I am a self-motivated person; it’s what I do for a living. But, even so I must confess starting again in love is tough. OK, someone broke your heart for whatever reason, or things didn’t work out for you the first, the second, and even the third time. You feel you will be able to move on, perhaps. You have a feeling you may still find your Mr/Ms Right. But what if you have faced disappointment the 5th, 6th, and annoyingly even the 7th time? Let me share my frustration from personal experience; say it didn’t work out even on the 8th, and the 9th try! Now, would you still believe, with the same confidence, that you will meet that special someone?
We live in an era where our blessing has become our worst curse. Technology, created to be our friend, has become an enemy for matters of the heart. I love technology and what it equips us to do. But, as it has brought us closer digitally, it has also, sadly, somehow succeeded in separating us emotionally. You want to know something right now, you can figure it out just by clicking a few buttons. But, when you are not able to, it irritates you, frustrates you, and gets you anxious.
Our hearts have got distant. People don’t have the time to cherish relationships or invest dedicated time in them any more, because there is always another update, another message, another app, another follower, and another friend request to distract us and take that moment’s beauty away when we would otherwise be building upon our relationships.
Related reading: My flawed concept of ‘The One’
As our hearts have got distant, our patience levels have dropped. When you are young, you are more excited about being with someone than being with the right one.
For instance, in my younger days, it was exciting for me to know I could meet so many people on WhatsApp, messengers, through dating websites, and other such portals. These things were just entering the scene and the opportunities to seek a partner they provided were ‘cool’.
It was more about who would click first than being patient for the right one.
Once, when I jumped in to a relationship too fast, my values (luckily they have always been in the right place) made me realise, “No, this is not the one I see a future with,” so before anything more could happen, within a month I let her know we couldn’t be together. But that’s not the case with everybody in general. Most people end up with a wrong person for the wrong reasons investing their valuable time and efforts in a wrong relationship.
Technology exposes us to so many options that, especially when you are young, you can be misguided. Excited, we enter a relationship too soon, bored, we exit too quickly. We figure we don’t click or feel for the person the way we would like to in love. More often than not, the reason is simple: we jumped in too early without really taking the time to understand our so-called ‘partner.’
Then something fresh, supposedly more appealing comes our way, and we seem to move on. Even the slightest of adjustment issues can trigger this naive behavior (learning to adjust by the way is one of the most beautiful aspects of being with someone – you understand how to be a partner and grow together rather than stay an individual forever!). We have lost the patience and drive to work upon our relationships.
Related reading: Two decades of dating, and still waiting for love
But what when you no longer have the looks, the appeal, and the speed that you do now? What if later, sadly, you realise that someone you left was the one?
I ask you the above question from personal pain and learning. I have been fortunate to have dated a lot of partners, beautiful not only on the outside, but even more so on the inside. But, unfortunately, I didn’t have the patience and the realisation to hold on to the inner beauty, due to my high levels of ambition, pride, and professional drive, seeing arguments or time invested to talk, meet and chat as time being wasted. Time which I believed could have been utilised to work on something of value.
The big question then is “Can you believe in a perfect relationship the xth time?” I am proud to say that though I have committed a lot of mistakes, I now have my heart and head synched. I could forgive myself, I could let go of my past mistakes. I could move on.
How? I try and think of the reason I let go of the relationship. If the reason was valid and strong, I tell myself that I value myself enough to not to want to go back to the same partner. And if I find the reasoning shallow (and the person is no longer available) I learn the value of valuing my next partner better than I did previously.
Take your time before you get into a relationship. But when you are taking your time, do it with an open heart. Give the other person space to make mistakes, enjoy the differences, and see if you can work on them together. Once you both decide that you can build something beautiful, go for it. But, remind yourself, you can’t grow a partnership seeking to pick on the wrongs. Instead, feed on each other’s strengths.
Go for it, fall in love again, trust again. Even if it is not easy, remember you must, to fulfil your dream of spending your life with a great companion.