Face Your Fear of Heartbreak To Find True Love
When I was little, I read a lot of fairytales, and began to dream about "true love." Then it took me ten years of trial and errors in love to understand that finding true love isn't so easy like in fairy tales.
Yes, there are tricky challenges, like slaying dragons, in there. But to find true love in real life requires even more strength and courage. Because it demands me to face the thing I'm way more afraid of: heartbreak.
You know how heartbreak tastes like, don't you? That gripping pain in your chest, the salty tears, the sleepless nights, and the haunting loneliness.
I'd known these feelings so well, ever since I had my first relationship when I was 16. I'd been in 2 broken relationships, and many empty romances. One after the other, in a dizzying loop of falling in love, falling out of love, and wondering whether love existed at all.
From an anti-heartbreak freak to a love warrior
Pain after pain, it was too hard to bear that I vowed never to have a relationship again, and never to get married. I was ready to shoot a bazooka at the first Cupid flying around. No arrow for my heart, please!
After the vow, I was doing okay. I had my carefree and single life. But somewhere deep in my heart, there was a secret longing for the connection and intimacy that I could only experience in love. "But the cost is too high," I scolded myself and numbed this longing away.
Then in August 2012, at a conference in Moscow, something happened: I met a lovely Brazilian who had a really kind smile. The problem is: he's from Brazil; I'm from Vietnam - that's 10,000 miles apart! (Besides his name is way too complicated for my mother!)
My heartbreak alert was ringing like fire alarm. I declared to him as we sat across each other at lunch: "I don't want a relationship and don't want to be anybody's anything!" (The direct translation: "Leave me alone please." But I was nice, of course.)
I left the conference without saying goodbye to him, with no regret, and no string attached.
Four days after, that Brazilian messaged me on Facebook. And for some reason, I replied. The rest was history.
Fast forward to now - November 2016, I'm married to that Brazilian. I'm his wife. With him, I'd fought against impossible challenges and kept our love alive across those 10,000 miles. Four years, three continents, 15 countries, and countless of planes, and trains, and cars, just to find each other and learn to love all over again.
How did I transform? From that anti-heart-break freak to the kind of woman who, against all odds, refuses to give up on love?
It wasn't just determination and sheer will. I needed to change at the deepest level: my belief.
Well, not something they teach in fairytales! How do you change your belief while you already believed in something else? I struggled to discover the answer.
First, change the story you tell yourself.
You're what you think. If you keep telling yourself: "true love doesn't exist, and I must protect myself against heartbreak at all cost." That's what you'll find. But if you just change the script, telling yourself another story - a better story - your life is bound to change.
I wrote my new and better scripts, called them my "love mantras." I whispered them to myself whenever I feel the presence of fear.
- Mantra 1: "I choose to believe that heartbreak is a part of my diverse and beautiful human experience."
- Mantra 2: "I choose to believe that with time and compassion, I can heal my heart."
- Mantra 3: "I choose to believe that the past heartbreaks teach me what I need to learn to be ready for my soulmate."
Secondly, choose to act according to your new belief.
Belief is useless without action. In fact, action is belief in work cloak.
"How would I love if I have no fear?"
"What would I do in this situation if I'm no longer afraid?"
Then do it. If you still feel scared, do it anyway.
I don't mean for you to throw yourself into the arms of the first heartbreaker on the street. There is a big difference between a fearless lover and a heartbreak-fetish. You deserve good, kind love that nourishes your soul. And to find it, you need to be brave enough to get out of your shell and let love in.
Replacing the story you tell yourself and act according to the new belief, and the neurons in your brain will rewire. There will come a time when you no longer need to make a conscious effort to believe. Fear will slowly dissolve. And you're free to walk your journey to true love.
Does true love exist? Of course, it is. I feel it in every bone in my body. I wish for you to feel it too.
So say the love mantras, take brave actions, heal yourself from your old wounds. And there will come a time
...when the healing is complete - which is said to be around one year after the heartbreak, longer or shorter depends very much on your story.
...when you feel a kindling sensation of wanting to connect with another soul
...when the universe sends you kind man who thinks you’re wonderful. Who can make your lips smile, and your heart rejoice.
That's about time to open the door of your heart to let love in.
That my first step of finding true love: letting go of the fear of heartbreak. What about you?
If'd love to know: How did you become braver in love? Any advice for someone who's too afraid of heartbreak to love again?
Reply in the comment below!
With love and fearlessness,
*P.S. Did you know I'm writing a book on relationship?
My book "10,000 Miles For Love" will be ready in February for Valentine. I'm so excited about it! Make sure you join readers list to get special updates and a free chapter!