When the Stakes are High
“We accept the love we believe we deserve”
Perks of Being a Wallflower
I think there’s a lack of real content in the world right now where we actually talk about our problems in an open and vulnerable way. Not in an “I hate my life and want to drag everyone around me down way” because no one wants to be around that person and their negative energy. But I do think we are missing connecting with each other by not sharing experiences that, although not glamorous or easy to talk about, shape us and mold us into who we are. And I don’t really buy into this “be yourself” business because I am always trying to be better than myself. And I think it’s brave because in a world of filters it’s unfiltered. So while this style of writing may not be for everyone, I hope that my transparency can help someone.
And if that someone is you, I’m so glad you’re here.
Today I wanted to write about relationships and finding the right person. Disclaimer: I don’t believe in soul mates. But I do think in life you become acquainted with people that you may not want to do life without and I think when you find that you’re onto something great. I also don’t believe relationships that didn’t “work out” are for nothing. I mean you might look back and cringe a little but hopefully you can be better because of them–not bitter or jaded.
The right person is the person that chooses you not the person that just has all the qualities you like. I have in the past and have seen so many women cling to someone who has all of the qualities they want, except one of the most important factors is missing and it may be that that person does not choose them in return. And that’s okay! Be grateful you met someone who has those qualities and see it as a positive affirmation that you can not only find someone with those qualities again, but it will be so much better because they are choosing you in return. Nothing compares to the feeling of knowing you are both each other’s first choice.
Don’t be afraid to spend time with yourself and get to know yourself and like yourself because if you can’t do those things then it will be really hard for you to let others do them. Sometimes I get in my car and I just drive late at night. Sometimes I go on walks around the monuments to be alone with my thoughts or to blast my crappy music no one can judge me for. Or to sing off key.
I get it. When the stakes are high in love, which they almost always are, we get nervous.
When we don’t like someone it is so much easier to be charismatic and funny and we let loose. When we do like someone all of that can so easily go out the window. It’s like a job interview for your dream job. You want to badly for them to like you to sell yourself because you actually care about the outcome and so you’re nervous as hell and so scared that you may not be the one they choose. And if you’re not, that’s okay. One of the most important lessons I have learned is to try your hardest to get rid of outcome dependency.
As a kid, I never wanted to stir the pot. I never wanted to be someone who was disagreeable and was always trying to make myself small and be who others wanted me to be. I worked hard to make sure what I was feeling in my heart would not show on my face. Unfortunately, that became something that carried over to my relationships as I became older and became more self-aware. It is hard to be vulnerable and brave instead of careful and calculated. I’ve done a lot of work on myself to get past that point. And it’s so damn hard! But as you get older you become more self-aware and with that comes accountability for owning your behavior, not excuses. And as I have worked on being more messy and unfiltered I have found genuine confidence and self-acceptance. And my hope for any girl (or guy!) reading this today is to encourage you to not accept bad behavior from yourself or others and that begins with loving yourself.
Bad behavior may just mean you’re not in a place right now where you can give someone the best of you and so you constantly take it out on them. Brave behavior is being honest enough to take personal accountability for your emotions and how you react and to honestly assess yourself and do what you need to do until you’re ready to give someone the best you have. And that may very well include doing that on your own.
Bad behavior from the person you are dating may just mean you’re sharing the best of yourself with someone who never does what they say they are going to do or someone who never goes the extra mile for you like you do for them. Or they simply don’t see the value in who you are. Brave behavior is walking away from anything or anyone that doesn’t add value to your life even if it means you walk solo for a while.
More often than not in love, things will not play out how you were hoping. But you have to stop protecting yourself from the fear of falling. Don’t stop being an optimist. Don’t stop getting to know people and don’t for a minute question your worth. Don’t for a minute believe you are damaged goods if you’ve been hurt before but also don’t accept mediocrity from yourself or others.
I always tell my girlfriends the best thing you can do for yourself whether single or in a relationship is to invest in yourself. Be curious. Read some books. Listen to inspiring music, talks, or podcasts. Go out to eat and get a table for 1. Develop a skill and discover your talents. Spend time getting to know yourself and start liking that person so someone else can add even more value to an already incredible life.
The anti-cover girl