10/24/2012 04:55 pm ET Updated Dec 24, 2012

Love Yourself Before You Love Others

Endless summers eventually end. The icy lick of a seasonal turn spreads a nostalgic grip across flesh exposed, waves of goosebump glow, and with it a flood of misplaced memories. Of layered clothing, falling leaves. Of Halloween streets, cold raindrops on umbrellas. Of autumnal sunsets sent early to bed.

Of her. And her. Oh, and of course... of her.

For as long as I can remember, I have loved love. The past two decades rapt either in hot pursuit of dynamically talented women or basking in their resplendent magnificence. Until, you know, things didn't work out.

Shift happens.

There is an art to the yoga of love, to finally look past finding "the one," toward loving one's self. Instead of spending all your effort on building a crystal pedestal for someone else, why not take the time to enjoy the view for yourself? There are wonderful people aplenty out there who could be easily be the one with whom you share the wealth. Do you plan on making them happy, despite being unable to fully smile when alone?

You have got to love your self before you love others.

Best intentions aside, one starts down the road to hell after taking a wrong turn without realizing it. This is not the end of the world, just the beginning of the end. Force is required to actually reach that final destination. Power is needed to turn everything around. A mind in love has the strength of a thousand warriors, easily forcing a softened heart's hand. The mind, however, holds no power over the reactions of one's gut.

Trust the gut. After all, we all know what the best way to a man's heart is.

The heart is a muscle much like an armored tank is a mode of transportation. No common muscle can take such damage and ever hope to work, yet the heart keeps chugging along. Human nature of those in possession of one, be it their own or someone else's, dictates that we must test its limits and capacities. Either you've been there, you've seen it happen, or you're about to get served. Remember to stay centered. Balance is just a midpoint between two extremes, and clearly, a balanced lover should know one extreme in order to understand the other.

Or so it goes. Just because one is especially good at healing, does not the original injury negate. Balance between extremes still means your center is tethered to excess. There is a difference between survival and thriving. Just because your heart survived the war does not mean it escaped unscathed. If something hurts, fix it instead of covering it up.

The mind responds. The gut reacts. The heart follows. Learn the subtle differences by staying true to the self. Stay diligently committed to ensuring your own happiness in order to fully serve the ones you love. If a relationship is truly meant to be, courageously voice any unsure feelings with compassion. Otherwise, they are sure to come back and devour you alive. Nothing is more voracious than a black hole inside, gnawing at your tethered heart's strings.

Patterns emerge. Habits form. Expectations are set. The opportunity to see past these challenges needs to be realized. Now is the time to embrace trust with courageous fearlessness, from the inside out, from the outside in. Your heart was caught in the collateral damage of explosive results where an unrealized wrong turn was blindsided by best intention. Your mind and gut collided. This happens all the goddamn time. Trees shed their leaves, only to grow a whole set anew when the time is right. Seasons change, and with them, so do we.

For more by Daniel Scott, click here.

For more on love, click here.