If you’ve ever been in a relationship, no doubt at some point you’ve found yourself confused as to whether you should keep it going or end it and move on. And if you are like most people, it can be a really difficult decision. Wrapped up in your own emotional hurricane, torn between your heart saying, “I love him/her” and something else inside saying, “But you are unhappy!”, it’s almost impossible to find the truth.
Instead, we end up waffling in indecision, trying to keep the relationships going, confused and totally handicapped to make the best decision for ourselves.
And who can blame us for this lack of clarity? After all, we’ve been brainwashed for generations – by fairy tales, movies, and bad training – to believe that when you love someone you must stay and fight, forever if need be, right? Wrong! The truth is that love has little to do with the choice to stay or go. Once you love someone you love that person forever, but that doesn't mean that they are the best life partner for you. If you wait around for the day you fall out of love with someone before making the decision to leave, you’ll either cling on forever or drive the relationship to dramatic and devastating proportions to justify ending it – both bad ideas. The truth is that people don’t fall out of love, they fall out of intimacy, trust and respect. There are 3 foundations of a great relationship, and they can be really hard to retrieve when they’re gone.
So the next time you find yourself standing at the crossroads of evaluating if this person is really for you, check in on these five telltale signs that he or she probably isn't the one for you.
Your intuition is trying to get your attention. If you are getting signs or feelings that maybe this isn’t the right relationship for you, it’s probably not. The worst action you can take is to slough off the signs and not give them the credence they warrant. Signs can range from voices in your head (no, you aren’t schizophrenic, it’s your intuition talking!), to feelings in your gut like anxiety and dread or just a sixth sense (you shouldn't be nervous on your wedding day, excited, yes, full of anxiety, no), to visual cues like dreams and visions. Intuition is your best friend and it never lies. So many people could have saved themselves a lot of suffering if they would have just listened to what their intuition was telling them all along.
You’ve bought into The Blip Effect. You get excited about the slightest degree of change in your guy or girl, believing the big change is just around the corner. You use that blip to carry you through the following months when you wait … and wait … and wait for the big change to come. Best case, they stay at the same place the minor blip moved them to. Worst case, they revert back to the way they were. Usually, they land somewhere in between, but always you are left to call on your reserves of hope that one day this person will be the partner you want. He or she hardly ever is. You are on a roller coaster – the Blip Effect – using the highs to sustain yourself, forgetting how crappy you feel the rest of the time. This is not a ride you want to be on.
You talk more about him or her and your relationship than you do about your own life and dreams. People who have great relationships don’t spend very much time talking about them to others. They talk about their lives and their partners, yes, but there is nothing really to say about the relationship, because it works. People in unhappy or mediocre relationships complain, analyze, and seek input on their relationship and their partner from others all the time. They spend more time talking about their mate – what he’s doing, what she’s not – than they do on sharing themselves and their own lives.
Your Happiness Gauge says so. One of the most telling questions you can ask yourself is, “Am I happy?” It’s really simple to answer, yes or no, and it’s hard to lie. If your answer is No or if it goes something like, “Well, sometimes, but then other times, blah blah blah…” something might be up with your choice in a mate. If you are not happy, you owe it to yourself to take three actions: 1. Determine what you really want from your life. 2. Determine what you really want from a partner. 3. Tell your partner what you want first for your life, then from a partner, and then ask “Can you and will you be that partner?” They will tell you the truth. It’s your job to listen.
Your fights are not fair. Yes, all couples fight, but if your fights are of the dramatic and hurtful type, no matter how much your heart says you love him or her, your heart has to love you more. Unfortunately, we can still love someone and be in an abusive or toxic relationship, and verbal, emotional and mental abuse counts. You have to respect yourself enough to demand respect from your partner. And, if you aren’t getting that respect or giving that respect back, there’s something unhealthy going on. You have two choices: fix it with therapy and counseling – together and separate – or end the relationship.
The reason so many of us stay in relationships even though they don’t make our lives better or don’t help us to create the lives we really want is not because we are afraid to face the truth, it’s because we are afraid to face the consequences of the truth – being alone, admitting that we’ve made a mistake, hearing what other people will say or think – so we use love as a reason to stay. Do yourself a favor, and start first with the love you have for ME… listen to what you are saying to yourself, to what you need… and then determine if this relationship and this person is ‘right’ for you.