The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a story about an introverted people-pleaser trying to make his way through high school.
The protagonist, Charlie, befriends his teacher, Mr. Anderson. At one point Charlie asks him, “Why do nice people choose the wrong people to date?” Mr. Anderson responds, “We accept the love we think we deserve.”
That quote goes beyond dating.
When we feel inauthentic, we feel alienated and unworthy. We accept the minimal love we think we deserve and attract cycles of circumstances that reflect our feelings of deficiency. We think our problems will be solved by gaining more love from the outside, but the fundamental problem lies in our programming.
How do we gain more love isn’t the question. It’s how do we let more of it in.