A New Way to Look at Love


This is not your typical book on love or relationships hence the bold title. Barbara Frederickson wants to define love \”as the body knows it, not society.” She offers this paradigm shift in the way you see love to hopefully make your relationships stronger. I think it\’s definitely worth checking out my notes and a skim through if it\’s at your local library or bookstore. 

Love ≠ intimate relationship, soul-mate or spouse

Love ≡ our supreme emotion, essential nutrient our cells crave, positivity charged connection with other living beings.

The more you experience love the more you open up and grow, become wiser and more attuned, more resilient and effective, happier and healthier

Love is not lasting, exclusive or unconditional.

Love obeys preconditions, once you understand those, find love countless times a day, love is forever renewable

Far beyond feeling good, a micro-moment of love literally changes your mind. It expands your awareness of your surroundings, even your sense of self. The boundaries between you and not-you— what lies beyond your skin— relax and become more permeable.

Love is not just confined to one person, it belongs to pairs or groups of people. It resides within connections.

Love is the momentary upwelling of three tightly interwoven events: first, a sharing of one or more positive emotions between you and another; second, a synchrony between your and the other person’s biochemistry and behaviors; and third, a reflected motive to invest in each other\’s well-being that brings mutual care.

Frederickson calls this trio of events, positivity resonance, which can be likened to a mirror between people, mirroring each other\’s positivity, mirroring each other\’s gestures and biochemistry, mirroring each other\’s impulse to care for one another.

Positivity resonance(love) preconditions

      • Safety
      • Physical connection-especially eye contact

Three biological players in love

      • Brain
      • Oxytocin: \”cuddle hormone\”
      • Vagus Nerve: connects brain and heart, soothes racing heart from flight or flight response, through \”calm and connect” response

Chronic feelings of loneliness can weaken people\’s immune systems and open the door to inflammation-based chronic illnesses, like cardiovascular disease and arthritis. Data also suggests that feeling isolated does more bodily damage than actual isolation. In countless social interactions a day, your potential to alleviate loneliness with love is enormous.

Your body acts as a verb. Some aspects of your body remain relatively constant like DNA and eye color, but your brain continually registers your ever-changing circumstances and in turn orchestrates the flux of biochemicals that reshape your body and brain from the inside out, at the cellular level.

\”You are made in the image of what you desire\”- Thomas Merton 

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