Being ambitious doesn’t mean you can’t love in J. Sterling’s “Heartless”

USA Today Bestselling Author, J. Sterling is famous for her passionate Romance and Contemporary novels. Stories with main characters who fight for each other; with plots that leave you unable to put the book down; and enchanting themes that captivate you. She shows us the best parts of love, and how to get through the harder parts, and in her three part serial, Heartless, she makes us fall all over again.

Elizabeth Lyons has one rule for herself: No Distractions. No distractions basically translates into No Men; which definitely means HELL NO when it comes to Daniel Alexander.

After a chance meeting at a professional function Daniel is not interested in letting Elizabeth go. No matter how much Elizabeth tries to stay away from Daniel, he’s not the kind of guy who lets something he wants walk out of his life. The question is, will she let him catch her?

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This is a serial romance told over three episodes. We follow Elizabeth and Daniel through the three stories as they overcome obstacles that threaten to stop them. The books are available to buy on Amazon in both the UK and the US.

Although these books all come together to tell the story, I feel as though each one contain the same inner, deeper message that I think all people need to know – especially young girls and women. That having your own dreams, and ambitions, doesn’t make you heartless, and in fact, the right person will only love you more because of this.

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In the opening chapter, Sterling’s main protagonist Elizabeth was cheated on which is the reason behind her no distraction rule. His excuse? That she was too ambitious, that she worked too hard to achieve her own dreams. He both wanted and needed someone who instead of building her own dreams, would help build his instead, and fuel his ego.

The heartbreaking part of it all? She allowed herself to believe it, swearing off men, and love, for good. That is, until Daniel swoops in to show her that not all men are the same.

The idea that a woman being “too ambitious” for someone is ludicrous, and reading that particular conversation only angered me. How dare he tell her her dreams were too big? Who was he to say no one would want her because she was passionate, driven and wanted to be successful?

It struck a chord with me, because I felt as though I could see these qualities reflected in myself, and it’s exactly how those who have worked with me and people close to me would describe me. People have often said they have been intimidated by what I do, so this only reminded me of that.

“He said that I was too focused on what I wanted for my future. I didn’t give him enough attention because my dreams were too big. And no guy would ever want someone like me because I wanted too much for myself.”
I couldn’t listen to another word without wanting to smash something. “What kind of insecure piece of sh** doesn’t want his girlfriend to be successful?”
– J. Sterling, Heartless: episode 2

What Sterling does is show us that this is not what love is – needing someone to feed your ego, to make you feel less alone, to build on your dreams instead of their own. This is conditions, and real love is not conditional. It’s not “I’ll love you if you’re less driven,” or “I’ll love you if you keep me warm at night,” or “I’ll love you if you give me your attention.” This is having strings attached, and when you give “love” with strings attached, it isn’t love – its control.

I could go on forever explaining everything that love is in an attempt to give you the clearest picture. But truthfully, that wouldn’t even cover the start of it. This is why we have these kinds of books and authors like Sterling, that show us the best that love can be in their stories. In Heartless, she shows us that when you fall in love, you build each other up and support each other. You are proud to be the person standing beside them; it’s respecting each other, being alive and vibrant and strong and passionate and truthful. And most of all, it’s unconditional.

“But when it comes to me and the qualities that I’m attracted to, I look for that inner drive in a woman.” His hand balled into a fist, and he placed it over his heart. “When I look at you, I see that fire. Maybe I respect it so much just because I can relate to it. I don’t know, but I do know that I want someone who gets what I’m going through every day. I want someone who knows how to build me up and make me a better man. Because that’s exactly what I want to do for her.” – J. Sterling, Heartless: episode 2

When we meet the right person, they will only love you more because you are driven and passionate and determined. In fact, it will be the qualities they admire most in you. And they’ll want to help you make you a better person and help you through each day; in the exact way you will for them.

Anyone else who makes you feel less about yourself because you work hard for your own future and are passionate enough to pursue your dreams are not worth your time or energy. They’re not the right person for you to be with and no one should have to put up with that or believe it. Simply: they’re not worth you.

“Are you mad at me?” His eyes widened in surprise.
“At you? Why would I be mad at you?” His teeth ripped through a piece of the bread. “I’m mad at the d***head who said that to you, the guy who put that in your head and allowed you to believe it.”
– J. Sterling, Heartless: episode 2

I think this message is so important for all women, and especially to young girls growing up in this day and age to bear in mind whilst they make futures for themselves. But it also important to everyone, to remember to keep fighting for yourself, for your future, and to love yourself, despite what anyone else tell you. Don’t let the voices of negative people put you down, and don’t put yourself down by listening to those voices.

For more from J. Sterling:

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