Don’t you just hate having to start over?
That’s what a lot of us do each time we start a new relationship. We didn’t do that last one right so we have to start over. The problem is…we generally don’t fix what’s broken. We just cover it up and move on.
This afternoon as I was looking out my apartment window, I noticed a medium sized pot hole in the parking lot that wasn’t there a few days ago. The bouts of cold weather we’ve had in the past week or so has probably contributed to this pot hole and a large crack in the pavement that emanates from it.
What makes this unusual is that this parking lot had just been repaved less than 18 months ago. In just that short period of time the parking lot has developed some significant cracks and now pot holes.
As I watched the paving crew work last summer I thought it strange that they didn’t do any significant work to the underlying surface. They sealed some cracks, did some minor repairs to a couple of spots damaged by heavy garbage truck traffic and that was about all.
Now, we’re seeing significant damage to the existing surface. Rather than the crew tearing up all the old pavement and fixing the substructure problems they simply paved over all the existing problems. It would have been more work up front, but the parking lot would have lasted much longer.
This got me to thinking about how many people do all kinds of work to “fix up” the outside and little or nothing to fix the underlying problem. They take a superficial approach to dating and relationships by looking only at the problem as one on the outside.
For example; most people I know ask questions like “Why would he do that to me?” or “How could she just walk away?”
When you look to the outside for answers, you’re only looking to treat the symptoms. It’s like putting on a new dress or new suit and expecting your personality to change. You’re not looking to find the root cause of those symptoms. Rather than ask “Why would he do that to me?” change the question to “Why am I LETTING him do that to me?”
In the long run, it doesn’t matter why someone treats you poorly. It only matters why you let them treat you that way. If you’re not willing to take a look at your “why” you will continue to suffer the same problems day in and day out.
As long as you give away your power by accepting poor treatment from other people they will continue to do it. As long as you continue trying to cover things up and only work on the outside you’ll continually run into the same problems with virtually every relationship.
It isn’t until you understand and believe that you deserve better that you can break away from the pattern of ending up in poor relationships.
Most of your dating problems are self-inflicted. You only look at what someone is doing to you or how they’re mistreating you or how they’re verbally or physically abusing you.
When you start looking in the other direction, when you start looking at yourself and asking, “Why am I letting him/her do that?”, then, and only then, can you start to make some forward progress.
You’re the common denominator in all your relationships. If you’ve been in a long-term relationship and are continually told “nobody else will want you”, “you’re not good enough”, “you’re not pretty enough”, “you’re not smart enough”, you’re going to start to believe their garbage.
The longer you spend time in a relationship like this, the harder it is to extract yourself from it. In spite of the terrible way you get treated, you may see some good qualities that you don’t want to leave. The problem with that thinking is that you get sucked into their toxic thinking and question your own value and worth.
If you’re in a toxic relationship, you deserve far better than what you have right now. It is painful to leave, especially if you’ve invested several years in the relationship. The question becomes, how long do you want to be unhappy? You know deep in your soul that things aren’t going to change.
The pain of leaving is always greater than the pain of staying. However, the pain of leaving is only temporary. The pain of staying is permanent.
You need to stop accepting someone else’s value of you and recognize that you’re worth so much more. You have to stop accepting scraps of kindness punctuated by the daggers of a wicked and evil tongue.
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