Life of Polly

5 Tips on Learning to Love Again

New relationships can frequently feel scary and confusing. Letting go of the past and moving forward without unhealthy baggage and character traits can take a lot of practice and a lot of work. That’s okay! Becoming a better person for your new partner is a beautiful thing to focus on if you want to create a stable relationship with this person. The tips listed below are based upon my own experience and things I have seen work for others as well. 

When you are just getting to know someone, there may be things you are afraid to open up and talk about, and there are habits and patterns that need to be broken to honor your new respectable partner. There may be little things that you have been so used to doing in your day to day life you may not even notice that may not sit well with the person you’re now trying to build a healthy relationship with. Some people refuse to change certain things they’ve always done even though it could bother the new person in their life, and that can frequently cause a lot of friction and tension in your relationship. 

If you want to have a healthy relationship you need to be open about what makes you tick, what makes you feel safe and comfortable, what makes you feel supported and loved, what motivates you, and what you expect from your partner. The two of you must reciprocate each other’s needs and communicate so you can build a strong foundation in your relationship where there are no missing links or doubt where you go to sleep at night wondering about how the other person feels or what they want. 

The truth is that we have all been hurt in some way in past relationships and far too many times we tend to drag all that weight and pain into our new connections, which causes us to project distrust, anger, or unhappiness onto this new person who deserves a fair chance to share genuine love and affection with you. When you drag past hurt and trauma into new relationships, we stomp on the opportunity to have real joy, peace, and commitment. It is so important that after you go through a breakup with someone, you take time to heal and work on yourself first, before leaping into something that you may not be quite ready for. 

  • Identify your love patterns by talking to a good therapist or coach who can help get perspective on why your past relationships did not work out. Look closer at the type of people you attract and focus on breaking out of toxic love paradigms.
  • Get outside and exercise rather than being cooped up inside and ignoring your need for progress. If you are not growing and learning, then what are you doing?
  • Remind yourself that you are loveable, and even though you have had your heart smashed on the floor and made a fool all around town, you are someone who can bounce back from the pain and is available at any and every moment to accept unselfish, unconditional, and meaningful love.
  • Pick up a new hobby that you’ve thought about trying but just haven’t ever gotten around to it. Here are a few ideas: Gardening, Photography, Hiking, Painting, Weight Lifting, Boxing, Dancing, Yoga, Basketball, Golf, Running, Volunteering in the community, Sewing, Blogging, Selling things on eBay, or Gaming.
  • Begin meditating once a day to build a secure connection with your intuition. Usually, when something FEELS off, it is, but if our intuition isn’t healthy, we may miss out on some vital signals that could potentially keep us from danger. 
  • Avoid becoming sexually active until you are mentally and emotionally healthy again and feel confident that you can handle the bond that is created after having sex. This typically goes for women, due to the hormones released during sex. The name of his hormone is called “Oxytocin,” and it is the same hormone that is released while a mother is nursing. Many women swear they can have casual sex, but end up with their heartbroken because they have bonded themselves with a man who was unwilling to commit. 

After you have taken time to heal from your last serious relationship and meet someone who seems to be a suitable candidate, its time to look at ways you can build a dependable and flourishing relationship with this new individual. 

  1. Ask questions about their lives that help you better understand why they are the way they are. Find out where there grew up, what their childhood was like, what their relationship with their family is like, what they had in mind for the last 5-10 years that maybe didn’t go the way they planned, if they are religious, if they want children one day, if they want to get married one day, what their learning style is, what their love language is, what their ideal nights and weekends look like, if they were ever married or engaged, if they are currently married or engaged, if they currently have someone out there who thinks they are this person’s boyfriend or girlfriend, what their thoughts on monogamy are, if they are currently in any debt or experiencing financial stress, if they currently have a job, if they went to college and what they studied, their favorite climate to vacation in, and what their goals are for the future. 
  2. Practice active listening without distractions. This means not looking at your phone while they are talking but rather making eye contact with them so you can give them your undivided attention, making them feel heard and giving you the opportunity to learn more about this new person in your life. During the time you’re getting to know this person, if possible, silence your phone or put it on Airplane mode while they are around so that you will not be tempted to answer phone calls, emails, text messages, or scroll social media for the simple fact that most people consider this type of behavior rude and off-putting.
  3. Have the courage to open your heart to trust this person while taking into account any warning signs, background checks, and weird vibes. Go into the relationship with an open heart and an open mind. In order to build a steady and healthy relationship, you can’t constantly accuse them of lying or cheating at the time. Your new lover is not your ex, so do not treat them as so. Show some respect. If a problem or suspicion arises, discuss your concern with them and go from there.
  4. Be yourself with full confidence. You want to be loved for exactly as you are not someone you have to try and pretend to be, so do not start a new relationship trying to be something you are not. Just be you and let that be enough. If they like you, GREAT! If not, someone that is a better match for you will come along, and they will adore you to pieces. Honesty is the best way to go. Be honest with who you are because everything eventually finds it’s way to the surface so it’s better not to have secrets from the start. 
  5. Don’t compare your new partner with your ex. Every person is different and unique. Each individual has their own particular set of characteristics, and that is a beautiful thing, but comparing is never a good idea or a step in a good direction. Your past is your past. Your ex is your ex. Leave it behind you and focus on the traits and qualities your new partner has.
Learning to Love Again
Learning to Love Again

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