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your greatest lessons learned in your healing, however painful...


canali
How to grow Jade Plant from a broke...
How to grow Jade Plant from a broken stem? 5 (five) useful tips of the year!

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For me there have been many....this whole process since Sept last year when we split has been akin to a snake shedding its skin: a slow and steady process...also quite painful at times of course (but then again, pain, if embraced properly is really the only way we do grow from a deeper place).

 

FACING MY ADDICTIONS:

drank wayyy too much with her (we both loved our wine and beer too much/wine travels etc...but I have not had a drop since Oct 15th; and to be honest I don't really miss it...food is a more significant emotional addiction I have to be aware of, however....when reading a 'People' special on individuals who have successfully lost weight, one quote really stood out so I'll share it here:

''The taste of the BAIT is not worth the price of the HOOK.'' (pretty good IMO)

 

FACING MY FEARS:

Despite being gregarious/affable, approaching 'groups' of people to intermesh and extend my social circle was a toughie....now I yet to just look at 'groups' as comprised of individuals more or less fundamentally just like me: they want love and attention and to feel accepted.

(so in this manner, I'm learning more to give love first and be more accepting/less judgemental)..

 

Realizing that many ''fears'' are unimagined... once ''challenged/checked out'' they're mere wasters of energy.

 

--also learning a falsehood that I couldn't be as happy without her as I was with her.

 

In short, trying to more quickly take on life's challenges (fears again) before they snowball into something bigger.

 

DEALING WITH MY EMOTIONS BETTER:

my ex had boundary issues with her teenaged daughter who could be quite verbally abusive and act out (hey my first time with single mom and a teen...and what a handful at times)...and I held in my anger instead of being diplomatic or using humour ...or spending time alone with her....could have used more EMPATHY too (the many loving kindness readings/mediation, prayer, affirmations all help, too...much better than passive aggressive behaviours!)

Not dealing with my anger ended up blocking my love both for her and between us, too, in the end, sadly...this last one I feel badly still about.

 

LEARNING THAT I CAN ONLY EXERT SO MUCH INFLUENCE:

I have realized, too, that while I wanted to work on things, ultimately she didn't ....so to acknowledge that we ALL have our past baggage/filters/limits that can get in the way...you can only be so responsible for what goes right and equally for what goes wrong....and so maybe can cut HER some slack too as she is human with her own fears and weaknesses and filters.

 

WHO ARE YOU? WHO AM I? (BEFORE WE GET SERIOUS):

Also the importance of taking my time getting to know someone before I get serious...and to ask questions: is it LUST or LONELINESS as the impetus here (funny but while I do miss some tail, I want not a lover right now but more friends)...and to be clearer about who I am and what i want

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WHAT IS HERE & REAL TODAY MAY NOT BE TOMORROW...AND TO TRY TO BE MORE OK/ADAPTABLE WITH SUCH:

have learned that what exists NOW may not hold up in the future...change happens all the time...to give up terms like 'soulmate' and 'forever' and just try to 'flow' more.

Lovers may come and go but self love and love for life in general always has to be in the picture.

 

LEARNING TO BE MORE SELF LOVING...AND FINDING HOW MUCH POWER IS IN THE CHOICES I MAKE & IN THE PLACES I PARK MY BRAIN AND EMOTIONS: The choices & thoughts that I engage in have really can empower me or not. Since taking up a recent spate of activities (tennis lessons, joining both a kayaking & mtn biking club and going out more for meetups) I realize I'm now getting excited again about the future due to a redirection of my thoughts.

 

Reading alot of more positive resiliency building literature/blogs (as listed and at bottom) also has been 'emotionally muscle enhancing, too....I realize that a growing part of me wants to embrace life and people again...and ultimately is becoming happier/more content/confident....step by step.

 

More specifically, I do enjoy link removed (see ''Say Yes'') for inspiration (and have one of her books from the library), among other positive sites/reads...Rhonda Britten saw, for example, (while as a young girl) her father murder her mother and then take his own life...right in front of her...so talk about developing resiliency skills...this is an area we all could learn more of folks: let's face it: great role models displaying such are not as plentiful as those displaying self harming behaviours right?

 

LEARNING PERSPECTIVE/GRATITUDE/DIVERSITY:

Yeah so my 'ex' dumped me....but I'm still alive...I'm still employed..I have wonderful healing nature all around me here in gorgeous BC. I'm still have my health...live in a 1st world country...having some gratitude for the many blessings that I DO have..... I'm getting more involved NOW than when I was with her (which I should have done anyway).

 

And I am also finding out more about the important principle of diversity: if you overinvest in a person, ideology, thing (or whatever) and it goes t*ts up, then don't go crying when you are emotionally crashing and burning (that was me largely!)....Thus next time (as i'm doing now) by being more diversified socially, emotionally (etc) I'll hopefully be in a stronger, more resilient place should my gig fall apart.

 

Other links/blogs (do a search for other topics) I like and I hope can help you too in your own journey:

 

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if you pull up the pdf, page 6 shows the table of contents.

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I am responsible for my own happiness. Whenever I am at odd with someone else I am really at odds with myself. If I feel I am being mistreated it is nobody's responsibility but mine to stop volunteering for it. Some people are just plain selfish, it's not a handicap, it's a character defect. People who are selfish will lie, cheat, and steal to get what they think they deserve at the expense of others and they are to be avoided at all costs. Some of the nicest people in the world are just biding their time to take advantage of you later after you've grown to trust them. Good guys finish with a smile on their faces, bad guys end up old and lonely. Some of the nicest people in the world are also the simplest. Everybody has an agenda, but some people believe it's important to play fair. Love will always save the day, but not necessarily from the direction we want. Most things are none of my business, but finding out someone's true character before committing to them is a darn fine idea. It's embarrassing to go in front of a judge to be divorced from the same man twice. Some people should avoid marriage (like me). lol

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The greatest lesson ive learnt is to love myself more than anybody else!

 

This is me too....

 

I am responsible for my own happiness. Whenever I am at odd with someone else I am really at odds with myself. If I feel I am being mistreated it is nobody's responsibility but mine to stop volunteering for it. Some people are just plain selfish, it's not a handicap, it's a character defect. People who are selfish will lie, cheat, and steal to get what they think they deserve at the expense of others and they are to be avoided at all costs. Some of the nicest people in the world are just biding their time to take advantage of you later after you've grown to trust them. Good guys finish with a smile on their faces, bad guys end up old and lonely. Some of the nicest people in the world are also the simplest. Everybody has an agenda, but some people believe it's important to play fair. Love will always save the day, but not necessarily from the direction we want. Most things are none of my business, but finding out someone's true character before committing to them is a darn fine idea. It's embarrassing to go in front of a judge to be divorced from the same man twice. Some people should avoid marriage (like me). lol

 

Excellent words of wisdom!

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This is an EXCELLENT POST, Canali...one of your many wise contributions!

 

I learned the same thing as you guys--mostly learning to be responsible for my own happiness. I did expect other people to validate me and I'd let my feelings be hurt if they didn't. Now I know that if I want something, I need to take action, not feel sorry for myself. Let's see if I can think of anything else I learned...

 

1. Staying in the present is the best way to stop feeling anxious. --If I think too much about the past, I feel nostaglic and long too much for what WAS instead of making the most of what I have now. If I think too much into the future, I tend to judge myself and stress myself out because I don't know how I'm going to have money or a future right now. So instead of thinking like that, I just take positive steps in the right direction and hope I can handle things as they come up...and feel more confident that I will deal with each thing as I come to it.

 

2. Love is NOT a feeling, it's an action based on good will.--This is something I read about before my break-up but never really understood it. Now I realize that love is not about what my partner can do to make me feel loved and accepted and validated, but is more about ME and MY ability to honor another person. I am loving my ex more NOW by leaving him alone so he can get his life together. I would not be showing love by begging him to come back---that would be selfish on my part. Love is not what feels good for me, but what is best.

 

3. A person needs to have their own life, no matter how close of friends they are with their partner.---I depended too much on my ex to define me. I did have my own life to an extent, but it wasn't what it could have been. I needed to develop more of my interests and should have kept growing instead of becoming stagnant. Next time, I will make sure to stay fresh and continue learning and moving, yet I can still be close to a partner.

 

4. I am a very picky person!--I never realized just how picky I was. My ex said I was stubborn and I figured he was just projecting his own stubborness (partly true). But even though I'm not judgmental IN GENERAL, I am VERY picky about the kind of person I want to be in a relationship with. I almost always find a reason not to try someone. I think I need to explore why. I am also a very picky eater.

 

5. The more you judge other people, the harder you are on yourself.---I find that the most unhappy people are the most judgmental. When you're constantly finding fault and pain in everything, it's because you find fault and pain in yourself. In order to forgive yourself, you have to forgive other people...and vice-versa. You can't "let go" unless you can forgive. Resentment==holding on to pain.

 

6. YOU have to structure your life. You don't need permission.---I realize that I kind of expected everyone else to plan my life--my parents, my friends, my ex...but that is NOT taking responsibility for me. No one else is going to live with my decisions so it's up to me to decide what I have to do. I don't need to ask, or take things to heart. I need to think about what is best for me.

 

7. I am co-dependent. My whole family has a way of making its members feel guilty and wrong for thinking independently. I honestly think my mom is Borderline. If I don't pay enough attention to her, she sighs really loudly, slams things down on the table, or makes indirect cracks about my selfishness. She used to threaten to kill herself if I wouldn't do what she wanted me to do. My dad is similar. I used to feel this nagging, stressful feeling, like I'd have to always be a "good girl" to not upset the parents. I was very "goody goody" but it never felt like enough. Even though I'm 28 years old, my mom still gets angry when I want to go out on the weekend. This is really shameful for me. I do what I want, but I have this sense of guilt. She makes me feel like I'm being irresponsible and I should be spending time with her, but when I AM with her, she complains about how horrible life is and how she doesn't want to do anything. I feel sick around them but I don't really have anyone else to count on. It's like I'm stuck.

 

8. When I feel empty, it's because I can't accept the moment or am not being creative enough, it's not because of my ex.---Yes, I do miss my ex, but feeling empty is not due to him. When I make a list of things to do, I can enjoy them. If I don't find meaning in them, it's because I am expecting too much. Not everything can be a ton of fun all the time. The key is to have faith that I will find meaning in something shortly and just enjoy what I'm doing for the time being.

 

9. Jesus is Lord. That should have been the firs thing I learned. I now understand the meaning of faith and how rules and judgments are the opposite of love and trust.

 

10. Infatuation is not love. There is only ONE love, forget Robert Sternberg! I have loved several people and it does not matter in which way. Infatuation is nice and I hope to feel it again but it's not LOVE. As long as I have love, it can be from a friend, family member, partner whatever. I CAN live without infatuation. It kind of sucks, but it's much better than living without love. AND I can still love my ex even though I'm moving on. Loving him is a choice and he was a big part of my life for so long. Just because I don't see or talk to him doesn't mean there is no love there. And he most likely loves me too. In fact, he could probably be friends with me if there were no feelings there, but the fact that he can't right now does indicate that he does deeply care.

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Thanks !

I especially like your "5 ...judging...huge with me...mindfulness helps a lot...

 

One technique I liked from Dr Richard Carsons books was the "catch and let go" approach to troubling or unproductive thoughts using mindfulness.

 

Judging gets in the way so much and is so fear based IMO....loving kindness meditations also helped me to pay attention to these filters. Judging makes you focus too much on your differences ie "me vs them"...loving kindness on the other hand more on what draws you closer together in your basic humanity....really has helped to open me up.

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1. Love is a choice not a feeling

2. We make our own choices to be unhapy or happy......our partner has no influence in this.

3. I need to set and implement boundaries in my relationships

4. abandonment and engulfment is very real and very difficult to deal with

5. Stay in the present moment

6. Our partners mirror our own emotional state.......if we are emotionally unavailable, we will attract and be attracted to emotionally unavailable partners.

7. i mistaken need with love to often

8. Never blame anyone but myself for the things i am in control of. If there are issues, deal with them instead of sweeping them under the carpet

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1. You can't expect others to make you happy, that's your own responsibility.

 

2. You can't build your life around others.

 

These above two are odd for me, because - while I was very shy and insecure in all aspects of my life when I was younger - today I'm a strong, outgoing, independent woman in my professional as well as in the majority of my personal life. Yet still, when I get in a relationship I tend to get weak and insecure, and try too hard to please them. Too many body hang-ups still, I think, as well as too many old-school patriarchal notions of men's and women's roles in relationships left over from my upbringing.

 

3. You can't control others, whether through kindness (my usual method) or direct methods. The responsibility for their actions and choices is ultimately theirs, and there is only so much influence that you can have over them.

 

4. You can't let others control you, either!

 

5. People will hurt you and lie to you sometimes, and there's little you can do to prevent it if they're determined to do so (see #3). Not all people in the world are generally good, and not all generally good people are 100% good. Some people make mistakes and do stupid things, while others are just plain selfish and inconsiderate. That doesn't mean it's your fault.

 

6. Your self-worth is not determined by whether or not you have a partner, nor by who that partner is when you have one.

 

I'm sure there are many more, but those are a few that immediately come to mind.

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Maybe not made explicit in my thoughts but to "strive to be as fulfilled and happy as best I can regardless of whether I am with someone or not."

 

Hugs to all as we all continue to heal & open ourselves up towards a place of renewed love hope optimism and strength.

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to add to the many beautiful life lessons already mentioned:

 

believe in yourself.

 

vengefulness and spite is futile and a waste of emotional energy. l

 

learn from your mistakes. forgive yourself for having made them.

 

the more positive energy you release into this world, the more happiness will come to you.

 

never give up. there will always be struggles in life, so don't live your life in fear. it's how you deal with them that makes you who you are.

 

there is so much more to life than being in a relationship, so don't dwell on having lost one or not being in one. experience all those other things and your life will be full. it's amazing how things will fall into place when you least expect it.

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I learned that even though i was knocked down further then id ever been and couldnt see a way out, that i was way stronger then i thought and far more resourceful then i thought .

 

things that would have upset me before, no longer do. i aqlso learned that I am in charge of my life and even though others may upset , disappoint or let me down. I have the abilty and the power within me to take actions which suit me.

 

I cant control others, but i sure can control myself.

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love this thread, thanks canali and to the rest of you for your thoughts.. many of you have articulated similar lessons i have learned in the last few painful months.

 

these are four main lessons for me:

 

1. fear within a relationship does nothing for creating intimacy or honest, open communication... and leads to controlling behaviors, denial and shaming/guilt.

 

2. life is this very moment, not what is happening tomorrow or a year from now.

 

3. the more love, gentleness and compassion you have for yourself, the more you will have for your partner and others in your life.

 

4. my listening skills need much improvement!

 

peace

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Thanks for so many wonderful and insightful replies.

 

Just came back from a mtn bike ride with a group that I joined...was really missing my ex at times remembering all the outdoors stuff we would do together....so to get some rational intervention I started being mindful of my thoughts and then how it felt in my body (to refocus and try to get out of just thinking mode).

 

So important when emotionally vulnerable to pay attention to our inner tapes isn't it? I had to remember that I also gave her a lot of great times being as open minded as I am to trying new things ...so I had to bring it back to me giving myself credit for at least trying to "walk the walk" and get out there...that I'm trying to move on by reconnecting to life again...

 

I had to remember the times when we were together that were not always good or warm or memorable either too ...

 

Also just had to tell myself these sad feelings I have are temporary will pass...that I just have to keep doing what I'm doing...that perhaps others in the crowd I was with also had their own heartaches and loneliness and whatever emotional battles so not to feel isolated and alone.

 

So just got back home felt a flood of emotions and had a little cry...just to let the pressure off my heart...feeling better already.

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This time around, I think I finally started learning more about what I want in a relationship, since this 5 year one was the longest I've ever had. It made it past infatuation, made it past the hanging out together stage, and made it through serious life crises.

 

I learned I really really want to be with someone close to my own age. I'm happier with shared experiences and cultural references and the like.

 

I definitely need someone who shares some of my interests. Opposites attract is not a good idea for me.

 

I think I need a more alpha male type than I have been dating - too many passive aggressive control freaks. I think a guy with his own life and a good amount of confidence and goal setting would not tend to have this need to control me, and would be better equipped to relate to me as an equal partner.

 

Also do better with someone professional and with a good successful career, although with a good amount of "after school activities" so to speak.

 

For me... don't cave in and put up with ill treatment just because I love someone. It doesn't help, it doesn't change things, and it makes me feel miserable in all areas of my life.

 

Also don't be someone I'm not, even on occasion, just to make the guy feel better. If we can't be ourselves when we are together, it's a poor match.

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I learned:

 

- I am happier now

- Thatthe ex will make excuses to come back once they find the grass is not that green on the other side...a pathetic human behavior...

- That I should learn to trust my gut feeling and other senses more often...](*,)

 

- Lastly, I think I am clearer on what type of person I don't want

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