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June 7, 2014

Now What? What to Do When the Last Relationship Ends.

couple kiss old timey

I wrote a post last week about the last relationship.

It was created for those of us who may not have realized what was really driving us into dysfunctional relationships. I also gave tips for freedom and then I was asked a great question by a reader:

“Now what?”

My advice….

Change it up!

Sometimes we can be quite myopic about our choices in love. Meaning, we have a certain type and we look for certain characteristics. Some of us don’t realize why we choose who we do. 

Many of us may are stuck in our subconscious trying to fix our parental issues.

We may have some deep insecurities related to what we believe we can attract.

There may not be the slightest bit awareness of our real fear: being rejected for who we authentically are; it keeps us playing it safe.

We may be clueless that we say no, when we should say yes. I’m sure many have heard that bit of advice, but it’s deeper than just changing an automatic reflex of yes or no, it’s to ask why is it there in the first place?

I’m not a spring chicken. One of the issues I had was the whole “cougar thing.” I’d no issue with who others chose to be in a relationship with, but for me, no thank you.

But, I didn’t know why.

I assumed it was irritation with the media and how it creates trends out of people’s personal lives. I didn’t realize my stating no to younger men was based on my insecurities as a woman. When I was real with myself, it was the fear of being disappointed, because once they see me…all of me, they’ll be disappointed. Therefore, I was really in a state of limitation and playing it safe, even when the signs of mutual mental, emotional and physical attraction were there.

I mean these men who were 5-10 years younger, actually spoke my language and I was discounting them, because of my fear. Period.

Around the time, I made this discovery, I also realized I had come to a low degree of fun in my life. I had become “all work, no fun.”

So, when someone asks me what I mean by changing it up, I say make a new list.

Throw away the old list and start from scratch.

Choose words that connect. Here are some of mine:

Fun.

In love and life, I committed to fun. It was a necessary element no matter what I was to do, which meant leaving my house and engaging in activities I truly enjoy.

Openness.

It was time to be open to what I had not yet experienced and had mentally excised from possibility in the past. I realized I would never know what it was really like, if I played it out in my head without action. I started saying yes, a lot more often and reminded myself the goal was fun!

Authenticity.

I pretty much show up as me in all situations, but when it came to dating, I was big on mystery and playing hard to get. At the same time I acted in those ways, I would put energy and effort into making sure I still showed up in a way where someone felt understood, not awkward and comfortable…so they would like me.

I stopped that b.s. and show up as me, open, fun and interested in seeing what happens in connection to my own truth.

Relaxed.

I relaxed and threw every bit of dating advice out the window, no rules and no self-admonishment about the state of my body, being or anything else I would nitpick in the past. I slowed down and allowed things to organically go where they would without the voice in my head interrupting too often.

Attention.

I pay attention to what matters. First, how I feel around someone. Am I smiling? Does it feel like heavy lifting? Am I just here, cuz I’m afraid there’s no one else? Am I listening, not just with my ears, but all of me?

Non-judgement

No one else’s opinion matters about what I do, so I get to do what I want, without worrying about what others may say or do.

Love.

Love life. Love experiences. Love myself. Love everyone. Love.

Creativity.

Expressiveness physically, emotionally and spirituality creating from today, not yesterday. It helped me to dump the rules, be present in the moment and not plan my future from a single experience with a man.

Community

I created a community of like-placed individuals, who were looking to move on from the last relationship too. Check it out. I also signed up for a hiking group (cuz I love it) and a tantric meditation group, what better way to connect to myself, meaning, all of me.

Love elephant and want to go steady?

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Editor: Renée Picard

Photos: Tina Stanley at Pixoto

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