The Journey to Real Love

By Dr. Scott & Shannon Peck

A voicemail from a savvy, middle-aged female friend this week brought joy to our hearts. “Hi,” she said, “I finally met a man who is treating me with kindness, respect, and caring. I’ve never experienced this before. I didn’t even think it was possible. I had to tell you because now I understand. This is the love you’ve been teaching me. This is the love I deserve.”

We wish everyone in the universe could experience this love — the love everyone, including you, deserves.

Well, why don’t they? That’s a very good question — and one that drives us nuts here at TheLoveCenter. It drives us nuts because we see so many intelligent, loving, savvy people — men and women — who don’t understand real love.

So many people live as if they are desperate for love and they allow themselves to be treated with apathy, meanness, and even abuse. It hurts our hearts, but we understand. Most people have not awakened to self worth.

Valuing yourself is the beginning of the journey to real love. So if valuing yourself is a step much closer to real love, what does valuing yourself mean? It means your needs are just as important as another’s needs. It means you understand that you deserve to be treated with kindness and respect. Being treated with meanness, inequality, or argument is not love.

Loving yourself means this registers in your heart and mind. It means you are beginning to set higher standards for yourself in love — even if you think that might mean you’ll never meet someone. As we both know from direct, personal experience with unhappy, past marriages, it’s a lot better to be single than unhappily married.

Here’s what happens when you begin to value yourself. You send out signals through your words and actions that you are unwilling to be abused or even treated with disrespect or a lack of genuine compassion. As this taste of real love comes alive within you, some people — those that need to — will fall away from your life. This vacuum may feel painful, but this is part of the journey to real love. A vacuum always creates openings — space for real love.

It’s so easy to say all these words and we see most people nodding in complete agreement. Ah! Success! Well, often times, no. Many people hear the words and intellectually understand them — but then they go right back into a relationship of disrespect, being ignored, uncared for, or even verbal abuse. Yes, this drives us nuts. But we understand.

Life is all about the patterns of our love behaviors. How can we expect to arrive at real love when we have so few examples of real love? This is the real challenge. This is why we wrote the book, “The Love You Deserve” — so people could actually see inside successful, real love.

It’s as if our entire civilization is ever so slowly waking up from a bad love dream. How important is real love as a life priority? For many people, it’s a priority far below making money, pursuing a career, or just having fun — however short-lived that might be.

On top of this, we all observe most marriages tanking. Many young adults have grown up in divorced families where real love wasn’t an example. And treatment of women as equal to men is far from a reality in our present civilization.

All this, however, does not prevent real love. As you wake up to your self worth and set standards for real love that include kindness, respect, compassion, understanding, and equality, your life shifts to a higher dimension of love. Just this internal awakening lifts your love life to higher possibilities. And, if you hold this vibration, despite the civilization and events around you, your heart and life open to real love.

The journey to real love is inevitable for all of us. It’s just a question of waking up to the love you deserve and saying “Yes!” We are with you on the journey. Welcome to the heart of Love!

© Copyright 2008 Scott & Shannon Peck

Dr. Scott Peck & Shannon Peck are Co-founders of TheLoveCenter, a non-profit organization “Calling everyone home to Love” They are authors of books on love & healing, including “The Love You Deserve,” “Love Skills,” “Liberating Your Magnificence,” and “Love Heals” (by Shannon Peck). For lots more love, visit We are holding the space for you to receive all the love you deserve!

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