: 12 January 2014

Romantic Relationships Include Both Heaven & Earth

Romantic relationships include experiences of both heaven and earth. That’s to say, we take trips to heaven when we fly into the bliss of unconditional love. And we experience earth when we go about our day-to-day life, managing everything that comes our way, including challenges with our partners.
If we’re being honest with ourselves, most of us would like to skip the whole earth-bound part, and camp-out in heavenly bliss until the end of time. However, living in the daily grind adds an important component to love; it is from this place that we have the opportunity to take strides towards growth.

As humans, we are complex beings. We all have a higher self, which is connected to the realm of spirit. This part of us has an innate capacity for magnificent things. In spirit and soul we feel deeply and profoundly inspired by life and each other.

And we also have an imperfect self, the part of us that is flawed and makes mistakes. This aspect of us is equally beautiful, but in a different way. This is the part that is raw, vulnerable, and scared. The part that experiences grief and anger, and really wants to change for the better but feels it’s limitations in the world.

In life, we vacillate between these two experiences within ourselves. So it makes sense that we vacillate between these experiences in our relationships, too.

When you are in a state of unconditional love (meaning, you don’t have expectations for how another person is), you are connected to a person’s spirit. In your eyes, this person glows. This is what happens when we fall in love.

But as time moves forward and you build a relationship with someone, expectations and conditions do come into the mix. This is normal. The flaws within us always resurface, especially in romantic love.

While, yes, heaven can seem more desirable than earth, it isn’t the full picture of relationships. We are not complete without these two aspects of who we are, therefore neither is our love.

Vibrant, fulfilling love is the kind that moves and mingles back and forth, between heaven and earth. Rather than living solely in one state or the other, we must learn to navigate between the two.

This dance can feel difficult at times, but if we learn to appreciate it as the normal experience of love, then it can become intriguing, and even fun. Instead of seeking a state of perpetual heaven, we can appreciate it when it happens, while simultaneously seeing the beauty in the imperfections that arise in ourselves and each other. This is what real love is made of.

Sometimes we may feel overly inundated with either the feeling of heaven or earth. If this happens, we’re likely to try to equalize by reaching for the opposite state.

For example, does your relationship ever feel heavy or routine? If it does, you are probably desiring more of that heaven feeling. Seek it out by initiating quality time with your partner, to reconnect to each other’s hearts. Doing so will bring the spirit of your relationship back to life.

Are there ever times (most frequently at the beginning) when you feel overly flighty in love, and unable to function in other areas of life? While some of us may not want to make adjustments to this state of being, others may feel a little unhinged by the experience. If that’s the case for you, then perhaps integrating structure and routine into your relationship will help ground you back to earth.

Since earth is the place we tend feel most bound to, we may have to put more effort into seeking out the feelings associated with heaven. We do so by simply connecting with love. Opening our hearts, dropping our expectations, dropping our conditions, being spontaneous, and letting love flow within us. Practicing this lightens our relationships from the inside-out, rejuvenating them with blissful, heavenly feelings.

Keep in mind that good relationships include it all! While, yes, we would love to hang out in heaven most of the time, we actually are living here on earth; we might as well see what lessons it has in store for us, while taking road trips up to that celestial place as much as we possibly can.

Please leave a comment below about your experience of heaven and earth in your relationships. I look forward to hearing from you.



  1. Cassie on January 14, 2014 at 1:37 am

    Thank you Shelly! Your articles are very insightful and fresh! They are vibrant, fresh but also relevant and practical. I think you have addressed an important almost elusive concept here that is spot on! We are all spiritual beings and have an intense drive to operate and functional in that realm, but our humaness brings our feet back to earth with a thud! Reality is stark! But how could we ever enjoy or appreciate the height of sublime ecstasy and glory without knowing the contrast? Thank you for explaining this dual experience so beautifully and bringing a greater clarity and understanding of the dynamics at play in the crazy world of romantic relationship…….you have helped it to make a lot more sense!!

    • Shelly Bullard on January 14, 2014 at 7:09 pm

      Thank you so much Cassandra! Fresh – I love that! Yes – contrast is part of the deal here in this life experience, and it’s actually what allows things to be so beautiful. Thank you for your comment. xo

  2. Regina on January 14, 2014 at 4:27 am

    Thank you Shelley, for reminding me that a relationship is not always ‘heavenly’ where everything will always be going well with no problems. Unfortunately we have to ‘come back down to earth’ and experience difficult, unpleasant things. I love your blogs because you help me to learn how to cope with the hard times in my relationship (and to learn that I must expect some hard times). Please keep blogging and helping me in love.

    • Shelly Bullard on January 14, 2014 at 7:07 pm

      Thank you, Regina. Yes, life and love are both filled with lots of experiences – good and bad. We can develop practices to help us feel those heavenly feelings more often, and that will never be the full story in relationships. I find that accepting that frees me up – helps me appreciate all that is. Thank you for ready and commenting. xo

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