Relationship Expert Tracy McMillan Spreads Self-Love at the Bumble LA Hive

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We’ve all heard the phrase “self-love is the best love”, but what does loving yourself really look like? Tracy McMillan, matchmaker and author of You’re The F***ing One: How Finding the Love of Your Life Depends on Being the Love of Your Life has spent much of her career asking this same question—and now, she’s sharing her secrets with you.

This week, we sat down with Tracy at the Bumble LA Hive to find out how investing in yourself can lead to the healthy, empowered relationship that you’ve always dreamed about. So no matter if you’re happily single or settling into the more serious side of dating, read Tracy’s top tips to learn how your most important love story may be the one you share with yourself.

On The Importance of Self-Love

“Being the love of your life is the most important step in finding the love of your life...One thing I’ve come to learn through all my relationships is that what I was missing was my relationship with myself. Nothing could be more crucial to your relationships — whether that’s with friends, parents or partners — than your relationship with yourself.”

“I needed to look at the things inside of me that were preventing me from getting to the place [I wanted to be]. And that’s the other thing about self-love — it’s you. It’s always you. You have to say to yourself, 'My life is my responsibility.' I’m not saying it’s about blame, I’m saying it’s asking yourself, 'Who is the one who needs to respond to your life situations and your dating situations?' That one is you.”

On Respecting Your Needs

“I have a theory that there are basically two types of men and women: hunters and farmers. Farmers feel calm and chill and safe, whereas hunters are people who are moving around, who we would say have a lot of game, so to speak. In this dating world, you have to decide who you are and what you need. This comes from having a very solid relationship with yourself, so that you can make good decisions for you.”

“When you date from a place of self-love, you’re not on there trying to get anyone to like you, it’s not about that. You’re eliminating people — and I don’t mean that as a 'he’s not tall enough' thing, I mean that as a mentality that comes from knowing what you what to do with your life. Because if we’re trying to impress anyone than you’re going to end up in the wrong relationship and it’s gonna be because you departed from your own path. ”

On Facing Your Fears

“You have to know yourself and know the things you’ve struggled with. One way you do that is you go through all your relationships and identify the core feeling that was going on when you met them. Then look at the outcome of that relationship. If that relationship turned awesome, great, you can trust that. But if it turned out dark, then there’s work to do.”

“The warning signs aren’t outside, they’re [inside yourself]... It’s all about learning to recognize what’s going on within yourself.”

On Moving Beyond the Fairy Tale Romance

“In relationships, you get nine to 18 months of super intense emotions. [But] you have to understand, that intensity is going to die down, and that will either result in the end of a relationship or it will change into long-term attachment. Part of why my relationship history was so crazy was because I wanted that honeymoon feeling all the time. When the feeling would die down, I would start to think that there was something wrong with that relationship.”

“The idea that you’re going to be completely fulfilled in your relationship is kind of an immature idea. You can’t walk through relationships going 'I want, I want'... Happy relationships come from having a connection with something inside of you, having a relationship with yourself that is satisfying, where you love yourself the way you want others to love you. And then you share that fulfillment with your partner. It’s about being a full person who builds and shares, not continuously gets.”  

On Putting Self-Love Into Action

“The first thing about loving yourself is, it’s a practice, not a feeling. And I would say that’s how loving someone else should be as well — a practice. To be self-loving is to look at yourself like Betty White would look at you. It’s an orientation to yourself where you allow yourself to make mistakes and grow.”

“Self-love is about committing to yourself and saying 'I’m going to be there for you.' You stop saying things to yourself that aren’t loving. My inner-self would try to get my attention in life, saying 'Hey, I don’t like this!' I would be tell her, 'Shh, I’m trying to get married.' But once I partnered with her instead of ignoring her — that’s when I started moving forward on an inner level.”  

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