Why Is It Important To Understand Distinctions Between Loving Someone And Pleasing Someone?
There are 5 photos above. If someone privately took one of those photos and sent it to you with a note, and they were one of the individuals pictured, would you interpret their gift to you to be an act intended to please you or to show love toward you? Neither? Would the photo be self-explanatory? Would it be difficult to determine the sender’s intents?
Do you understand distinctions between loving someone and pleasing someone? Are the definitions forever blurred or changing? Do any two people define the terms in static or similar ways? Why would it be a problem to confuse the two?
How would you define what it means “to please” someone?
How would you define what it means “to love” someone?
Are your definitions identical? Do your definitions overlap?
Could you please someone without loving them?
Could you love someone without pleasing them?
Under my definitions of the two different verbs, ”to please” means I do some action to please another person, with no expectation of receiving anything equally or proportionally pleasing in return.
“To love” means I interact with a specific person with an understanding we will each do work to somehow figure out how to create somewhat equal returns for each other – not necessarily in similar ways, but overall in like kind. In loving someone, the interaction intends to be fair and creates comparable benefits for each other.
These are only my definitions. I encourage anyone else to define them differently according to their own understanding and perceptions.
Under my definitions, it’s possible for one person to please thousands of people. It’s possible for one person to deeply care about and work hard toward the well-being of thousands of people. But it is not possible for one person to have enough time to reciprocate love with thousands of people.
A person can “love” lots of people, in the sense they have affectionate and pleasant feelings toward lots of people. But to really show love another person, a person has to put in time, consideration, and work in equal proportion to what they receive.
Why does this matter?
First . . .
I think sometimes people misconstrue pleasing actions with loving actions. If someone wants to please you, it does not necessarily mean they want to love you. And to avoid heartache, it is good to be able to distinguish whether someone is doing something for you because a) they want to please you or b) they want to love you.
For both men and women, if you incorrectly interpret or accept a kind act done on your behalf as a pleasing gesture, when it was intended to be a loving gesture – you can get yourself in real trouble very fast. And the vice versa is also true.
Second . . .
When you examine your own wants, do you really want to be pleased by someone else in particular, or would you really prefer to be loved by someone in particular?
If you confused the two kinds of things you were looking for, would that likely lead to problems for you?
If you really want love from someone in particular, do you have the time, focus, and commitment to return equal proportion in like kind?
Might you ask less of others if you realize you’re looking more for pleasure rather than love? If you realize you’re only looking to exchange pleasantries, then might that make you less demanding and easier to get along with?
Might you be less disappointed with others if you realize you’re looking to exchange pleasantries rather than looking for fair treatment? Might that lowering of expectations help you avoid unnecessary heartaches?
There’s more to these related discussions, but that’s enough for today
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For regular readers and writers: Well, I made a long stretch of once-a-day posts that was finally ended last night. I didn’t have something sufficiently worthwhile yesterday, so I didn’t waste your time. I do the best I can. But I can’t think up something sufficiently worthwhile as often as I’d like. I keep trying. I do wish to please.