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How To Stop Being In Love With The Idea Of Love: 6 Highly Effective Tips

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Love is something most of us want to experience in life.

We want to be in love with someone and have them be in love with us.

But what happens when the thing you are in love with is the idea of love itself?

What if you put that feeling at the very pinnacle of existence as some nirvana to find and keep hold of?

Well, it can be problematic in several ways.

This article will explore those drawbacks before providing some advice on how to stop being so focused on this one feeling.

Speak to a certified relationship counselor about this issue. Why? Because they have the training and experience to help you form a more realistic idea of love. You may want to try speaking to someone via RelationshipHero.com for practical advice that is tailored to your exact circumstances.

6 Drawbacks To Being In Love With The Idea Of Love

1. You get easily disappointed by relationships.

In your mind, love is this wondrous thing that makes the whole world a brighter and happier place to be.

And whilst there is no denying that being in love feels good, that early rush of heart-pounding emotion doesn’t last forever.

What you are in love with is ‘falling’ in love. You want the butterflies, the hot flushes of excitement, the irresistible force that pulls you toward another person and makes you want to be with them all the time.

But when the honeymoon phase is over and you’re settling into a committed relationship, that intense feeling starts to mellow and you can’t help but feel a little bit disappointed by the relationship.

2. You struggle with the realities of a relationship.

You believe love is the way it is made out to be in fairytales.

And to a certain extent, you are right. The emotional side to love is the easy bit. After all, that feeling is very pleasant.

But love as a feeling has to coexist with the cold, hard realities of what relationships are like.

Because relationships are hard. Perhaps not all the time, but they will be challenging at some point. More than one point, in fact.

And when the highs of love clash with the low times in a relationship, you feel somehow cheated of your fantasy vision.

Your idea of love is not what you see in front of you and that fuels the disappointment mentioned above.

3. You are too willing to change in order to make a relationship work.

It’s commendable to want to make a relationship work. And, yes, that will mean some compromise and sacrifice for both parties.

But because you are so obsessed with the notion of true love, you bend too far to make it seem like that’s what you’ve got in a relationship.

You want that love so badly that you are willing not only to compromise all of the time, but to go so far as making unhealthy sacrifices in the belief that it will keep the intense fire burning longer.

The problem is, the more you try to force that love by changing for it, the more you begin to realize that your relationship doesn’t match the idea of love you have in your mind.

Again, this creates those feelings of disappointment mentioned earlier.

4. You overlook red flags.

When you are dating someone, or during the early stages of a relationship, you will normally get a feel for whether the other person (and the relationship) is right for you.

But because you are so engrossed in the idea of finding true love, you make a habit of overlooking the signs that something isn’t quite right.

It might be incompatibility issues that aren’t things you can overcome if you want to have a happy, healthy, and harmonious relationship.

But it can also leave you susceptible to toxic and manipulative people who will give you what you want at first by making it seem like there is this intense chemistry between you.

This tactic – often used by narcissists – is called love bombing. It is where a person proclaims their love and affection for you and makes grand gestures of those feelings to lure you in.

And because you are so enamored with the notion of love, you fall for their fakeness, believing it to be the real thing.

Only, when the mask slips and reveals their true self, you are in deep with them and find it difficult to escape.

5. You look for love where there is none.

You want to be in love so much that you sometimes imagine it exists when it doesn’t.

You convince yourself that you’re in love even when that feeling isn’t quite there or isn’t quite right.

Or you confuse other feelings for love.

That could be the lust and physical attraction you feel when you first meet and date someone.

Or it could be that you mistake the kind of love you feel for a friend as the love you want from a partner. You might think you want a relationship with a friend when all you actually want is to spend more time with them and have more fun.

It might even be the case that you are projecting the love you feel for the idea of love onto a person, and believing that you must truly love this person. All you are really trying to do is force this person to fit the love you feel.

6. You never feel content when single.

You are so captivated with the idea of being in love that you long to feel it as often as possible.

This means the single life is not one you easily find yourself happy in. You want to be in a relationship all the time and are more likely to be a serial monogamist.

But as was touched upon earlier, you aren’t always that happy in a relationship either because the reality never lives up to your expectations.

How To Stop Being In Love With The Idea Of Love

1. Work on your self-esteem and self-worth.

Perhaps the biggest reason a person might love the idea of being in love is because they believe that when you are in that state, your other worries disappear.

It might never quite happen that way in real life, of course, but it does in your head.

You equate ‘being in love’ with ‘being loved’ when they are two very different things.

You can be loved (and almost certainly are loved) by lots of people whom you don’t have to ‘be in love’ with.

But you might not be able to see this if you have issues of low self-esteem and low self-worth.

To you, the love of friends or family doesn’t have quite the same level of commitment as choosing one and only one person to have a romantic relationship with.

And so you feel you need to be in love in order to feel worthy of having someone choose to love you.

By working to improve your self-esteem and self-worth, you realize that you are liked and loved by many people already. And you learn to like and love yourself.

Suddenly, the idea of being in love isn’t such a cure-all solution to the insecurities and anxieties you feel when single.

You no longer need to be in a relationship to be happy with who you are.

What’s more, a relationship will be healthier when you aren’t trying to use it to silence the negative thoughts and feelings you have about yourself.

In effect, knowing that you are worthy of love makes being in love and staying in love easier. 

2. Don’t confuse romance or passion for love.

Your fairytale vision of love may have formed from watching too many Disney movies of princes and princesses and the way that birds sing when two people find each other and fall for one another.

It’s a story of romance and passion and grand gestures.

But real love isn’t like that.

Yes, relationships may, and probably should, include romance and passion to varying degrees from time to time. But, in the long run, love is more of an underlying feeling of commitment toward another person even when everyday life takes over.

Knowing this prepares you for the weakening of the initial rush you feel. It lessens your disappointment at the passing of this phase.

You’ll be more content and comfortable as a relationship develops over time and your lives settle down into a rhythm together.

3. Set realistic expectations of a relationship.

No relationship is perfect. Even partners who are the best of friends will push each other’s buttons every now and again.

Most relationships will be less than perfect in some ways. Conflict is inevitable.

But in knowing that, you won’t put so much pressure on the relationship to live up to the notion of love you have in your head.

You won’t get so disappointed when you have your first fight or when your partner does something that annoys you.

Your expectations will better reflect the realities of what love really means in the context of a relationship.

4. But be honest about a relationship.

There is a difference between accepting that no relationship can ever be perfect and accepting a relationship that is unhealthy or unhappy.

Understanding this distinction is key so that you do not compromise or sacrifice too much in the mistaken belief that you are in love with someone.

You can’t force love just because you are desperate to be in love.

At the same time, just because you are in love with someone, doesn’t mean you have to remain in a relationship with them if it is not good for you. You can love someone from afar if you have to for whatever reason.

5. Think about what you can bring to the relationship.

Being in love with the idea of love can cause you to look at a relationship in terms of what it can give you – i.e. those very feelings of love.

But you also have to bring something to a relationship. This goes for both partners, of course, but in your case it means understanding that love is not the only thing that goes in to making a relationship work, nor the only thing you get out.

This doesn’t mean putting yourself or your wishes second and always bending to the will of the other person. You simply have to be willing to bring patience, understanding, and compassion among other things.

Don’t make the love you want to feel the entire basis of a successful relationship. There’s a lot more to it than that.

6. Take things slowly.

When you are so fixated on the idea of being in love with someone, you may rush into forming a relationship with them in the hope that this hastens your feelings of love.

But forcing a relationship forward faster than feels natural is unlikely to end well.

So do yourself and your relationship a favor and take things slowly. Allow your feelings to develop over time and really consider what you are feeling and why.

Don’t just assume that because you feel attracted to this other person that it’s love or that love will follow. Give yourself time.

Still not sure how to stop being in love with the idea of love? Listen, wanting to find love is a good thing and you don’t need to give up that quest, but having a healthier understanding of love will help you in that. That’s where consulting a relationship expert can be really useful. So why not chat online to one of the experts from Relationship Hero who can help you change the way you think about love.

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About The Author

Steve Phillips-Waller is the founder and editor of A Conscious Rethink. He has written extensively on the topics of life, relationships, and mental health for more than 8 years.