Everyone, especially those who say, “F*** love,” wants to be loved by somebody. No one, not even the most evil, vile and terrible human beings, sets out to be hated. Love is the universal language of the human race. It transcends all boundaries and keeps plenty of people in situations they should not remain in.

Despite this reality, its powers are enormous. Since we all can agree—because we can honestly—that everyone wants to be loved in some way, we must understand that in order to attract the love you desire, you must grant your heart permission to do so. Here’s how:

1. Understand that pain as a result of heartbreak does not have to define you. We often rely on memories of past heartache to “protect” us, but it actually does the opposite. Though I do recommend cherishing your heart and protecting it by relying on your intuition, attempting to love and be loved with a fortress around it is never productive. No one should have to pay for the sins of another, but that’s exactly what happens when you are unwilling to let go of past pain.

2. Grant your heart permission to try, fail and try again. Love is not a race. Some find it easier than others, but in no way does that mean they’re more deserving. Once you’ve determined that you are deserving of pure, genuine, timeless love, you have to then grant yourself permission. Take a moment to tap into your heart and verbally allow yourself to feel again …whatever that may be. You don’t find a dream job by becoming discouraged after being denied a few. The same thing goes for love. Every relationship that didn’t work out gets you closer to the man or woman who you are supposed to be with.

3. Believe in your worth. This final tip is the most important one: You cannot attract (or keep) anyone of substance without knowing that you are worthy and what you bring to the table. Understand that you must teach someone how to perceive you, and that comes from having a healthy, loving, positive relationship with yourself. The journey of finding love doesn’t have to be a depressing one. If you choose to grant yourself permission to allow someone to love you like you deserve, you’ll find that life is more wonderful when you have someone to share it with. You just have to choose to do so.