How Do You Know When It’s Really Over?

Most people I’ve coached or treated were in relationships that they understood were over for a year or so before they really ended it.

This is truly really common. It happens for several reasons. Fear of leaving something. Guilt of hurting somebody. Hope {} get better. Not sure if it’s you or if the connection is in factn’t repairable. Not wanting to be the person who ends it. Thinking you can change somebody. Kids. Not wanting to move out or ruin the living arrangement. And it doesn’t matter if they are valid or not. They’re all actual .

So then how can you know if the relationship is really over and it is time to proceed?

I believe this is one of the toughest life questions to answer. It really is. I have fought with it so many times.

But here is the reality.

You’ll never really really know whether the relationship is truly over. I have seen relationships grow from the dead. I have seen people rebuild after lying and cheating. I have seen people who can not stand each other fall in love again. There are so many facets, controllable and uncontrollable in a connection that comes into play. There are several internal shifts that could happen which are unexpected. There are revelations we have daily that alter the dynamic and our choices. We’re indecisive animals who change like the wind, based on our feelings and our thoughts. F*ck, I’m among the most indecisive people I know.

So it is not about knowing if the relationship is truly over. Because miracles happen. Because there’s absolutely not any relationship physician that can predict results with one hundred percent certainty.

It is about asking yourself this simple question.

Is the connection causing you to break up with yourself?

Allow me to explain.

First, let’s talk about what that really means. Are you losing yourself? Are you drifting from who you really are? Can you feel invisible and helpless and have no sense of who you are?

Before you answer these questions, you need to ask yourself just how much of these feelings are because of the connection and how much of them is on you and where you are at in your life?

Many blame their relationship since they are in a sh*tty place in their lifetime. If that’s true, you must get your own sh*t and reconstruct yourself. As you rebuild yourself, the dynamic of this relationship will change. Or perhaps it will not if the other person is finished. Bear in mind, you’re only fifty percent of any relationship and that is what makes understanding if it is truly over impossible.

On the flip side, if it’s your connection that is causing you to break up with you, then it is only a matter of time until you become so unhappy it is over. There’s a ticking clock and for a few, based upon your anxieties, your story, your own definitions, and so many things, it might be months or it can take a year.

But it should not be a waiting game.

And this is the part I really want italicize. This is what I’d like for you to remove this guide, if anything. Particularly if you’re in something at the moment and you do not know what to do since you do not know if it is truly over.

(Assuming you are not in an abusive relationship. If you are in an emotional or physically abusive relationship, and your spouse is doing nothing to change himself or herself, it is over.)

Just. Wait.

For another person or the connection to change.

Do something. I can tell you it is your responsibility but I will take another approach. Trust me. I have had to take that and it is heavy and it stinks.

So what do you do?

Aside from the obvious like couples counselling and communicating, you begin to rebuild your relationship with yourself.

So many men and women think repairing a connection just has to do with the energetic and another person and forget about the connection with themselves.

So the big question is what does it look like to begin working on the connection with yourself?

I can let you know what it looked like for me.

Lots of being.

For the majority of my life, I have lived with sound. Drowning in my own thoughts. You must be still to think clearly or you are just reacting. If you wish to connect with yourself, you must minimize the mental chatter. I lived from my torso. Connecting with me meant linking to my breath and staying out of my mind.

Seeking new adventures.

We learn about ourselves through new experiences. Not through our ideas. And new experiences do not only fall on our lap. We must seek them. That means we must give ourselves. In these new adventures, I began to create new beliefs about myself.

Having non-negotiables.

Non-negotiables produced a frame for me to begin rebuilding me.

Committing to promises I made to myself (this is the way you construct self-esteem).

When it came to promises I made to myself, I spoke plenty of sh*t but seldom did anything. You can not construct self-esteem if you keep breaking promises you have made to yourself. The action of keeping promises for you is what loving yourself resembles. This is how I began to trust myself again.

Standing on my own truth.

I ceased trading my truth for membership. I began to care less about what others thought and did what I felt was fair to me. In every area of my life. Period.

I lost my voice several years back. When you lose your voice, you reside muted. And that is not living. I allowed myself to be heard. Not just by speaking up but also through creative expression such as writing.

Discovering my desires and needs, and understanding the difference.

You need to know what you need before you can actually give that. So I began to discover exactly what I wanted and did not want. In every area of my life. But before that, you must know what you require. And that comes before your needs. It is the foundation.

Finding a sense of purpose.

I never actually had a sense of purpose. So I simply floated through life pursuing things. Goal gave me tracks. And it pulled me from my own unhappiness because there was something greater.

I worked out but never really connected to my body. Movement throughout my body made me feel complete and whole rather than just having parts.

I eventually started liking myself by accepting myself. All sections of me as I began to let go of my insecurities and clinic self indulgent and compassion. I realized how insignificant all {} stuff was in the larger picture. I guess I never had a much bigger image before.

As you proceed through this process of rediscovering and reconnecting with yourself, your relationship with your spouse will either get better or worse. You men will grow nearer or drift apart. Naturally. You may either rediscover love with your spouse or drift.

And that is when you will truly know if it is over.


This post was initially published here and is republished with permission from the author.

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The Purchase Price of Heartbreak [Podcast]

The end of any connection can be debilitating, but it may also open the door to finding something better.

Listen to Real Men Feel, #137,”The Cost of Heartbreak” here:

Writer, Rick Sharpe, joins us to talk about his experience with depression after the end of a connection and finding the power in his own vulnerability.

“I was the posterchild for preventing vulnerability.

Rick’s book and this dialog focus on finding the power in vulnerability in addition to learning the difference between reacting and responding.

Issues and Questions Include:

  • What’s you living in Dubai?
  • What prompted your book, the purchase price of Heartbreak?
  • Was this your first breakup?
  • What was your recovery process like?
  • Where did you learn it was wrong to become exposed?
  • What was the target of the book?
  • What is the best thing that’s happened from composing, the purchase price of Heartbreak?
  • Were you afraid to understand yourself?
  • What stands out as a key to your growth and recovery?
  • Some men respond to heartbreak by giving up on relationships completely, is that something you believed?

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Watch Real Men Feel, #137, the Purchase Price of Heartbreak, April 10, 2019
Notice: Rick joined us from Dubai and the movie froze a couple of times, but the sound is solid.

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I needed to learn how to appreciate how I am. That was a massive leap of faith. ” ~Rick Sharpe


Find out More about Rick in Rick-Sharpe. com

Check out Rick’s book, the Purchase Price of Heartbreak: Curing is mindfully feeling

Let us know what you thought here in the comments or shoot an email to [email protected].

Subscribe to the podcast in RealMenFeel.org/iTunes

Like the Actual Men Feel show on Facebook facebook.com/realmenfeelshow

Scroll down to the author bio for all the links to get more #RealMenFeel

A version of the post was previously published on RealMenFeel.org and is republished here with permission from the author.


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