To some, the question of love and lust creates confusion and uncertainty. The concept of love is so abstract that we rarely know how to define it, and therefore allow the emotional feeling of love to be confused with the physical feeling of lust. Understand that when it comes to the physical nature of loving, lust often plays a part. Still, you can know the difference between love and lust if you apply these steps to some introspection about your own relationship.
- Describe the object of your affection. Write a brief description of the person you are interested in. Look at the description. Did you concentrate on the physical such as beauty, eye color and body type? Or did you include character such as funny, nice, sweet, honest or responsible? If the physical is all that attracts you, lust is where your feelings reside.
- Learn about the other person’s life. Talk to him or her and listen. When learning about the person of your interest makes you want to know even more, it may be love. If you find yourself nodding off when the talk turns to his or her interests or family stories, you aren’t in love with the person inside.
- Consider your feelings. When caught up in an active physical relationship, it may be difficult to step back and examine your feelings. When you are apart, your mind may return to your interest often. Ask yourself, are these thoughts just about getting physical or is there more?
- Get physical. Sometimes you just have to get intimate with a person before you know for certain if love or lust is your motivator. Wanting to be with someone after the release of sex is an indicator that you may be leaning toward love.
- Find out what your partner wants and needs. People in love tend to consider what their partner wants or needs before they consider their own wants. Love makes you want to please the person and be a better person so that they will love and respect you in return. Lust is more about satisfying the ache of attraction.
- Imagine being with your partner in ten years. What do you see? Can you form an image or does your mind go blank? If you cannot see a future beyond a quick, physical affair, then lust is ruling your attraction.
Often love includes physical attraction, which causes some to fear that lust is what they are really feeling. However, love is so much more than lust. Look inside yourself to find whether your attraction moves beyond the physical and you will know the difference between love and lust.