The 75-year Harvard Grant study –one of the most comprehensive longitudinal studies ever conducted — followed 268 male Harvard undergraduates from the classes of 1938-1940 (now well into their 90s) for 75 years, regularly collecting data on various aspects of their lives. The universal conclusion? Love really is all that matters, at least when it comes to determining long-term happiness and life satisfaction.
The study’s longtime director, psychiatrist George Vaillant, told The Huffington Post that there are two pillars of happiness: “One is love. The other is finding a way of coping with life that does not push love away.” For example, one participant began the study with the lowest rating for future stability of all the subjects and he had previously attempted suicide. But at the end of his life, he was one of the happiest. Why? As Vaillant explains, “He spent his life searching for love.”
So, the one thing you need is Love eh? what the heck is love anyway is the top and bottom line of this whole blog. I’ve thought about this question in the past before actually. (I guess I have to, otherwise this blog would be rubbish – though I guess i’d still write it but wouldn’t know where to start and so I’d end up not writing and so..well whatever. I’ve thought about it in the past is the point of this thought process.)
I’ve thought about this question. How to define Love. If I was bothered right now I’d go open the Collins dictionary I have and look it up. instead, to be a little bit bothered and give some substance to this blog, I’ll google define it:
oh wouaw. pretty rubbish definition if you ask me. “a strong feeling of affection” and “a great interest or pleasure in something”. This is not what I expected. Let’s check out the other links.
oh, it seems those above definition were the Oxford definitions…
I don’t totally disagree or hate those definitions but they are so…. lacking…
and it seems, this definition does need to be revised. From the above article, it seems we pretty much RUN on love.
The way I’ve thought about Love is that it’s a mixture of everything, that could take a very long time to describe/convey/explain and so to summarize it we use the word “love”.
Loving someone is caring for them, wanting them to be happy, wanting to see them smile, is thinking about them randomly because you value them so much, when you see a Gazebo for example, you smile a little because you know that person likes Gazebos.
I could go on describing Love… but then there’s something that happens. Love has levels. or maybe that thought should be “love has types” or smoething like that. because I know that I do not love the many people in my life the same way. I can’t think of two people I love the same way. How could I?! I don’t have two friends who care about Gazebos the same, and even if I did, their reasons for loving Gazebos would be different, and so their love for it would definitely be different.
So yes, for every person, I believe you’ll have a different definition of love for them.
Love is about having a give and take relationship. Recently I went on a walk with a friend, a long random walk, with no objective. Or as we decided, in search of a destination – something worthy of saying “this is where we wanted to be all along”. (in the end this didn’t actually matter but that’s for another blog I think) so anyway, when one walks randomly with no particular aim with someone else (actually, have you ever done that? You should try it.) then the only thing that guides us is our personal preferences and inclinations towards whatever is in this particular environment. So as we walked, I thought we would go straight but then my friend saw something interesting to the right, so, with a shrug, we went to the right. throughout this walk I learnt quite a bit. the above being one of those things. Love means I am willing to give in to some things, to let things go a certain way, the way this person I love (urgh.cringe.sorry) wants to go.
through some daydream/pondering I realised that love could also be when this person’s happiness becomes yours. I’m not saying that you’re total happiness depends on theirs (or am I?) What i’m saying is that when it comes to a choice between A and B, sometimes your choice will be “whichever this person wants/whichever makes this person happy”. That’s a strange feeling to have.
There are many other reasons – which can be feelings, actions, or anything else – that lead to something called “love”. Lead is the wrong word here. It’s not a case of “I am so grateful this gratitude has now turned into love”. It’s more of “I am so grateful, so thankful, you have made me happy, this is Love.” all these feelings, somehow, it can all be bundled under “love”.
That’s why I think, sometimes, every once in a while, it could be a good idea to just give the long definition of your “I love you” to whichever person, just so they know, just so the word gets its meaning renewed, but above all…just so that YOU can remember.
I’m only young, I’ve only experienced a few “types” of love but every experience makes me who I am, shapes my way of thinking, sets my cogs in motion, my fingers atyping, my brain awhirring and thus…I am.