell you when you’ve reached the end-result. Stop wasting so much time trying to impress those who don’t see the light in you, and instead get still and know yourself. Come back to you. Home-base.

You may have drifted oceans away from yourself but there is still time to sail back, if you wish.

And when you return, think of all the wonderful things you can do. The healing you can share. The light you can shine. The goals, once insurmountable, that you can finally start to climb toward.

The trick is this: become the person you would like to spend your life with, and your circumstances in love naturally shift. Or so I hope.

It will take a lifetime to find out.