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10 Reasons Why We Never Forget Our First Love

10 Reasons Why We Never Forget Our First Love

There are a lot of firsts we encounter in life, like owning our first car, having our first drink, and our first day at school. Firsts are some of the most memorable moments in life, and depending on the situation can either bring us a feeling of ecstasy or a sense of devastation. Either way, one thing most people remember is their first love.

Love is always special, but your first love moves you in a way that is inherently unique. It introduces you to feelings you have never had before, for better or for worse, and is accompanied by a sense of wonder, intrigue, and excitement. Even though your first love may not have lasted, it will be a part of who you are for the rest of your life.

When we think about our first love, there is a mixture of emotions we all feel which can be hard to explain. But why, even though our first love may have happened 5, 10, 15, or even 50 or more years ago, do a lot of us still think about it today?

Here are 10 reasons why our first loves are unforgettable:

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1. Your First Love is Powerful

The first time you fall in love can feel practically earth shattering. All of a sudden, you realize you care about someone else in a way that you didn’t fully understand was possible. Even though we are aware of love, the first time you experience it in the romantic sense opens up a world of possibility and excitement, coupled with a hint of fear. It is unlike anything you have felt before, making the person associated with this discovery a permanent fixture in your memory.

2. Your First Heartbreak is Powerful, Too

The only thing that rivals the intensity of your first love is your first heartbreak. Often, these feelings are surrounded by memories of the same person. For those who didn’t remain with their first love for the rest of their lives, the ending of that relationship was likely very painful, regardless of who initiated the end or whether it was amicable.

It’s hard to let go of your first love, to walk away from those early feelings that were almost magical. The amount of effort required, and the amount of pain felt, will likely stick with you for a lifetime.

3. Your First Love was Innocent

For most people, their first love was innocent. It was free of manipulation on their part and often developed organically over time. It wasn’t something you were trying to do, it just happened. The lack of motive or intention makes it seem even more special.

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After our first love, we are highly aware of what outcome we desire from any subsequent relationship. We may put more pressure on these relationships as we attempt to find something that brings us back to those initial feelings we felt the first time. This can cause us to act differently as we actively pursue that kind of connection again.

4. Your First Love Came with Other Firsts

Your first love was likely not the only first you experienced with the person who captured your heart. They may have encouraged you to try new things and take on new challenges, and were at least partially responsible for some of your personal growth. You also bore witness to the changes you incited in them and saw how people could support each other in a positive way.

In some cases, your first love may have also been involved in various physical firsts, and the emotional and chemical reactions that come with them. Whether it was a first kiss or the loss of virginity, these physical firsts are also memories we tend to carry with us throughout our lifetimes. Even in cases where things were clumsy or uncomfortable, most of these memories are looked at with a level of affection.

5. Your First Love Was Part of Your First “Us”

Though you may have identified as part of a couple before, your first love is often the first time you actually felt like you were part of an “us” or a “we.” This may represent the first time you made decisions based on what made sense for you as a couple, instead of you as an individual. You may have even prioritized the other person’s thoughts, opinions, or feeling above you own when faced with a decision, relinquishing a few your preferences in favor of someone else’s.

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6. Your First Love May Not Have Ended by Choice

It isn’t uncommon for first loves to be pulled apart more by circumstance than pure choice. For example, two students preparing to attend different universities may end a relationship instead of trying to make it work over a long distance. The same may also occur when presented with a job opportunity that would prove significant for one person’s career.

First loves are often young loves. During our youth, we do not always have the highest level of control over where our lives take us. Before reaching adulthood, we are tied to the activities of our families, which may require us to relocate based on the decisions made by our parents. Educational opportunities and early career options may also be a factor, as it may not be feasible to sacrifice one’s future in order to stay together.

7. Your First Love Represents Your Youth

Over time, thoughts of your first love don’t just refer to them, but to where you were at that point in your life. It may bring back memories of your youth, of a time that may seem much simpler when viewed in hindsight through the eyes of an adult. Longing for your first love may represent a longing to return to that simpler time.

8. Your First Love Represents Possibility

Along with representing your youth, your first love may also remind you of a time when the possibilities seemed endless and much of life felt new and exciting. Thinking of your first love may conjure up a variety of what-ifs, as you consider what could have been had you made different choices at key points in your life.

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9. Your First Love Changed You

Part of what inspires a first love is the positive effect you have on one another. A first love is often marked by a period of personal growth and development, a time of new experiences and facing your fears. As a result, the relationship helps shape who you are and how you proceed through the world, and may represent the first time you allowed someone else’s influence to have such a significant impact on who you are at your core.

10. Your First Love Only Happens Once

The biggest reason your first love will always be with you is that, no matter what, it is always your only first love. The first of any event can only happen once in a lifetime, making it special in it exclusivity. No matter who you later love, or how you change over time, your first love will always be the first, for the rest of your life.

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

For the original article by Celestine: 13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

“We all have problems. The way we solve them is what makes us different.” ~Unknown

“It’s not stress that kills us, it is our reaction to it.” – Hans Selye

Have you ever experienced moments when things just don’t go your way? For example, losing your keys, accidentally spilling your drink, waking up late, missing your buses/trains, forgetting to bring your things, and so on?

You’re not alone. All of us, myself included, experience times when things don’t go as we expect.

Here is my guide on how to deal with daily setbacks.

1. Take a step back and evaluate

When something bad happens, take a step back and evaluate the situation. Some questions to ask yourself:

  1. What is the problem?
  2. Are you the only person facing this problem in the world today?
  3. How does this problem look like at an individual level? A national level? On a global scale?
  4. What’s the worst possible thing that can happen to you as a result of this?
  5. How is it going to impact your life in the next 1 year? 5 years? 10 years?

Doing this exercise is not to undermine the problem or disclaiming responsibility, but to consider different perspectives, so you can adopt the best approach for it. Most problems we encounter daily may seem like huge issues when they crop up, but most, if not all, don’t have much impact in our life beyond that day.

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2. Vent if you have to, but don’t linger on the problem

If you feel very frustrated and need to let off some steam, go ahead and do that. Talk to a friend, complain, crib about it, or scream at the top of your lungs if it makes you happy.

At the same time, don’t get caught up with venting. While venting may temporarily relieve yourself, it’s not going to solve the problem ultimately. You don’t want to be an energy vampire.

Vent if there’s a need to, but do it for 15 to 20 minutes. Then move on.

3. Realize there are others out there facing this too

Even though the situation may be frustrating, you’re not alone. Remember there are almost 7 billion people in the world today, and chances are that other people have faced the same thing before too. Knowing it’s not just you helps you to get out of a self-victimizing mindset.

4. Process your thoughts/emotions

Process your thoughts/emotions with any of the four methods:

  1. Journal. Write your unhappiness in a private diary or in your blog. It doesn’t have to be formal at all – it can be a brain dump on rough paper or new word document. Delete after you are done.
  2. Audio taping. Record yourself as you talk out what’s on your mind. Tools include tape recorder, your PC (Audacity is a freeware for recording/editing audio) and your mobile (most mobiles today have audio recording functions). You can even use your voice mail for this. Just talking helps you to gain awareness of your emotions. After recording, play back and listen to what you said. You might find it quite revealing.
  3. Meditation. At its simplest form, meditation is just sitting/lying still and observing your reality as it is – including your thoughts and emotions. Some think that it involves some complex mambo-jumbo, but it doesn’t.
  4. Talking to someone. Talking about it with someone helps you work through the issue. It also gets you an alternate viewpoint and consider it from a different angle.

5. Acknowledge your thoughts

Don’t resist your thoughts, but acknowledge them. This includes both positive and negative thoughts.

By acknowledging, I mean recognizing these thoughts exist. So if say, you have a thought that says, “Wow, I’m so stupid!”, acknowledge that. If you have a thought that says, “I can’t believe this is happening to me again”, acknowledge that as well.

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Know that acknowledging the thoughts doesn’t mean you agree with them. It’s simply recognizing the existence of said thoughts so that you can stop resisting yourself and focus on the situation on hand.

6. Give yourself a break

If you’re very stressed out by the situation, and the problem is not time sensitive, then give yourself a break. Take a walk, listen to some music, watch a movie, or get some sleep. When you’re done, you should feel a lot more revitalized to deal with the situation.

7. Uncover what you’re really upset about

A lot of times, the anger we feel isn’t about the world. You may start off feeling angry at someone or something, but at the depth of it, it’s anger toward yourself.

Uncover the root of your anger. I have written a five part anger management series on how to permanently overcome anger.

After that, ask yourself: How can you improve the situation? Go to Step #9, where you define your actionable steps. Our anger comes from not having control on the situation. Sitting there and feeling infuriated is not going to change the situation. The more action we take, the more we will regain control over the situation, the better we will feel.

8. See this as an obstacle to be overcome

As Helen Keller once said,

“Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experiences of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired and success achieved.”

Whatever you’re facing right now, see it as an obstacle to be overcome. In every worthy endeavor, there’ll always be countless obstacles that emerge along the way. These obstacles are what separate the people who make it, and those who don’t. If you’re able to push through and overcome them, you’ll emerge a stronger person than before. It’ll be harder for anything to get you down in the future.

9. Analyze the situation – Focus on actionable steps

In every setback, there are going to be things that can’t be reversed since they have already occurred. You want to focus on things that can still be changed (salvageable) vs. things that have already happened and can’t be changed. The only time the situation changes is when you take steps to improve it. Rather than cry over spilt milk, work through your situation:

  1. What’s the situation?
  2. What’s stressing you about this situation?
  3. What are the next steps that’ll help you resolve them?
  4. Take action on your next steps!

After you have identified your next steps, act on them. The key here is to focus on the actionable steps, not the inactionable steps. It’s about regaining control over the situation through direct action.

10. Identify how it occurred (so it won’t occur again next time)

A lot of times we react to our problems. The problem occurs, and we try to make the best out of what has happened within the context. While developing a healthy coping mechanism is important (which is what the other helping points are on), it’s also equally important, if not more, to understand how the problem arose. This way, you can work on preventing it from taking place next time, vs. dealing reactively with it.

Most of us probably think the problem is outside of our control, but reality is most of the times it’s fully preventable. It’s just a matter of how much responsibility you take over the problem.

For example, for someone who can’t get a cab for work in the morning, he/she may see the problem as a lack of cabs in the country, or bad luck. However, if you trace to the root of the problem, it’s probably more to do with (a) Having unrealistic expectations of the length of time to get a cab. He/she should budget more time for waiting for a cab next time. (b) Oversleeping, because he/she was too tired from working late the previous day. He/she should allocate enough time for rest next time. He/she should also pick up better time management skills, so as to finish work in lesser time.

11. Realize the situation can be a lot worse

No matter how bad the situation is, it can always be much worse. A plus point vs. negative point analysis will help you realize that.

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12. Do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it

No matter how bad your situation may seem, do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it. Life is too beautiful to worry so much over daily issues. Take a step back (#1), give yourself a break if you need to (#6), and do what you can within your means (#9). Everything else will unfold accordingly. Worrying too much about the outcome isn’t going to change things or make your life any better.

13. Pick out the learning points from the encounter

There’s something to learn from every encounter. What have you learned from this situation? What lessons have you taken away?

After you identify your learning points, think about how you’re going to apply them moving forward. With this, you’ve clearly gained something from this encounter. You’ve walked away a stronger, wiser, better person, with more life lessons to draw from in the future.

Get the manifesto version of this article: [Manifesto] What To Do When Things Don’t Go Your Way

Featured photo credit: Alice Donovan Rouse via unsplash.com

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