An excerpt from my book Heart on My Fingers. To be released – 4.26.16
Never fall for potential!
Potential – having or showing the capacity to become or develop into something in the future.
The scary thing about potential is that it doesn’t exist. It’s unreal. When you base feelings or make commitments or start relationships based off of potential, you are doing all of these things with emphasis on something that isn’t real.
When you fall for the potential in a person or a relationship… you’re falling for a façade. Someone who isn’t real. A fake. When this person doesn’t become who you thought they could, or the relationship doesn’t serve the purpose you thought it would, you end up disappointed because you expected something that wasn’t real or even guaranteed.
With Honey, I fell for the potential of who he could be to me based off of who he was with her. When we met and were friends I was able to see who he really was by how he interacted with her. He wasn’t telling me what he thought I wanted to hear, or lying about who he really was. I got a clear picture of his character just by watching him interact with her and her kids.
I fell in love with who I saw.
I fell in love with the man that he was when he was with her.
But, he wasn’t the man for me.
So, when he pursued me, I thought he was going to be that man with me, but he wasn’t. When I didn’t get that person, I was disappointed. I expected him to be who he was with her with me; and because I didn’t allow him to show me who he was going to be with me I saw who I wanted him to be.
The entire time I was with him, I was waiting for him to be that man and fulfill that potential… but he never did. It was my natural human nature to make him feel bad about himself because he wasn’t who I thought he was, when the truth of the matter was it was my fault because I fell for potential of him and expected things that I shouldn’t have.
Potential is dangerous because it doesn’t matter how great you think a person can be in your life, you end up dating the real and true person that they are. The best way to avoid falling for potential is by not over thinking or rush thinking a relationship or person. Give them time to show you what they’re willing to offer you. Yes, people are always talking about releasing the potential of something, and that’s fine when it’s you. You have power over yourself. You can choose to bring something into fruition with your life; but you don’t have that same power over someone else.
You can’t force them to love you. To give you what you need. What you want. That’s a choice that they have to make on their own.
And don’t give yourself to someone who loves the potential or idea of you. Someone who loves you with their mind is not as committed to you as someone who loves you with their heart or soul. When someone loves the idea of you, they can do without you. They can go all day without talking to you. They can miss you, but make no effort to be with you. They can desire you, but have no intentions of pursuing you or doing what it takes to keep you. Just because someone desires you doesn’t mean they value you. Remember that.
I’m going to leave you with a quote that helped me greatly when I was getting over the disappointment of falling for potential. It’s from Elizabeth Gilbert and Eat, Pray, Love.
“I have a tendency not only to see the best in everyone, but to assume that everyone is emotionally capable of reaching his highest potential. I have fallen in love more times than I care to count with the highest potential of a man, rather than with the man himself, and I have hung on to the relationship for a long time (sometimes far too long) waiting for the man to ascend to his own greatness. Many times in romance I have been a victim of my own optimism.”