Rule #15: Love That Which Lets You Love It

by Rachel on October 4, 2010

It’s no secret that I get excited about nearly everything. This isn’t entirely true, I suppose, but it is a fact that when I am excited, I’m really excited, and it’s just that I mostly only share the things I can truly gush about (or truly bitch about — really, I guess it all comes down to passion).

Even if you don’t gush like I do, I’m willing to bet you do get excited about certain things, in your own way. And I think a really good rule to live by is to only pursue that which allows you to be excited.

Here’s the thing: it’s easy to make decisions on what excites us, and that’s totally not a bad thing. But when you’re approaching school, career, guys, or, well, life, being excited is simply not enough. I’ve learned this year that really feeling happy and satisfied comes from finding a perfect fit because that excitement is mutual.

If you love your job and are willing to work extra hours and come up with great solutions to problems, but your bosses shoot down your ideas and your co-workers make you feel lame for working so much overtime, then, sorry, but you’re not in the right place. Why would you spend that much time and energy loving something that doesn’t love you back? No one should make you feel guilty for being excited about your job. Love your job? That’s fine! You should be able to own it and not feel lame.

It’s a difficult rule to apply to dating, but when you do, I’m telling you, you will be SO much happier. So often, girls get so excited about guys (we’re delusional, we know) and the guys are just so “Whatever” about it. A good guy (or girl!) will not be “Whatever” about you — that person will be all about you. And, more important, they will let you be excited about them.

This is one of the biggest differences I’ve seen in adult relationships compared to fratastic college ones. If you’re used to guys putting you down for your feelings and making you feel like you’re trying too hard, trust me when I say that that’s not the way it should be. You shouldn’t have to feel like a stalker for wanting to hang out with a guy a lot, because he’ll feel the same way. And if he doesn’t, it’s OK. I’ve been excited about a lot of guys, and I’ve moved on from each and every one who wasn’t excited about me. Life goes on. And I found one who flew me across the country for our first date.

I don’t apologize for much, and I certainly don’t apologize for being excited. And neither should you. And also don’t apologize for peacing the F out on any person, relationship, or situation who makes you feel bad about it.

Yeah, I get a boner for everything that comes my way and I want that thing to be all hot and bothered for me as well. Sorry I’m not sorry.

{ 24 comments… read them below or add one }

1 taryn October 4, 2010 at 3:22 pm

long time reader, first time commenter.

you are the fucking ultimate and i love you. own it.


2 kate October 4, 2010 at 3:26 pm

at first i thought it was a little eager to post and gush about how much i agree with your post immediately after posting but then i went to jezebel and saw that you were quoted:

so there’s that and there’s my original comment of yes, i was so (wanting to be) with someone who didn’t LET me be excited about them. let me?! yikes. and now that i’m (hopefully) about to start to something new it’s ok to be excited about it! because if i’m not excited about than i’m not being me!


3 Jeanine October 4, 2010 at 3:30 pm

LOVE this. Thank you.
Also, long time reader, long time lurker- I am so excited for you that your article on hollaback is getting linked by the “big 6” and you’re hopefully getting some new readers and traffic from it. Even if that isn’t the reason you wrote it, it needed to be said and you’re so amazing in every post that I think regular readers of some of those health blogs would consider you a breath of (hilarious) fresh air.
Not to go all FAN GURLLLLLLLLLL on you, but it’s all I keep thinking about! Thanks for everything you do.


4 Rachel October 4, 2010 at 3:36 pm

Literal LOL at “fan GURLLLLLLLLL” — and THANK YOU! Seriously, I appreciate you coming out of Lurktown and thank you for such a nice comment!!


5 Jasmine @ Eat Move Write October 4, 2010 at 3:35 pm

Very good advice. If a man doesn’t go out of his way for you in the early days, drop that shiz like a hot potato. He needs to be excited to talk to you, see you, and be with you, because over time, men get less enthusiastic. If he doesn’t start out excited, you’ll be very disappointed later.


6 Laura Georgina October 4, 2010 at 3:55 pm

You always manage to post either what I need to hear or how I’m feeling, and today I’m so in love with my world that reading this makes me wanna go YES!, print the rule, and paper my neighborhood with it. It takes a lot of work and a lot of mis-steps to get to where you can love what loves you back… and nothing in this world feels better (okay, some things do, but I’m keeping it PG here!)


7 gretchen October 6, 2010 at 12:49 pm

haha!! paper the neighborhood!!! I pretty much want to post a copy of it in like, every room of my house. at LEAST.


8 Cassie October 4, 2010 at 4:00 pm

It took me three years of trying too hard to learn this. It will definitely help to be able to save this post as a “favorite,” though, and come back and read it when I need the reminder. (Oh wait, isn’t that every lesson/rule here though?!)


9 paz October 4, 2010 at 4:03 pm

I have a boner for this blog post. I’m excited to read your blog, and I feel like your blog is excited for me to read it.


10 Rachel October 4, 2010 at 8:54 pm

It’s true!! It is!!! I love that you said that!


11 Lindsay October 4, 2010 at 5:29 pm

So true! I’m that girl who always spends the first weeks of dating worried that the guy will thing I’m “creepy” for texting him to say hello or wanting to hang out. Now, obviously there are extremes (think restraining-order type of stalker), but otherwise, you shouldn’t be dating someone who is put off by the fact that you like him! And on top of that, if it’s that hard to figure out whether he is or isn’t, that’s not worth it either. I’m glad you put into words what I know I need to remember!


12 Tenecia October 4, 2010 at 5:46 pm

Coming out of Lurkville to say that Paz’s comment is ON POINT!! I literally said, “Right?!?!?” out loud when I read it! :)

*runs back to Lurkville*


13 Rachel October 4, 2010 at 8:54 pm

I literally LOLd at “runs back to Lurkville”!


14 Emma October 4, 2010 at 7:09 pm

“You shouldn’t have to feel like a stalker for wanting to hang out with a guy a lot, because he’ll feel the same way.” This line totally *owns* what I try to say to my friends. Often. When I started dating Adam, we were both SO freakin’ excited about each other…and, actually, still are…it was totally the way it should be! And I’m so glad you’re putting that message out there – “…and I certainly don’t apologize for being excited.” LOVE it. Sorry, I’m not sorry.


15 Annie October 4, 2010 at 9:34 pm

I love that you mentioned how you shouldn’t feel like a stalker for wanting to hanging out with a guy a lot. That’s totally how college (frat…) boys make you feel! This is especially true when you get excited over a guy if you can’t get excited about dating what can you get excited about in college? Your cell bio test on Tuesday? Good to know that adult relationships exist because apparently in college is like the preschool of relationships it’s all about not picking your nose and getting your hands on everything (and one).


16 Caitlin October 4, 2010 at 10:09 pm

I need this today in the very first way. You and Eric are one of VERY few couples that not only gives me hope but reminds me that something absolutely fantastic is out there for me. Thank you.


17 Kara October 5, 2010 at 7:11 am

SWEET JESUS. I really love this. And wish I would have read it as a freshman in college. So many pointless tears & hours agonizing & wasted time with just “eh” guys could have been spared.

I remember calling my now-husband-then-boyfriend shortly after we’d started dating to ask if he wanted to hang out TWO NIGHTS IN A ROW (!?!?!). Oh the agony I put myself through, so worried he’d think I was a spaz-freak who was just “too much.” Turns out, he’s awesome and was just as pumped as I was. Life is way more awesome when enthusiasm is returned, that’s for sure.


18 PoP October 5, 2010 at 8:41 am

Ah Rachel I have a boner for your writing. You are just hilarious! I totally agree on this when it comes to guys. Alot of woman don’t seem to realise that not only is he not that into you…your not into you either! Otherwise you’d be with someone that appreciates you! If someone is not excited about you shouldn’t that instantly dampen your enthusiasm for them? I spent almost five years of my life with guys who weren’t excited about me (unless I was naked!) and when I finally promised myself that was it. I was done. I will not compromise any more. Then I met him. The one that still gives me a glow worm shine 3 years on. And I’m happy to say he glow as well :)

And this weekend when I got excited about finding a pumpkin (okay well I’m living in a country without pumpkins okay!) he listened to me blabber about pumpkins for 30 MINUTES with a grin on his face because he loves me…even when I’m a dork :)

Now that is exciting :)


19 Rachel October 5, 2010 at 8:47 am

Just reading that made me excited! I mean, first, congrats on finding a pumpkin, but more important, congrats on finding a great guy who supports that! And also, I’m just really excited you’re here, reading my blog.


20 PoP October 5, 2010 at 9:44 am

;) it was ridiculously exciting. more exciting then the fact that i was in Germany for sure! :p


21 gretchen October 6, 2010 at 12:50 pm

holy crap, this was JUST what I needed to hear today!!!!!!!!!


22 Christie October 21, 2010 at 1:10 am

I agree with this. You have to be passionate about things in life. What I am passionate about is cooking, pajamas, and my husband. Mostly because he’s not just a Five- he’s off the charts! He also took my last name when we got married. Yeah, sorry I’m not sorry, to quote you. But I’ve got a cool last name and he was a Smith. And guess what? he’s owned it. He forgot that he was ever a Smith. I guess you could say that he is very all about me ;)

love your work. its so very 20-something. and its hard to find that out there


23 Siyam September 11, 2011 at 12:45 am

By reading your posts, you have helped me begin to change my life :) god bless you , Rachel.


24 Xi June 15, 2012 at 4:06 pm

Where have you been all my life? I’ve only just discovered this blog by taking a series of unusual turns on the internet and I’m so happy I found it. Talk about real life wisdom. I am hooked on your blog! Having been pushed around emotionally by so many guys and lost my self confidence, I have taken the past year to regain it and I can finally say F it. I am done. I will not take any more crap from anyone. If I choose to give you my affections/love/attention and you choose to ignore it/abuse it/make use of it, I can and will withdraw it immediately and not feel sorry for you. I deserve more than that.
Rachel, thank you for putting onto pen and paper (sort of) what my brain has been screaming at me for the past couple of months. It feels good to find a kindred spirit!


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