When most people envision the ideal relationship, they think of engulfing, inseparable love. Being “attached at the hip” is typically an early sign that you and your new love share the ever-consuming, romantic high of a Nicholas Sparks novel.
You want to keep learning about each other, acting as sponges to the other’s every word and affection.
So, how in the world can detachment actually strengthen an intensely loving and growing relationship?
Detachment is one of the most important aspects in achieving true, profound fulfillment. Believe it or not, practicing detachment while remaining vulnerable will benefit you in remarkable ways.
Here are some of the ways detachment can help you:
1. You'll worry less.
Worry can be seen as somewhat of a wasteful emotion, similar to fear. Both are negative, anxious feelings attached to thoughts that do not exist because they have not yet occurred. Why waste your precious mental energy on something that hasn’t even happened yet? If you worry because of past experiences, remind yourself that this (and every moment from now on) is a brand new, unrelated experience. Learn from the past, but don’t allow it to hinder your future. Detach yourself from any fear or worry, express gratitude for the present, and watch your tension and anxiety fall away.
2. You'll accept more.
When you detach yourself from “what should be” or “what could be” and focus on what is, you open a whole new door into the splendor of acceptance. Take a moment to acknowledge what you hope for the future, and then release the thought into the universe. Have faith in the direction that your life (and your love) will go. Simply remember: What will be, will be... and no amount of dwelling will change that.
3. You'll have increased productivity.
With less time spent on burdensome thoughts or tasks, it leaves more time to live your life (and savor your love). When the mind is swirling with what-ifs and worry, it takes away from enjoying this very moment. It’s amazing how much time is lost on “shoulda-coulda” thoughts. Realize when these thoughts begin to consume your mind and ask yourself, how is this affecting me in this very instant? How is this affecting my relationship? Can I be doing something else right now to benefit myself?
You will see that by allowing your mind to drown in too much thought, you are only wasting the time you have. Stop brooding and start living. You will thank yourself later.
4. You'll achieve peace of mind.
The instant you recognize what detachment really means and how it feels to practice it in your daily life, it will feel like a huge breath of fresh air. You will feel empowered, enlightened, and grateful. The beautiful thing about this is how it can change your life: Purely by redirecting the thoughts in your mind from obsessive and concerning, to appreciative and blissful. Your face will shine and you will be more pleasurable to be around... And who doesn’t want to be in love with someone who exudes love and inner peace?
5. Experience more love.
I deeply believe in the Oxygen-Mask Theory in all aspects of life: you must truly love and accept yourself first, and know you are deserving of it, in order to provide your best self in any relationship with anyone else. Otherwise, you are not only being unfair to yourself, but unfair to your counterpart. Just as your sweetheart deserves to be happy and unconditionally loved, so do you. Remind yourself of that every day.
Detaching ourselves from certain emotions, especially those intensified within a romantic relationship, becomes much easier once you realize that emotions are only temporary. Life is a series of change; this includes the change of your significant other from who he (or she) is now, to whom he or she will be in ten years.
Circumstances are temporary, frustration during difficult times is temporary, and even expectations are temporary. Unconditional love and acceptance are the only worthwhile constants. Choose to focus on the constants and detach from ever-changing emotions, and see your love life (or even single life) flourish more than ever before.