I used to be friends with several ex-boyfriends.
I would hang out with them regularly. I would invite them out on the weekends. I would chat with them on the phone.
One of them eventually became a best friend. My inner circle couldn’t understand how I could continue to include the men I had previously dated in my life. Some of those relationships had been challenging. A couple of those relationships hadn’t ended so well. But somehow after doing plenty of soul searching and licking my wounds, I found the space in my heart to continue to include them in my life, in a new way.
HOW IS THAT POSSIBLE?
Contrary to what you may believe, when a relationship ends, you don’t have to become archenemies or strangers with your ex. This concept may be foreign to you. Perhaps you had a relationship that was full of conflict. You could have been abused. Mistreated. The list could go on and on.
I am certainly not condoning ANY sort of mistreatment, abuse, disrespect, or inhumane act that you encountered. I am not going to convince you to remain in a toxic or unhealthy relationship. I definitely don’t want you to bypass the experience you had on a spiritual or emotional level either.
Sometimes the most loving thing we can do for ourselves and for another person is to say goodbye, permanently.
What I want for you post-breakup is to get back to a place of peace and wholeness within yourself.
This process MAY include your ex. Or it may look like letting him or her go for good. Either way, it is perfect because your choice will come from a place of deep love, trust and truth within you.
WHAT WE HAVE LEARNED ABOUT ROMANCE IS MOSTLY UNTRUE
This idea that we have to “hate our ex,” comes from a very outdated belief system. I believe that this idea was etched into our minds long before we even knew what dating was! Think back to when you were a child. You may remember those fairy tales of prince charming and the princess living, “happily ever after.” Those unrealistic storylines set you up for plenty of disappointment and failure in your future partnerships.
Romantic relationships are not about riding off into the sunset with your prince or princess and living a perfect fairy tale life.
It is important to feel loved. Laugh together. Have fun. Be supportive. Etc. But expecting that to occur ALL THE TIME is simply unrealistic.
Romantic partnership is there to foster your personal and spiritual growth. You evolve. You learn. That may occur through the blissful and the not so blissful moments in your partnership. Growing up, I longed to have a fairy tale romance. But after years of constant disappointment I knew I had to shift my perspective.
When I dropped my expectations and attachments around romance there was an immediate shift in how I related to men.
My current partnership is the closest experience I have ever had to a fairy tale. We aren’t riding off into the sunset on a white horse. We certainly have our ups and downs, but I am no longer controlling how it should unfold based on characters in a children’s book or a Hollywood movie. It has made for a far more organic, fluid and enjoyable ride.
Loosen up and let go of your expectations of and attachments to how you THINK your relationship should have been and how you believed it should have worked out. In turn, you will adopt a more realistic perception about the true nature and purpose of romantic relationships.
YOU ARE GETTING EXACTLY WHAT YOU NEED
One of the most fundamental things I have learned over the course of my dating years is that every relationship is precisely giving me what I NEED. That certainly hasn’t always fit into my mind’s agenda of what a relationship “should be like.”
I longed for an evolved and mature relationship for years. I always thought that I was ready. Yet over and over again, I found myself going through breakup after breakup feeling further and further away from being with my dream man. My ego was consistently bruised and banged up.
After considerable inner work and research in this area, I got to the bottom of why that was happening so frequently. I discovered that my romantic relationships had been strategically put into my life for a purpose that was bigger than my own limited mind.
I tossed out my narrow views of what a relationship should be like. Let go of the need and attachment to be in a relationship. I stopped acting like a victim. I was able to see clearly how I was solely responsible for the relationships I had been choosing.
I noticed common themes and patterns showing up in each man I dated. I learned how my life experiences influenced the type of men I was attracting. I discovered limiting belief systems, concepts and outdated ideas that contributed to the demise of my relationships. I embarked on a quest to get to the bottom of the lessons, blessings and gifts that each partner was there to teach me.
By acknowledging the concept that every romantic relationship is giving you what you need will set you up for success in your next partnership.
The hungrier you are to learn, evolve and transcend as an individual, the closer you will be to having the relationship you desire deep down.
THE COMMON DENOMINATOR IN EVERY RELATIONSHIP
The common denominator in every relationship isn’t about the stories or the perceptions you have of the other person. The common denominator in every relationship is YOU. I didn’t understand this until I chose to take a step back from dating.
When I did, I realized that the common thread in all of my relationships was ME! It wasn’t just about my ex and what he did or didn’t do. I was one half of every partnership. I chose the men I dated. I was 100% responsible for what I allowed, accepted and avoided in each relationship.
If you don’t like the outcome of your relationship it is your responsibility to change. It is your duty to do your inner work to make your next experience different. You can’t change anyone else, but you can change you. YOU are the one making the choices and the decisions to create the outcomes in your daily life.
Remaining in a state of hostility, blame, victimhood, hatred and self-pity is fine for a few days or several weeks after your breakup. But choosing to hold on to these feelings toward the other individual in your life for months or even years is futile. It enables you to suffer and it damages you.
Your only task post-breakup is to commit to getting back on a path to your inner peace. When you have attained inner peace there will be no charge or trigger when you think about or interact with that individual. You will know that you have taken full responsibility for your actions, thoughts and feelings. You will have learned all of your lessons. You will feel complete.
A feeling of gratitude and appreciation for your ex may start to fill your entire being. You will know that it was perfectly designed to help you evolve into a fuller more expansive version of you.
Looking back, I am now deeply grateful for those challenging relationships. Having my buttons pushed wasn’t enjoyable at the time, but it certainly forced me to get to know myself better. The more I loved myself, the more love I was able to give to others.
There is no greater gift than that in the world.
That is how I was able to remain friends with some of my exes.
When you reach this point you will know if it feels right to include or not include your ex in of your life. The decision will come from a place of love and truth.
If you aren’t experiencing healthy and loving partnerships, take this as a sign that it is time to get to know yourself. Commit to YOU and in no time you will get back on the path of peace once and for all.
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