Caillat wrote this song with Jason Reeves
, an Iowa songwriter who met Colbie the first day he came to Los Angeles. The two hit it off and wrote most of the songs on Coco
together. Reeves told us how this one came together: "I was living in the same city as her, but I wasn't with her. I wasn't living with her. So one day she was at home and she had come up with the verse for 'Realize,' at least the first part of it. And she sent it to me through email for some reason. I think she just may have been so excited she just wanted me to have it right away. But we didn't get together in person because this was the first time I've ever had a chunk of a song emailed to me. She was asking if I could come up with anything else. And right away when I heard it, something clicked. I had a guitar and the rest, like the pre-chorus and the chorus just came out right away. I recorded it and sent it back to her, and she loved it, fortunately. So I think it wasn't till after that happened that we got together and finished the rest of it in the studio. But I'd never mailed back and forth like that."