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13 Harsh Truths You Don’t Want To Admit When You Can’t Get Over The Past Relationship

13 Harsh Truths You Don’t Want To Admit When You Can’t Get Over The Past Relationship

If you’ve ever been in a romantic relationship, chances are you’ve experienced the common side effects of sleepless nights, loss of appetite, and somehow managing to interject the name of that person into every conversation. Ironically, these are some of the same symptoms that are also common after a breakup and can be painful (not to mention extremely trying on your friends) when experienced for a long period of time. If you’re having a hard time getting over a lost love, consider the following harsh truths that may be holding you hostage to your pain.

1. Maybe it is you.

girl standing on log

    It’s human nature to blame outside influences when things don’t go the way we want them to in our relationships. We hear things like, “He was afraid of commitment,” or “She was too controlling.” While blaming your ex can help to satisfy your ego, it saps you of your ability to gain control of the situation. However, when you own your actions and/or expectations of the other person that weren’t met, you gain total control to change your perspective and to make different choices in the future. Try this the next time you’re feeling down: Write down all the ways YOU contributed to the breakup (even if you don’t think you did) and make a decision to, next time, make a different choice. It might not be an easy exercise at first, but it’s a great way to shift the power back into your hands.

    2. You didn’t fulfill his or her needs.

    Tony Robbins uses Human Needs Psychology to teach millions of people how to have successful relationships. This theory suggests that though we all have these six human needs — certainty, variety, significance, love/connection, growth, and contribution — we each rank them differently and seek to have them fulfilled in different ways. Usually in the beginning of relationships we all do a pretty good job of fulfilling the needs of our partner because most of us are concerned with what we can give to the person instead of what we can get. But unless we continue to meet our partner’s needs in the way they want them to be met, they’re liable to move their attention off of you in the way that you would want. Here’s the harsh truth: you didn’t meet your partner’s needs in the way they needed them to be met. The “bright” side? They probably didn’t meet your needs either.

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    3. A better match exists for you.

    There are over 7.2 billion people in the world; you’ve just broken up with one of them. And if you’re in the U.S., there are about 96 million people who are single and over the age of 18. I know it might be hard to believe that there could be even a slight possibility that you will ever find another mate or even (could it be?) a better match, but it’s true — just know that you’re someone’s better match, too!

    4. You saw signs and ignored them.

    They say hindsight is 20/20. That’s because usually at the end of a broken relationship we can see all the evidence from along the way that this one wasn’t going to last. Finally, you can recognize their behavior for what it really was — especially after you’ve put so much time and energy into making it work. Do yourself a favor: The next time you see signs on the road of love that lead you to question your relationship, don’t look away.

    5. You believed you would end up with your first love.

    boy-girl kiss on cheek

      Most of us are introduced to the fantasy of love long before we fall in love for the first time ourselves. These impressions are strong in our expectations of living happily ever after, and when we finally find that object of our affection, it can be an overwhelming and profound experience. Sometimes when our first loves ends, it can feel like our whole world is ending too. Research at Stony Brook University revealed that the anguish of romantic rejection creates the same cravings as being on cocaine. No wonder you may feel like you’re going through withdrawal; and every recovering addict needs support during recovery. Find a confidant or support group to talk to; better yet, read this to learn eight things to do when getting over a hurtful relationship.

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      6. You looked to him/her for validation.

      It happens to the best of us: One day you’re a happily independent-thinking person; the next you find yourself crying in a dejected ball on the floor in the bedroom corner. What will you do, and what’s to become of you now? But what if you no longer needed the approval of your ex and, instead, were totally confident in your own skin? It’s hard when you’ve invested so much time and energy into a relationship only to see it end. But the harsh truth is this: you are enough and you don’t need another person’s affection to prove this. If you can truly get this one concept, you’ll be so irresistible, you’ll barely keep from dating yourself.

      7. He/She’s just not that into you (and that’s OK).

      We all have our preferences for different things (food, style, vacation spots, etc.). And if you’re honest, there are probably several people you’d prefer to spend your Saturday night with over others. This doesn’t automatically make those others undesirable people, does it? Of course not. Well, the same goes for you. Just because you’re not one person’s preference doesn’t mean a thing about you; it just speaks to their preference. You, on the other hand, have plenty of fans. Why not give one of them a call and meet for coffee this week? You may be glad you did.

      8. You’ve romanticized the whole thing.

      romanticize; couple on pier

        It’s easy to remember only the good times when a relationship ends, but chances are you can identify plenty of things that weren’t ideal. If you find yourself only able to remember the good times, have a friend remind you of the challenges or complaints you had while you were together. Write these things down and then ask yourself these questions to snap yourself back to reality.

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        9. You want what you can’t have.

        If this one applies to you, chances are the person either a.) belongs to someone else, b.) is too young or too old for you, c.) lives in another state, country, or region or d.) has taken a vow of celibacy. Whatever the reason, the fact is they’re not available, and the more you focus on this, the more miserable you’ll be. Do yourself a favor: Shift your attention to what you can have, and go buy yourself your favorite dessert to take your mind off of things. (Hey, it always works for me.)

        10. You took them for granted.

        This is a tough one. If you believe that you let go of someone you truly cared about but took for granted, you might be having the worst reaction of all because, in your mind, if you had done things differently, you would be together today. Take heart: we all make mistakes. But if we’re wise we call them “learning experiences” and make sure we do things differently the next time around.

        11. Your beliefs are not necessarily the truth.

        We all believe something; some of us believe in angels, some of us believe in big business, and some of us believe in the Tooth Fairy. The thing to remember is that belief in itself is neither good or bad. So if you believe that you and your lost love were meant to be together and it’s causing you pain, recognize that you can choose to have a different belief. What if, for example, you believed that this relationship was the perfect set-up for the ultimate relationship on its way to you? Oh, the possibilities when you believe!

        12.You’re holding yourself back from happiness.

        You deserve every happiness that life has to offer. The fact that you’re hurting so badly only proves that you don’t feel the way you know you’re supposed to feel, which is not crummy. Try this: recall a time when you were extremely happy or at peace before this person came into your life. What were you focused on? What activities were you involved in? What contribution were you making to the world? Answer these questions, and you’ve got a blueprint for getting your groove back and moving into happy. Or try something new that you’ve always wanted to do and read this to perk yourself back up.

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        13. Everything will be OK.

        Everything will be OK

          Believe it or not, the earth won’t stop spinning on it’s axis, your heart won’t stop beating, and you will be OK. If you allow it to, time can be your best friend when you’re getting over a relationship. Spend some much-deserved time loving yourself and appreciating all of the good things in your life right now. Make a list and rehearse it each time your default turns to thoughts of your ex, or put yourself in the space of others who are less fortunate than you to give yourself some perspective on how good your life really is. The truth is you’re not the first person to have a hard time getting over a past relationship, and you won’t be the last. Just remember to breathe; everything will be OK.

          Featured photo credit: Logan Adermatt via unsplash.com

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          Last Updated on April 6, 2020

          10 Powerful Ways to Influence People Positively

          10 Powerful Ways to Influence People Positively

          Most discussions on positively influencing others eventually touch on Dale Carnegie’s seminal work, How to Win Friends and Influence People. Written more than 83 years ago, the book touches on a core component of human interaction, building strong relationships. It is no wonder why.

          Everything that we do hinges on our ability to connect with others and formulate deep relationships. You cannot sell a house, buy a house, advance in most careers, sell a product, pitch a story, teach a course, etc. without building healthy relationships. Managers get the best results from their teams, not through brute force, but to careful appeals to their sensibilities, occasional withdrawals from the reservoir of respect they’ve built. Using these tactics, they can influence others to excellence, to productivity, and to success.

          Carnegie’s book is great. Of course, there are other resources too. Most of us have someone in our lives who positively influences us. The truth is positively influencing people is about centering the humanity of others. Chances are, you know someone who is really good at making others feel like stars. They can get you to do things that the average person cannot. Where the requests of others sound like fingernails on a chalkboard, the request from this special person sounds like music to your ears. You’re delighted to not only listen but also to oblige.

          So how to influence people in a positive way? Read on for tips.

          1. Be Authentic

          To influence people in a positive way, be authentic. Rather than being a carbon copy of someone else’s version of authenticity, uncover what it is that makes you unique.

          Discover your unique take on an issue and then live up to and honor that. Once of the reasons social media influencers are so powerful is that they have carved out a niche for themselves or taken a common issue and approached it from a novel or uncommon way. People instinctually appreciate people whose public persona matches their private values.

          Contradictions bother us because we crave stability. When someone professes to be one way, but lives contrary to that profession, it signals that they are confused or untrustworthy and thereby, inauthentic. Neither of these combinations bode well for positively influencing others.

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          2. Listen

          Growing up, my father would tell me to listen to what others said. He told me if I listened carefully, I would know all I needed to know about a person’s character, desires and needs.

          To positively influence others, you must listen to what is spoken and what is left unsaid. Therein lies the explanation for what people need in order to feel validated, supported and seen. If a person feels they are invisible, and unseen by their superiors, they are less likely to be positively influenced by that person.

          Listening meets a person’s primary need of validation and acceptance.

          Take a look at this guide on how to be a better listener: How to Practice Active Listening (A Step-By-Step Guide)

          3. Become an Expert

          Most people are predisposed to listen to, if not respect, authority. If you want to positively influence others, become an authority in the area in which you seek to lead others. Research and read everything you can about the given topic, and then look for opportunities to put your education into practice.

          You can argue over opinions. You cannot argue, or it is unwise to argue, over facts and experts come with facts.

          4. Lead with Story

          From years of working in the public relations space, I know that personal narratives, testimonials and impact stories are incredibly powerful. But I never cease to be amazed with how effective a well-timed and told story can be.

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          If you want to influence people, learn to tell stories. Your stories should be related to the issue or concept you are discussing. They should be an analogy or metaphor that explains your topic in ordinary terms and in vivid detail. To learn more about how to tell powerful stories, and the ethics of storytelling, take a look at this article: How To Tell An Interesting Story In 4 Simple Steps

          5. Lead by Example

          It is incredibly inspiring to watch passionate, talented people at work or play. One of the reasons a person who is not an athlete can be in awe of athletic prowess is because human nature appreciates the extraordinary. When we watch the Olympics, Olympic trials, gymnastic competitions, ice skating, and other competitive sports, we can recognize the effort of people who day in and day out give their all. C

          ase in point: Simone Biles. The gymnast extraordinaire won her 6TH all-around title at the U.S. Gymnastics Championships after doing a triple double. She was the first woman to do so. Watching her gave me chills. Even non-gymnasts and non-competitive athletes can appreciate the talent required to pull off such a remarkable feat.

          We celebrate remarkable accomplishments and believe that their example is proof that we too can accomplish something great, even if it isn’t qualifying for the Olympics. To influence people in a positive way, we must lead by example, lead with intention and execute with excellence.

          6. Catch People Doing Good

          A powerful way to influence people in a positive way is to catch people doing good. Instead of looking for problems, look for successes. Look for often overlooked, but critically important things that your peers, subordinates and managers do that make the work more effective and more enjoyable.

          Once you catch people doing good, name and notice their contributions.

          7. Be Effusive with Praise

          It did not take me long to notice a remarkable trait of a former boss. He not only began and ended meetings with praise, but he peppered praise throughout the entire meeting. He found a way to celebrate the unique attributes and skills of his team members. He was able to quickly and accurately assess what people were doing well and then let them and their colleagues know.

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          Meetings were not just an occasion to go through a “To Do” list, they were opportunities to celebrate accomplishments, no matter how small they are.

          8. Be Kind Rather Than Right

          I am going to level with you; this one is tough. It is easy to get caught up in a cycle of proving oneself. For people who lack confidence, or people who prioritize the opinions of others, being right is important. The validation that comes with being perceived as “right” feeds one’s ego. But in the quest to be “right,” we can hurt other people. Once we’ve hurt someone by being unkind, it is much harder to get them to listen to what we’re trying to influence them to do.

          The antidote to influencing others via bullying is to prioritize kindness above rightness. You can be kind and still stand firm in your position. For instance, many people think that they need others to validate their experience. If a person does not see the situation you experienced in the way you see it, you get upset. But your experience is your experience.

          If you and your friends go out to eat and you get food poisoning, you do not need your friends to agree that the food served at the restaurant was problematic for you. Your own experience of getting food poisoning is all the validation you need. Therefore, taking time to be right is essentially wasted and, if you were unkind in seeking validation for your food-poison experience, now you’ve really lost points.

          9. Understand a Person’s Logical, Emotional and Cooperative Needs

          The Center for Creative Leadership has argued that the best way to influence others is to appeal to their logical, emotional and cooperative needs. Their logical need is their rational and educational need. Their emotional need is the information that touches them in a deeply personal manner. The cooperative need is understanding the level of cooperation various individuals need and then appropriately offering it.

          The trick with this system is to understand that different people need different things. For some people, a strong emotional appeal will outweigh logical explanations. For others, having an opportunity to collaborate will override emotional connection.

          If you know your audience, you will know what they need in order to be positively influenced. If you have limited information about the people whom you are attempting to influence, you will be ineffective.

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          10. Understand Your Lane

          If you want to positively influence others, operate from your sphere of influence. Operate from your place of expertise. Leave everything else to others. Gone are the days when being a jack of all trades is celebrated.

          Most people appreciate brands that understand their target audience and then deliver on what that audience wants. When you focus on what you are uniquely gifted and qualified to do, and then offer that gift to the people who need it, you are likely more effective. This effectiveness is attractive.

          You cannot positively influence others if you are more preoccupied by what others do well versus what you do well.

          Final Thoughts

          Influencing people is about centering your humanity. If you want to influence others positively, focus on the way you communicate and improve the relationship with yourself first.

          It’s hard to influence others if you’re still trying to figure out how to communicate with yourself.

          More Tips About Making Influence

          Featured photo credit: Wonderlane via unsplash.com

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