“Love is always revolutionary…It is the only thing worth fighting for, being brave for, risking everything for. And the trouble is, if you don’t risk anything, you risk even more.”

Here is a thought to use as a north star for this new year. It is one that helps me know what side I am fighting for and, whether right or wrong, I am moving further away or closer to a love that can sustain my life. 

Moving towards love is not as simple as it sounds. The reason all the greatest teachers that have ever lived on the planet focused on love as their main message is not because it is easy. We are hardwired to survive, to self defend and self protect and we are mostly inexperienced at opening up to pain. This makes the road to loving often the road less traveled. The more we walk away from it, the more difficult it is to stay on the path the next time.

Forgiveness and humility are basic prerequisites to loving over time. The basic nature of love exists in a willingness to open your heart. Frequently, because we are human, this open heart is hurt. This, sadly is the nature of the imperfect love that we can manage here on earth. As pitiable as this may seem, it is without doubt better than its alternative.

Our hearts are strong, and they grow and become stronger through the act of forgiveness. True forgiveness is the kind that washes you clean, where the letting go is so complete that you can look at the perpetrator of your hurt with no memory of the pain. A truly rare and remarkable experience that makes you believe in love.

So if you’re going to make a resolution this year, as crazy as it may seem, make it for love. Be willing to drop into forgiveness so completely that you won’t recognize yourself when you come up for air. Be brave for love, it will probably hurt, but not nearly as much as walking away.