Love is a beautiful thing when it’s in balance with other parts of our lives. It is meant to add to what is already present. It can inspire some of the beautiful parts of our being. It opens our eyes to possibilities that were unseen. Love only becomes unbalanced when we forget—as in forgetting who we are. We’re all guilty of “forgetting self” in the dating process or in a relationship.

Some of us make the mistake of making our partners our whole life. Our being is entwined into what they need us to be. Even if that means being untrue to ourselves. Our needs get sidelined to accommodate their happiness. We give up things that make us happy as a compromise. We stop hanging out with our friends as much. We avoid going to our favorite sushi place because our partner dislikes it. We even become more conscious of what we wear, and how we interact with others. We only realize how lost we are when it’s all over. At that moment, we’re forced to pick up what is left of who we used to be. We have to maintain who we are single or taken. Who we’re connected to shouldn’t determine who we are. The love you seek ultimately has to come from within.

Being single isn’t a death penalty nor is being in a relationship a trophy. A relationship status doesn’t determine self-worth. I’ve found the best parts of myself in my solitude. It forced me to realize what I wanted. I had to give myself the love that I was looking for. Don’t give up parts of yourself that make you whole. Continue to pursue your goals and stay true to your sense of self. Don’t play small to keep your partner comfortable. Don’t allow your relationship status to OVERSHADOW you. Here are a few tips to maintain your crown while loving another:

  1. Do what makes you happy…ALWAYS!
  2. Don’t forget to date yourself.
  3. Stay connected to your family and friends.
  4. Set boundaries. Put them in place to protect you.
  5. Don’t ignore the red flags or how they make you feel in a situation.