Recently I sitting in a restaurant, at a table directly across from a young couple. They were holding hands and staring into each other’s eyes. With their arms outstretched across the crisp, white linen tablecloth, it was obvious that they were both trying to reach each other.
From where I was sitting, it appeared they were slightly uncomfortable– sitting across from each other and holding hands while seated at a table easily designed for a party of four. Yet the young couple never showed any signs of discomfort; quite the opposite, as a matter-of-fact. They looked happy and in love.
The restaurant was very nice, with great food and impeccable service. The servers were seated not far from the dining room tables and looked like sprinters waiting for the starting gun. The restaurant’s waitstaff was eager to make everyone’s night memorable, including that of the young couple.
A half-empty bottle sat on their table like a lighthouse towering over a basket filled with freshly-baked bread. The couple’s wine glasses were filled with an expensive red wine and soon the appetizers arrived and were placed on the table in front of them. The combination of romantic music playing in the background, the smell of fresh baked bread and candlelight on each table was causing the young couple to fall even more in love with each other.
At that point, I asked myself, “Is this love? Is this what real love looks like?” Apparently so. However, I believe it’s easy to fall in love under these circumstances.
I’m quite sure that if I was at that restaurant, seated at that table and under those romantic circumstances with a goat, even I could fall in love, no disrespect to goats. But on a serious note, is this the true love everyone is looking for or is it just a product of our environment?
What if these people were on their first, second, or third date – soaking wet in the middle of a forest and trying to start a fire to cook a meal to feed themselves? Add to that scenario the fact that one of them had no cooking or survival skills whatsoever, and couldn’t be of any help to the other. Would they still be staring into each other’s eyes the same way?
This leads me to my next question. Do we fall in love with each other, or do we fall in love with our environment? If the latter, then we run into a whole different set of problems as there are a million different sets of circumstances and a million different levels of comfort and discomfort. In this same way, there are also a million different types and levels of love, which makes it very hard to find true love – that one love that’s just right for you.
I believe that to find true love, couples must experience a series of circumstances and different environments, starting with the comfortable and moving toward the highly-uncomfortable, if they want to succeed. True love and red wine is just a fantasy. We need to go low before we can aim high. Couples must work through the hard times together, so they can come out of them stronger together. Only that is true when each can say to the other, “I truly love you.”
It’s easy to love someone when they are sitting at the dinner table and drinking a glass of champagne; however, change the circumstances and the event – make them uncomfortable, and perhaps their love for each other will also change. Does this mean that they didn’t love each other in the first place? No, not at all. They “loved” each other at that dinner table. But it’s also likely that one of the partners, when introduced into a new and uncomfortable environment, isn’t compatible with the other partner – different environments, different feelings.
“I love you” can also be interpreted to mean “I love sitting at a nice restaurant while drinking a fancy glass of red wine with you, but when that changes, my love for you may also change.” Because of that, couples often struggle to maintain a certain environment to keep their partners happy, interested and in love.
So, what is love? Does love lure you with nice restaurants, red wine, good service, friendly goats and pretty vows? It could, depending on the circumstances and the environment; however, if you really want to find true love, don’t make it so comfortable. Stay away from fancy first dates, flowery language, red wine and rose petals. Ask uncomfortable questions. Tell some truths about yourself, and lastly… make your partner pay for their own meal.
Good luck finding true love.
Leo Frincu is a world wrestling champion, author, speaker and performance coach for business leaders and athletes worldwide. To learn more about his training philosophy, check out his latest book, “WELCOME HOME, 3 Simple Steps On How To Reach Your Highest Potential,” available on Amazon and iBooks.