Everyone has a past but the way in which we resolve our past and move forward with our future varies from person to person. By “lingering past,” I do not mean someone who has children from a previous relationship or someone that is divorced. It is possible for people to be divorced and have moved on. In addition, it is also possible for two people to be over their relationship and to be able to co-parent successfully. I am referring to people who have a past where the door is still open, communication is most likely still frequent, and/or there are unresolved feelings for someone else. It also can refer to people who might not be in constant contact with an ex but they truly are not over the breakup and if their ex were to contact them, they are ready to pick up from where they left off. These are all examples where the message is clear that the person is unable to live life in the present and are still stuck living in their past. This is a major red flag and should be avoided at all costs. Let me repeat myself, please avoid dating people with a lingering past at all costs! You might be wondering why I am so adamant about this and I can explain why.
They Probably Have Someone Else in the Back of Their Mind – Even if the person expresses that they are into you and like you very much, that does not mean much if they also feel this way towards someone else from their past. You deserve to be someone’s top priority when you are in an exclusive relationship and if you discover that you are not, then it is time for you to move on altogether. It is also selfish for the other person to be sharing their heart with more than one person which should be a good enough reason for you to want to move on.
Always the Chance That They Leave You For the Other Person – Anyone who is dating someone with an unresolved past is taking a huge emotional gamble. I say this because even though you really care for the person and they appear to feel the same towards you, it is very easy for them to leave you for an ex if they are still interested in them. It is a harsh reality but one that cannot be ignored because oftentimes this happens and the person who ends up being left with a broken heart is you if you allow yourself to get close to someone who never was fully over their ex to begin with.
Lack of Trust From the Start – It goes without saying that trust is a fundamental necessity in any healthy relationship. Personally, I think that it is tough to trust someone who has a lingering past because you never truly know what is on their mind in terms of their genuine feelings towards you plus you always have to worry in the back of your mind if they are talking to an ex in secrecy or trying to reconnect with them–whether it be emotional and/or physical (such as meeting in person). It is for this reason why this is a no go because if your instincts are telling you that there is a lack of certainty within the relationship due to their past, there is a good chance that your instincts are valid. This also leads to the underlying issue that trust is not there meaning that it is not worth making an emotional investment. As I mentioned above, these types of relationships should not begin in the first place and if you find out or get any sense that their past is not left in their past, it calls for instant termination of the relationship because ultimately there really is no “relationship.”
It is inevitable that you are going to be faced in situations within your life where someone conveys their interest in you and you are not interested. You might be in the dating world where you are looking to find a partner but along the way you come across people who like you and it simply is not mutual. It can also happen while you are taken and someone tries to make a move on you. While it can be awkward at times to tell someone that you do not have a romantic interest, it has to be done or else it can become an ongoing problem and just a straight up annoyance that could have been avoided from the get go. So what can you do about it?
No matter how you go about it, you need a proactive approach and to be firm with your message. The problem is, sometimes people deliver a message but it becomes a mixed message because it was not firm enough or it can be misinterpreted. I truly believe the BEST way to make the message clear is to spell it out verbally. To some extent, I understand this is avoided because people do not want to hurt people’s feelings but is it really worth guarding someone’s feelings and living a lie in the process? I just do not see the point in doing this which is why you need to just directly say something. If you are married or in a relationship, it is very easy to just tell someone this because you are telling the truth and it should be understood by the other person that if you are taken, that you are not available in which you really do not owe any further explanation. If you are single, you have a few more options in how you want to go about it. Personally, I do not see the harm in telling someone, “I only see you as a friend” or “I do not see a connection and wish the best for you.” These lines are both truthful and polite. You also gain the other person’s respect by delivering the truth and by saving their time.
People often think the solution is to ignore someone which might be effective on some level but oftentimes it is not because it is too passive aggressive and does not really provide any closure. As a result, it can cause the other person to chase you even more to gain any little bit of your attention which is the opposite response you would want. It can also leave the other person to feel emotionally unsettled because even if they got the hint that you are not interested, curiosity will most likely still linger in the back of their minds as to why you blew them off or stopped talking to them altogether. It is also for this reason why I do not think it is a good idea or that it is right to not say something because in most scenarios, it is beneficial to provide some form of closure with your words. If the person is a stranger or someone you had not interacted much with, I suppose it is okay to just keep it moving but if it is someone that you were dating or talking to for a short amount of time, then it is best to just verbally express how you feel in whatever way feels most comfortable to you. Remember that at the end of the day, you are ultimately doing the other person a favor by telling them you are not interested, even if that means some initial emotional discomfort on their end at first. They will eventually move on and find someone that is just as interested in them in return–and that’s a good thing! ❤
Not to get too caught up with celebrity news; however, headlines recently broke out that J.Lo announced her (second) engagement to Ben Affleck, just a few days ago. If people remember back in the early 2000’s when they were referred to as “bennifer” along with them being previously engaged. Unfortunately, their engagement and relationship ultimately ended and they both went on with their lives to marry different people and have families of their own. Even though they were initially together about 20 years ago, I actually remember quite vividly their romance and that they were consistently in the public eye to be seen as one of Hollywood’s biggest celebrity couples at the time. So when they called it quits, I know many people were shocked–myself included.
Fast forward to the present day and it appears that they have picked up from where they have left off and plan to create a future together which now includes marriage. Although I have mixed feelings regarding this, it makes you wonder, can love be rekindled much later in life? For example, I have heard scenarios of high school sweethearts who went their separate ways only to reconnect much later in life after a failed marriage or simply after an extended time away from each other. Can this happen and is it possible for love to be successful the second time around? Although in most circumstances, I would have to say that it is very unlikely and that the chances are slim to none, as the saying goes, “never say never.” In other words, there are those rare instances where two people might not have been ready to be together but after a substantial amount of time has gone by, both people are ready to make it work for the long haul. It can take a series of life experiences to occur first before two people are ready to make it more serious. In addition, it is possible after a lot of time has gone by, that it had left room for one or both people to miss what they initially had because the grass is not always greener on the other side. It is hard to pinpoint exactly what would cause two people to get back together because it is situational but I have seen that this happens every so often and sometimes the couple is stronger than ever after being away from each other for so long.
While it is easy for me to judge on the outside negatively and say that this is unlikely to work out if it did not work out the first time, as I just mentioned, when it comes to love and most things in life–anything is possible. Although the past very much shapes the future, life can take many turns along the way and in certain cases that might mean opening a door that was once closed. Remember that your destiny is always evolving and your instincts will help guide you along the way. If that means rekindling a past love, so be it and just go with it because what is meant to be will be! ❤
It is natural to meet people who are not on the same level as you or perhaps does not give you the same level of respect, love, and support that you know that you deserve. And guess what? That is OKAY because you always have control in how you interact with others. Too often, people forget that they have this power and allow people to take advantage or waste their time. It is also common to see someone make an attempt to teach the other person what their standards are or to try to shape the other person to adapt. While that might work in certain scenarios, if it does, usually the results are SHORT TERM. In other words, the other person might go through the motions of “adapting” but realistically this person is only doing so to please the other person or to keep them in their lives. Most people are who they are which is why it tends to be an arduous task to change any individual. Usually it does not happen and it is wasted energy in my opinion because there is a far better solution–stop wasting your time on people who are not on your level.
I know that is something that not everyone wants to hear but that is the underlying issue at hand. Rather than settling or trying to fix someone, you are better off walking away. Even if you see some positive qualities, “some” usually is never enough. It is important to set the bar high at all times and this includes the people that you choose to be a part of your life. It is not worth being left disappointed all the time or feeling as though someone is constantly falling short. Trust me when I tell you that there are plenty of extraordinary people out there and that there are people out there who exist who you will find admirable and who inspire you. These are the types of people that you should try to associate yourself with and keep close to while the ones who do not meet your standards you can dismiss altogether.
When someone is distancing themselves from you or pulling away, it is natural to want to chase more or to try harder to earn back their validation. It is also common to see someone chase after someone they care about once the other person breaks up with them. People tend to hold onto false hope and optimism that by sticking around or by chasing the other person, this person will eventually change their mind and want to be together again or maybe build attraction again. The truth of the matter is, this typically has the OPPOSITE effect and is the wrong psychology. The reason why this is not effective is that if the other person has made up their mind already that they do not want to be with you or continue a relationship, then giving more of your attention is going to actually repel the other person and probably turn them off even more. The only way that there is a chance that things could potentially work out later is to remove your attention in its entirety and to provide them the space that they asked for. This gives the person the freedom and the time to think about what they want and the potential opportunity to miss you. That is why the quote, “Absence makes the heart grow fonder” exists is because sometimes time apart is needed in order to rekindle a connection or to realize how much this person was important to them. Keep in mind that there is no guarantee that the other person will miss you but at the very least, giving ample space allows for there to be a chance for this to happen.
Aside from giving the person space, you should also invest your energy into bettering yourself and moving on completely. It is a waste of time to go after someone who doesn’t see your value or want to be with you–bottom line. You are always better off leaving the person alone which also makes it easier for you to get over the person because you took your focus away from them. Also remember that there is no greater investment than investing in yourself and that you can do this in various ways. You can pick up a new hobby, spend quality time with friends, expand your career, etc. Your time is valuable so it is best to invest your time in self than investing it in someone who does not mutually feel the way same way about you. As I have mentioned previously, you naturally become more attractive to others when you possess self love and become your very best version of self but remember that regardless, you are doing this because YOU want to and not for anyone else.
When people are dating, it is possible to be in situations where you are dating more than one person at the same time. If you are not in a committed relationship, you have more dating opportunities along with more freedom in terms of your dating choices. Sometimes it is good to casually date different people to get a better sense of what you are looking for when you are ready to find a serious relationship or life partner; however, the majority of the time, I would not suggest dating multiple people at the same time.
For one, it is possible to form emotional attachments to more than one person if you are setting yourself up in a position to do so. If you only focused your time and energy into getting to know one person, then you do not run the risk of liking a few people at the same time. While that might not seem like a big deal, it can become problematic because you have to remember that these same people are also forming emotional attachments towards you and it is not fair to lead someone on if your intent is to spend time with more than one person. It is possible that they are doing the same thing as you are where they are dating a few people at once but unless you have that open conversation with someone, you never truly know for sure and one can always choose to conceal this information if they are a private and/or dishonest individual.
Aside from other people developing feelings for you, remember that it can go both ways where you can start to like more than one person. The issue with this is that when you are left with a few options, eventually you are going to have to make a choice and it is not sustainable to live your life dating multiple people simultaneously. It can create a high level of cognitive dissonance and internal conflicts because it does not feel right inside to develop feelings for more than one person at a time. From a moral standpoint, you might recognize that this is wrong and that this lifestyle cannot carry on forever. It is important to do the right thing by being open and honest with everyone who you are involved with. This will sometimes give you better clarity as to whether or not these relationships are temporary or have the potential to lead to something more serious in the future.
At the end of the day, it is your personal choice if you decide to date multiple people at the same time; however, always keep in mind how your actions can affect others including yourself. In order to prevent potential problems down the road, it is important to be transparent and make sure that people are aware of the situation and are accepting of it before moving forward. This is the best way to prevent misleading someone or hurting another person’s feelings. It is necessary that people are on the same page at all times which is why proceeding with honesty and caution is always the right approach within any dating scenario.
I can tell a lot about a person’s self confidence level based on their dating choices. When someone tells me that they are with someone who neglects, cheats, and/or shares with me instances of any other extreme form of disrespect–this illustrates to me that this person does not have enough self love or thinks very highly of self.Why? When people possess a high level of self confidence and loves self, then you will find that they are not in these unhealthy relationships or bad situations to begin with. They are able to put themselves FIRST and foremost before their significant other with ease and will opt to find their very best match as opposed to dating someone who doesn’t meet their standards. They also do not have a tolerance for bad behavior or any signs of mistreatment and are ready to walk away altogether whenever they see any reoccurring red flag in a relationship.
If you find yourself in a situation where you are unhappy with your partner, it is important to dig deep and determine the reasons why you feel that way while also taking the time to look from within and examine your own level of self love. If you feel down about yourself, it might not be the best time in your life to be in a relationship. The reason being that you need to love self and be your best self before pursuing dating on a serious level. If you can work on yourself, not only are you benefiting your very best asset (that’s you) but you are also setting yourself up for attracting a desirable partner whom you can offer your best while also receiving the best in return. It is a win/win situation on both sides and the foundation of a fulfilling and rewarding relationship when you have two people who equally feel confident about themselves along with the overall success of their relationship.
While many people choose to be in a relationship or prefer to have a partner, it is natural to go through phases in life where you are single for long periods of time or you might have recently gotten out of a relationship. Some people feel bad about a failed relationship and/or might possess a deep feeling of loneliness from their single status. However, this does not have to be the case and no one should feel lesser of a person because of it. It is possible to be single and not be bothered by it–heck, there are even those who are happily single and choose to live this way. While that might seem like an oxymoron to some, it can actually be a positive thing to be single. How does one feel good about being single and what are the benefits?
Do What You Want on Your Terms – It is liberating to be able to do what you want and not have limitations. When you are in a relationship, sometimes you are not able to do what you want and you might find that you do not have as much free time as you use to have. Typically, you also have to check in with your partner before doing something whereas when you are single, you are a free agent.
Focus on Self Development – Although you should always be working on self development whether or not you are in a relationship, it is definitely easier to focus on yourself when you are by yourself. Again, it comes down to having more personal time which you can utilize to better yourself. This is also to your benefit because when you are at your best, this elevates your confidence while building your attraction level which ultimately will increase the likelihood of finding an equally high quality match when you are ready to.
Spent More Quality Time With Friends/Family – I find that many people who are in a relationship do not make time for their friends and family as they used to previously. While some people are good at finding that balance, many end up spending more time with their significant other and abandoning their friends and family. When you are single, this gives you the opportunity to still make quality time for other people other than the person you are with.
Final Note – It is natural for people to want to be in a relationship but remember that it is totally acceptable to be single too. It is way better to be single than to be in a relationship for the sake of it or to settle on a relationship that does not suit your best interests. Too often I see people stay in bad relationships because of this underlying need of being with someone (aka anyone) and out of the fear of loneliness. You are far more superior than that so stop settling! It is always best to stay single and wait for the right person to come into your life than to stay in an invaluable relationship.
When I think about dating and relationships, I do believe that there is potential between any two people given that they both share a mutual interest for each other. However, there are many dating scenarios in which the attraction just stays at the attraction level but never progresses further due to inconsistent communication or lack of it from one or both people. This is what I call a missed opportunity and also an unfortunate situation simply due to the fact that two people did not establish a healthy communication pattern or it fails to be initiated at all. This usually happens for a few reasons. One or both people might be unsure of how the other person feels about them so instead of pursuing it any further, they just sit back and expect the other person to contact them not realizing that the other person is doing the same thing! So the outcome is that you have two people who are equally attracted to each other but nothing happens because neither want to really make a first move or have to overextend themselves at the risk of getting hurt. Another reason a person might not reach out as often is due to a busy schedule or maybe having a fear that they might annoy the other person if they message too much. Whatever the reason is, these all hinder two people from exploring love and developing a genuine connection.
Communication should not be up in the air and left uncertain if you like someone because it sends a mixed message. This is why I also don’t believe “playing hard to get” is effective because if you have two people doing the same thing as I mentioned, then both people never end up getting together. While yes, this tactic can build lingering attraction up to some point but what is the point of attraction if the end goal doesn’t lead two people in seeing where that attraction leads? That is like bringing a beautiful meal out to you at a restaurant but you are not allowed to eat it. You can stare at it but you do not get the pleasure of tasting it. My point is, mutual attraction that is left at a standstill or remains stagnant will eventually lead one or both people to move on because it is not going anywhere anytime soon.
So how can this be prevented? Once you actually are in contact with someone that you like and want to continue to get to know, I think the best question to ask this person is, “How often would you like me to contact you?” What I love about this is that it is direct AF and conveys that you are leading the relationship and want to be in touch but also am mindful of what the other person feels most comfortable with. If the other person responds in a way that suggests they do not want to be in contact with you much at all, this is a good thing because then you know not to invest as much of your time and you might consider walking away altogether. Time is our most valuable spiritual asset so if someone hints any disinterest, that is your cue to keep it moving. If the person expresses that they want to be in contact more frequently, then you know the person is interested in you and you now have a sense of how often you should be in touch with them without overstepping their boundaries and taking up too much of their time. I think it is a win/win set up and one that leaves a good first impression. It is appealing when someone is proactive and steps it up rather than playing a guessing game because most guessing games often lead to a game over.
Many people use ultimatums within their relationships in hopes to change a behavior or to get what they want from the other person. My immediate thought is, if you have to give an ultimatum–then you are not with the right person.Why? If you were with the right person, both people would be on the same page in which there would be no need to give an ultimatum. For example, if you have to say to someone, “I will only date you if….(fill in the blank)“ then it shows that you are not accepting the person for who they are and you are potentially forcing someone to change against their will. Meaning that even if the person complies and gives in to the ultimatum, it often times is not their personal choice and can cause resentment over time. Rather than trying to force upon a change within the relationship with an ultimatum, it is much healthier to communicate with your partner what your needs, expectations, and boundaries are from the start. If you find that your significant other is falling short of what you ultimately are looking for in a life partner, even after you have spelled it out and have had open discussions about it–rather than giving an ultimatum, you are actually just better off breaking it off because chances are, the person’s behavior was not going to change anyhow and as I mentioned before, it is clear that both people were not in sync enough with one another. Too often I see people trying to change their partners with various tactics including ultimatums and they simply fail because it just reveals the incompatibility between two people and that they do not belong together.
Let’s look at the flip side of the coin for just a moment. What if you are the recipient of an ultimatum?Hypothetically, what if your partner is imposing an ultimatum on you? Now what?Again, the bottom line is that you have two people with a totally different outlook on the relationship and chances are, the relationship is not built to last. I also consider ultimatums to be a control tactic and a red flag immediately goes up if I were to be in a situation where someone has to give me one. Personally, I have a ‘take it or leave it’ approach to my relationships so if a person is going to give me an ultimatum, my response is, “We are better off breaking up because I’m not going to do something that I am not comfortable with.” Again, I do not want anyone putting demands on me that go against my value system and the core of who I am. If someone cannot accept me for me then I know that I am in a much better position terminating the relationship on the spot and being alone as opposed to continuing a relationship that easily can turn into a very toxic and controlling one. It is a lose/lose situation either way because ultimatums tend to cause separation, tension, and future problems. If one person complies, they are setting themselves up for an unhealthy relationship by giving their partner the power to continue to control them. If the recipient decides to end the relationship, then the other person is at a loss of their partner when they might have been able to find a healthy solution or communicate in a way that would have prevented a permanent break up.
This leads me to my final point that ultimatums should be avoided altogether as there are much better ways to promote healthy change through providing positive support to one another, making a commitment to express self openly and honestly at all times, and offering fair compromises to create unison. If you find that you are in a relationship where your partner is placing unreasonable demands on you or that you are with someone who is not capable of making the changes needed on their own terms to ensure a lasting future, then do not forget that you always have the option to walk away, never look back, and start over–and there is nothing wrong with that.