Do You Really Have to Love Yourself Before Loving Another Person by Valerie Nifora

February 26, 2020
I am taking part in a WOW! Women on Writing blog tour. This post is written by author Valerie Nifora. More about her poetry collection "I Asked the Wind" at the bottom of this post! Take it away Valerie!

Thousands of years ago, on a temple wall in Ancient Greece in Delphi, the phrase, "know thyself" was inscribed in stone. It served as a reminder to all that it was best to understand oneself completely before embarking on any effort to understand another. The ancient Greeks also had several categories ascribed to the word, "love." It was too complex an emotion, too fundamental to existence, to be allowed to exist as just one word without dissection and analysis. I've always wondered if to truly love another, one had to "know thyself."

The modern definition of love in its basic form, can be summarized as "an intense feeling of deep affection." But, how does one go about feeling deep affection? Is it just a natural occurrence of a healthy psyche? Is it just biochemical? How do you know that you love? I've often struggled with those questions. And adding modifiers in front of the word, just complicated it even more, i.e. "first love", or "true love"... it can be just too overwhelming.

Certainly the world is rife with failed relationships -- those that simply didn't manage the test of time. Did they fail because the parties involved didn't "know themselves"? Any friend will tell you that to enter into a relationship with someone, you need a list of deal breakers -- things you would simply never tolerate of stand for. And then, there's the list of qualities that you feel are fundamental in another person -- things like honesty, trust, kindness, etc. But, how do you come to that list? How do you know these are the things that you require? Is it through a deep analysis of oneself, or maybe the trials and tribulations of relationships gone wrong? Who hasn't uttered the declaration, "I'm never doing that again!" ?

I've found in my own existence, as I age I learn more about myself. The fundamental core of me, is still there -- but self-doubt seems to be subsiding and being replaced with more trust in my first impressions. I've been able to leave space for the unknown, and room so that there's growth. I love the people I love, with the same intensity, I always have. I have learned more about myself with my reactions and responses with these same people. So, do you have to "know thyself" before you can love another? I think to a degree. You have to know the fundamental "you", so that you can share it. And you have to know yourself well enough to leave room for healthy growth and change. But, it certainly is perplexing when you consider it, "Know thyself."

About I Asked the Wind: A Collection of Romantic Poetry

I Asked the Wind: A Collection of Romantic Poetry is a journey into romance, love and loss through poetry. The poems published in this collection span over 15 years of writing. Often starting with short rhythmic patterns, each poem’s lyrical tone is filled with inspired words to express the deep emotion experienced in the intricacies of romance.

Handwritten in a journal and hidden away until this publication, the poems chronicle the journey into and out of love. Written in three parts, the book enables the reader to transverse the intensity of romantic love, from the first moment of falling in love, to the intense pain of heartbreak.

Beautiful and powerful in its lyrical and simple verse, the reader is immediately immersed in a world of sensuality, passion, desire, and innocence; all woven together into a tapestry of human emotion. Each poem transports the reader to a story through the art of poetry. Drawing on natural elements such as the sun, sand, wind and moon, this collection explores the light and darkness of romantic love, leaving the reader questioning if love was ever real at all.

I Asked the Wind: A Collection of Romantic Poetry is available to purchase at, Barnes and Noble, and Target.

About the Author, Valerie Nifora

Valerie Nifora was born and raised in New York to Greek immigrant parents. For over twenty years, Valerie was Marketing Communications Leader for a Fortune 50. She served as a ghost writer for several executives and has executed award-winning campaigns using her special gift as a storyteller to inspire. Her first book is a collection of romantic poetry that explores innocence, sensuality, passion, desire, heartbreak and loss through the lens of her personal experience spanning over 15 years. Her beautiful and powerful voice immediately calls forth a time of leather-bound books and invites the reader to find a comfortable chair and begin their journey through the powerful human emotion of love. Valerie holds a B.A. in Communications from Emerson College and an M.B.A. from Fordham University. She is married and a mother of two amazing sons.

Twitter @vnifora

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