It’s very common for men and women trying to break a pattern of bad relationships to think that they’ve completely broken the cycle and jump in too fast and too hard into a new relationship only to end up getting hurt or realizing they jumped to conclusions a little too soon.
If you’re working on breaking a bad relationships pattern it’s wise to:
1. Take things slow — very slow.
When you meet a man/woman for the first time, watch out for the traits that have hurt you in the past. Most people are on their best behavior during the first 0-3 months and that is why it’s best to tell yourself that you barely know the person. He/she may be special and it may feel like you were meant to be (and may be you are), but it may also be possible that you are making him/her out to be “better” than he/she really is (fantasy). The more you romanticize, the greater the chance that the reality won’t live up to the fantasy.
I’ve seen too many men and women in this “cloud nine” place and what often happens is that they read too much into the other person’s actions, words etc. They see “love” in everything the other person says and does and as a result fall in love too quickly, only to realize that the person is not who they thought they were.
It is good for you to remember to take things one-step at a time. Take it slow and observe how things are going. If your date doesn’t act in a supportive, friendly, and appreciative way on your first few dates when they should be conscious attempting to make a good impression, imagine what will happen when they are not trying. A woman who is too critical or cold toward customer service person will after date 5 or 6 dates treat you the same way. A man who comes late or isn’t sensitive to your comfort or feelings will in a relationship treat you the same way.
Getting to know someone – faults and all – is the best way to create a fulfilling bond. If you’re not seeing enough good stuff, you can choose to move on or at least be honest with the other person about what you want and need in a partner.
The beauty and the value of getting to know more about someone is getting to know more about yourself. Practice enjoying your own ability to relate and eventually you’ll feel comfortable communicating your thoughts, feelings and experience without fear of how the other person may respond.
2. Be open to the idea that the the person may be gone tomorrow.
You don’t have to wish for it, like it or want it to happen, just be open to it. The more you accept that sometimes relationships just don’t work out, the more you are able to relax and create an environment where the other person enjoys being with you, and wants to stay.
When you are willing to release the resistance that creates fear and the anxiety, you set yourself free from your unrealistic expectations of how things SHOULD BE. You allow yourself to flow with the way things are.
3. Do not ignore early warning signs and red flags.
No relationship worthy of you effort, time or emotions should be solely one person giving and the other taking. If you find that you’re the only one (or at least doing most part of the work) making an effort or altering your lifestyle to have the relationship, these may warning signs of what is to come.
Be open and talk about it with the other person. If possible, akk them to meet you half way in your efforts. If he/she is unwilling to meet you half way, accept that this may not be the right person for you even if he/she says he/she is “in love” with you. It’s not love if there is no mutual reciprocity.
If you decide to keep dating that person it is important that you both agree on what kind of future the two of have in mind. Staying on the same levels is a huge sign that you are with the right person. There can be battles along the way, but the goal is an enduring relationship in which the two of you know each other thoroughly, each gets his/her fair share, and develops mutual trust and respect.
Always remember that there will be times when you feel like you’ve broken the cycle of bad relationships and doing really great, and bam! May be you meet your ex or start another bad relationship. Don’t despair and give up on love. Look back to understand what went wrong, get back on the dating field and using lessons learned try to avoid the same mistakes again.
It helps to have a network of social support to carry you through the tougher days.