Sometimes the best way to learn is from other's mistakes. Especially others who may now be living a life you want. This week I interviewed clients who are now in loving relation- ships about their worst dating mistakes as singles. Then I added some of my own dating mistakes to the list. These are the kind of mistakes that seem obvious when you look back, but are completely invisible when you are in the thick of things. Hopefully this list will help you avoid making these mistakes yourself.
1. Hiding who you are to fit into a relationship. Hiding who you are takes a ton of energy to maintain. You can only suppress your emotions, reactions and needs for so long. Eventually, and sooner rather than later, who you are will start showing up and shocking the person you are with.
Looking back, once you are in a loving relationship, you will realize that: You started to be able to attract your right partner precisely when you decided you were good enough to never hide again.
2. Confusing the trappings of love for real love. Trappings of love can be frequent phone calls, wanting to see you and be with you, flowers, cards, compliments, poems, over the top attention, etc. All of these are the stuff associated with love. All of these may make you feel loved and wanted, as if you found the right mate.
Looking back, once you are in a loving relationship, you will realize that: These trappings did not necessarily mean the person was in love with you. These are simply a few ways people express like, desire, attraction, and yes, love. These are also ways people behave out of habit, to be nice, to be liked, because they think they should, because they get caught up in the moment. Real love shows itself in more powerful ways, such as friendship, support, acceptance and communications and uses the trappings of love as the icing on the cake.
3. Blaming relationship mishaps on the other person. Have you ever done this one? The relationship goes south, there is a bad argument or even a breakup, and all you can see is the other person caused the problem.
Looking back, once you are in a loving relationship, you will realize that: You play a 50% or more role in everything that happens in the relationship. You play this role either actively by choices you make or passively by choices you fail to make.
4. Not allowing time to heal between relationships. Ok, so you are out of a relationship. You hate being alone, you hurt. You hate not having someone to share your life with. You find a new person and get into a relationship. But are you available to love a new person? Are you ready for a new relation- ship?
Looking back, once you are in a loving relationship, you will realize that: Love deserves grieving and you deserve time to learn from a failed relationship. You will realize being alone is not a punishment nor is it torture. It is a gift of getting to know yourself. And you will realize your ability to be alone is what gives you the strength to create a loving relationship.
5. Attraction means you are meant to be together. You feel attracted, drawn to someone and he or she to you. The relationship is obviously meant to be. Especially so if there many commonalties between the two of you. More so if you were brought together in a unusual, meant to be sort of way.
Looking back, once you are in a loving relationship, you will realize that: These encounters were meant to be, alright, but not necessarily in a way you thought. Most times, such encounters bring lessons, not loving relationships. True love more often than not reveals the meant to be aspect when you no longer need the evidence.
Look for Part II of this article on WhatItTakes.com
This article was originally published by Coach Rinatta Paries in The Relationship Coach Newsletter, a weekly e-zine for people who want fulfilling relationships. For singles, the newsletter will help you attract your Mr. or Ms. Right. If you're in a relationship, learn to create much more closeness and intimacy with your mate.
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