I have this inexplicable desire to help people find love and happiness. That might sound cheesy and not entirely sincere, but it’s true. When I see someone stuck in an unhappy job or struggling in the dating world, all I want to do is help them find solutions (after I properly express my empathy and sympathy). I used to think this was only toward my friends, but then I realize I’m just as easily pulled into the stories and travails of strangers and acquaintances.
The only explanation I can come up with is that I very much believe everyone deserves to be happy and loved. Let me first say that I distinguish “deserve” from “entitle”. Similar to the US constitution, I believe that people have the right to pursue happiness, but that is not the same as right to happiness. The distinction is critical, and is what I mean when I say “deserve” instead of “entitle”.
Both happiness and love (two very much interconnected concepts) take a lot of work and some luck. To achieve either requires both the efforts of the individual and the assistance of others. Before exploring the “how”, I think it’s important to get everyone on board with the possibility of love and happiness. I often get the sense that many people don’t even fully believe they can find happiness and love. I find that both sad and not true.
To the people who think they are stuck, I want to find ways to help them see they can get unstuck. To the people who think their “standards for significant other are too high”, I want to help them realize that that’s not true, though perhaps their framework for love can be tweaked. Ultimately, I want to tell everyone that there is hope, that you can choose happiness and love. It will be hard and it will take a lot of work, but you can get help and you can get there.