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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Love Blinders: the Different Lenses We Use to View Relationships

When it comes to love, I am no stranger to seeing things through rose-colored eyeglasses. I have been guilty of seeing things through loneliness, vengeful, and fear-driven lenses. From ignoring red flags to starting relationships based on internal problems like insecurity and the desire to escape aloneness, I have seen it all.

After more than a decade of relationship, I have finally found myself in a healthy relationship. I took my blockers off and wound up with a excellent man. However, it did not come easily to me. I had to ruin my protective eyewear so I could see the forest for the trees, so to speak.

This came at a price tag. I had to stare myself in the mirror and actually ask the difficult question: What was I doing wrong? When I did this, everything became clear. I wasn’t satisfied with myself. And I was settling for men who could never give me what I deserved based only on the fact that I couldn’t face myself and my own difficulties.

My ruling had become so clouded that I found myself falling for folks whom, as it was, I did not actually like. They were apparent opposites of what I had in a partner, but at the time it did not matter. They had been there and it was good enough. But decent enough isn’t wonderful. And if a relationship is not great, what is the point?

A good part of today’s 21st century associations are not seen through a transparent eye. They’re seen through blue screens and Instagram filters. They are desired from places where we refuse to research. The dark places, the lonely places, the areas which our inner child hides to prevent suffering still another heartbreak. But does seeing relationships from these many spectrums actually pay off in the long term? The brief answer is no.

When we refuse to acknowledge what our driving variables arewe refuse to accomplish exactly what it is we will need to overcome the relationships which have passed, consequently leaving us with yet another carry-on to lug around with us everywhere we go. Because ignorance is bliss and preventing the parts of yourself which will set you free is a great deal easier than taking the mask off.

This is not to say that you shouldn’t date if you are lonely or unhappy with certain aspects of your self. Loneliness and insecurity are things that everybody deals with from time to time. But it can’t be the reason you opt for a partner. A remedy for your loneliness is not any body in the bed beside you, it is the best one. And if you do not choose according to your deepest needs, you will end up blind over again.

Select a partner, not because they make you less lonely, but because they make you feel like you will never have to feel lonely again. And select a spouse because they know how to love you. Anything less is simply not worth settling for.

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How Can She Love You Once You Hate Yourself


“I know, I know, I am supposed to love myself,” a customer says to me. “Find more self respecting and self-trust. But in fact, I just want more than anything to discover deep connection with a spouse.

I hear this from a number of my male customers.

Felix pauses. He looks me over.

When he actually says this, I respond,”Why do you feel you are supposed to love yourself?”

I understand it, in my gut, from years of connections. Her love can not compensate for the love I do not have for myself.”

Knowledge without mastery is similar to a key with no door.

“I mean in the beginning, it is great and all. I feel completely filled with her. And as time passes… anyhow, you know the story… the same old me creeps back in. The person who’s discontent, discovering flaws in her, frustrated that she begins taking me for granted, not seeing me how she did, etcetera, etcetera. I’m hooked on the first part of things, you know, the rush, and then… it is always the same.”

“So you ache for something you have never been able to achieve,” I say.

“Fuck Yes!”

The second is thick with tragic irony. He laughs. I laugh. To get a splinter of time, it is not so heart-numbingly excruciating. Laughter gives him space.

“Imagine if you took the fire and energy of the’Fuck Yes!’ And brought it back to yourself”

He ponders this. I give him an opportunity to sink deeper into the question. I sense he knows the way to do it bring back the energy to himself.

He shuts his eyes. A minute passes, then another. He speaks.

“I have been checking out from myself for many years for a fantasy I don’t even think in. The fantasy of The One. I do it because I am lazy. I don’t wish to do the job to love myself. Why should I? I do not even know if I enjoy myself.”

BAM! I let the gravity of the final statement land. Can he remain in self-pity or move himself forward? A couple of minutes pass. He’s frozen.

“So you do not know if you enjoy yourself,” I say.

He does not respond. It would be easy to ask why and get all the details of his self-loathing, but for now, I am more interested in the effect of it.

“You know as well as I do, that in case you don’t enjoy yourself…”

“I know. I understand… how is someone else supposed to like or love me?” He becomes angry, short tempered.

“God damn it”

He starts breathing deeply, sighing, emitting sounds of distress. He is working himself hard.

After some time, I say,”Can you find the internal war going on in you?”

He looks up, eyes glassy, face flushed.

“Felix, you understand the failings of connection as you have pursued it previously. You know that nobody can love you enough to compensate for you not enjoying yourself. You said it. Not me. And yet, you reside in a reality where you always tell yourself that you should enjoy yourself when in actuality, you…”

He completes the sentence before I could.

With this understanding comes a peace, a reprieve, the reality. I see relief on his face. He is no more hiding behind the false mandate of how he should love himself.

Felix’s problem isn’t about self-love. It is about pulling the plug on the inner war inside of him. It is about accepting his self-loathing and moving forward from that point. Asking himself Is this how I need to live my life?

While, for sure, there would be deeper work to comprehend where his loathing came out, for today it is about seeing clearly the playing area of his inner system and working from there.

The unwinding of self-loathing is a far deeper practice than loving one’s self.

Will he do the job?

Find a guide, mentor, coach or therapist who can help you cut through your blind spots. The price is too good to wait.

This post was formerly published on Stuartmotola.com and is republished here with permission from the author.

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I’ve Done All I Know to Save My Marriage But My Wife Is Not Responding. What Now?

Q: I have done all I know how to save my marriage, but my spouse is not responding. What’s your advice on what I should do next?

A: Well first, I respect you for doing everything that you can do to save your marriage. So your wife is not responding, like she’s completely ignoring you? Like she’s emasculating you daily? She is just telling you”Oh honey, everything’s fine!” She is move out? There are many phases of not reacting where there actually is. There’s always a chance but you want her on board to make that chance. You can not control another person and when she’s done, remember you can not control her, it might be {} to just bless and release her, and move on; if you really feel you’ve done everything you can. You can not get blood from a stone. Do not continue banging your head against a wall when she’s not changing, it’s time to surrender –“Ok, I give” — let us complete and proceed in a manner that is aware and sort and self-honoring, and honoring of her, to the best that you can.

When you haven’t tried treatment, if you have not tried coaching, that’s a stone still left unturned. I would certainly do that. If she won’t come along for the ride– you can not control her, you can not drag her along for the ride. Something must have occurred where she’s decided that she is done. And next is for you to find support to sit at the distress and the flame of”Ow, I did everything I could and I {} make it work.” There’s just a great deal of heaviness to go through but it may also be the most nourishing, self-evolving, self-loving, confidence builder, heart expanding, time of your life.

So please be ready to contact me for training because this might be a moment, in the event that you indeed opt to finish the relationship, where you are gonna need someone to have your spine, as you walk through the shadow until the light appears again. It would be my chance to be there for you. You can email my supervisor at [email protected], that way it’ll come straight through me. If you’re interested in doing some work, this could truly be a fantastic time. If there’s that window of opportunity she’s ready to join you, then let us do those six sessions together and cure whatever is in the manner of you two coming back together for stage two of your connection or finishing phase one and discharging each other with ease and grace. It would be my joy and my love is with you.

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You can not control someone else.

What Now? Appeared on The Great Men Project.

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