The ultimate goal
The ultimate goal to be, to do, to reach and how... is always love. To feel loved and to be able to love. And to do things with love. (But what is then love? You can read my definition in the book "The Call for Divine Mothering").
In order to be able to both be loving and to feel loved, it's, I think, our born with quality. If you think about it, a new-born must be coy in order to be fed and this is the foundation for most things and relationships in life. The problems arise when try to be other things than love or when we want to reach other goals than being love, or simply think we can reach it by assuming different roles in our relationships. We start bargaining as if our payment is love.
What do you need in order to feel loved?
What do you need in order to love?
It does take an effort, to make a choice to be, and carry this out. Compassion is often the way to. But, if you feel like you don't have what you need, or can't find this feeling of love within, there are shortcuts, such as tending to an animal, but also finding the original source of your pain. Who hurt you the most, when, how, and why? Did he or she not feel loved either? Then practice forgiveness.
For more on how to journey into love, read more here.