Ink Tone Swep Images Andrea Macias-Jimenez Location West Los Angeles, CA
What is the earliest time you can recall, as a young girl, offering advice and direction to others.
By the time I was in middle school, my friends would commonly ask for my advice on how to handle a situation. I think this had to do with the fact that I was always good at looking at a situation from multiple perspectives.
Share a personal life challenge with us, one related in some sense to your chosen career path. What were you faced with, how did you overcome it, and how did the experience assist in preparing you for your current role?
My own struggles in my romantic life (Laughs!). I would not be compelled to help others create healthy relationships had I not understood the pain that could result from having unhealthy relationships. I have always been fascinated by human behavior and the human psyche, so it was second-nature to me to research why I kept having the same painful experiences in my romantic relationships. I found that the key to breaking this pattern was developing a better relationship with myself, first.
Love Notes by M is a very spirited endeavor, essentially a love and relationships startup. What initially compelled you to launch a relationship-coaching company?
My own life and experiences taught me that the relationship you hold with yourself is the single most important relationship, and one that you will have for the rest of your life. This relationship essentially dictates how well you function in all other relationships in your life… I also believe the quality of relationships in all forms reflect the quality of life you live. Once I started to improve the relationship I had with myself, my life improved tremendously in all areas, not just in my romantic life.
When did your purpose find you?
I’ve known for quite awhile that my purpose is to help heal others and what better way to do that than how I learned to heal myself?
An important part of your agenda is self-love, which lends itself in topic to self-awareness and self-actualization. Why is accomplishing this first so vital to the relationship’s long-term success?
It is the root and foundation, and as we know, we cannot build on a weak foundation. In order to create a healthy, long-lasting relationship, both individuals have to show up in that relationship as their most authentic and whole self. The only way to show up this way is to know and fully accept who you are. If we aren’t fully accepting and loving of ourselves, we are always looking for an external source to fulfill us and at the end of the day, those external sources are all temporary. The only shot we have at creating a healthy long-term relationship is cultivating that love and security in our own lives before we try and create that with someone else.
Any instructive professional is challenged at points by their clients, whether a personal trainer, tax advisor, professor or, in this instance, relationship coach. How do you respond to that healthy resistance?
I believe that I am always a student. Even though I have a wealth of information I can share with my clients, my clients teach me all the time. I view these challenges as opportunities towards my own growth, as both a relationship coach and an ever-evolving human being.
Can you talk a bit about some of your client’s most common relationship dilemmas? What are most couples facing?
I primarily work with singles who are looking to change that relationship status, but can’t seem to figure out what is standing in their way. It is often a pattern of behavior that is being repeated that the client has not yet gained enough insight on. As far as couples, I would say most relationship issues boil down to a lack of effective communication and trust.
The U.S. divorce rate fluctuates between 40-50%, yet there are numerous singles sites, dating clubs, and mobile apps designed to connect people. Why has maintaining a loving relationship proven so challenging?
My first comment would be that marriage is not synonymous with a loving relationship. There are plenty of marriages that last, despite generally discontent partners and loving long-term relationships between couples that never make it down the aisle… However, if we were to use marriage and divorce as a marker of relationship success, it is because in today’s world, people no longer have to get married or stay married. We are living in a very different world than our parents and grandparents, where the consequences of divorce are much less severe. The reason for getting married has shifted from one of necessity to one of desire, which I personally find inspiring.
As humans, we need air, water, sustenance, and rest to survive in this world. What are the four core, sort of foundational necessities, needed for any relationship to even have a chance of similarly surviving?
1. Self-love, within both partners. 2. Acceptance of self and partner. 3. Trust. 4. Effective communication.
In regards to your continued growth and progress, what can we expect from you and Love Notes by M in the not so distant future?
Although I have many ideas, one that I am currently working on is compiling my relationship-centered inspirational quotes into a coffee-table book.
Finally, let’s talk cause and effect. The latter is supposed to supersede the former; the beginning simply a means to its end. However, is it possible the cause is potentially greater than the effect? If so, how so?
In terms of cause and effect, there is no effect without cause and every cause has an effect, so essentially one cannot exist without the other and therefore, in my opinion, a hierarchy cannot be created. They are reliant on each other, whether they know and accept it or not. 💜