Some people are born romantics, always letting their hearts lead them. Others are more logical, maybe even cynical, trusting their heads and disregarding their hearts. But most of us have a bit of a war going on inside – a neverending battle between what we feel and what we think.
Consider this scenario: you’re out on the town with friends, but the last thing on your mind is romance. Your previous relationship ended badly and you’re not ready to be “out there” just yet. All you want is a cold beer and some good conversation with your buddies.
And then it happens. You gaze across the crowded bar and lock eyes with a perfect stranger. In that one moment, you somehow know everything you’ll ever need to know about this person. You make your way over and begin to chat. It’s magic. Your heart tells you this is the love you’ve been waiting for your whole life.
“But wait a minute!” screams your head. You don’t even know this person. The “love of your life” is probably a liar, a thief, or a serial killer – or married! Your head knows there’s no way this is going to work out. Even if you manage to escape being murdered in your sleep, you can’t avoid the million other terrible things that will ruin the relationship. You just can’t trust your heart in situations like this. Your head knows better. People who believe in love at first sight are romantic fools… right?
It’s the classic example of the constant battle between head and heart. You want to believe that life can change in one magical moment, with one single glance. But you know it’s impossible to love a complete stranger. So what wins out, your heart or your head? Which should you trust, what you feel or what you know?
To a certain extent, your head is right. You don’t know who this person really is. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take the time to find out. Whether it was fate, a higher power, or just good old-fashioned sexual chemistry, something drew you to each other. And you owe it to yourself to follow where your heart leads. Yet you still have to pay attention to your head. No matter how enchanting your first encounter was, you’ll eventually have to face the reality of the relationship.
All in your head
The head versus heart battle isn’t necessarily a bad thing; the trouble comes when one side consistently dominates. You stay in a relationship that’s comfortable but not passionate. Or maybe you propose to her because it seems to be the right thing to do. Or you convince yourself he’s your one true soul mate, even though he’s kind of a jerk.
Say your partner treats you with love but can’t always articulate the words. If you only trust your head, you just might overanalyze yourself out of someone whose actions speak louder than words. And what if your partner says all the right things but doesn’t really follow through with actions? If you only trust your heart, you’ll have to hope that those words actually mean something when you’re spending yet another night alone.
Either way, you’ve settled for less than a happy, healthy relationship. There’s a good reason you’re born with a heart and a head: you need them both! Your heart forces you to take chances. Your head slows things down; it reminds you of the pain those risks can cause.
Your head can anticipate hurt your heart would never suspect. Your heart can hope for beauty your head could never even imagine. The trick is to listen to both. Your heart can be dangerously naÔve and your head dangerously cynical. You’ve got to balance what makes sense with what feels right.
And when you meet that special person, your head and your heart will finally come together. Your head will tell your heart to be careful… but your heart will insist that it’s worth the risk.
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