What Messages Do You Send to Others?

Hello, my name is _________ and I am a serial participant in one-sided relationships.

Sound familiar? Today I want to talk about the messages you send through your relationships with others. Albert Einstein once said, “Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”.  That’s why it makes sense that you feel like an insane person when you constantly put forth the effort in relationships only to be met with a brick wall. I’m sure we’ve all been involved in a one-sided relationship at some point in our lives…but what are you saying to others when they see you in a relationship that isn’t mutually beneficial?

One sided relationships

What does that say about what you value in relationships?

valueothers

It’s great to value others but you have to also value yourself. You have to find yourself worthy enough to be involved in healthy, loving, mutually beneficial relationships. My daughter and I frequently listen to Kids Place Live on the satellite radio while we’re in the car and there’s a song (it’s silly) from Segret Agent 23 Skidoo that sums up what I want to say:

I’ve been so guilty of being the one who always puts myself out there in relationships to the point where I look like an asshole calling, emailing, and trying so hard all the time. You would think I would get the hint, right? The thing is that I don’t. For the longest time I continued in these relationships looking (and feeling) pathetic. There have been a few times where I’ve deleted phone numbers out of my phone because I know that’s the only way I can stop myself from trying to continue the relationship. The few times I’ve done it I’ve thought, “so-and-so will call me when they want to talk”. Guess what? Those people never called. Why? Because they were never interested in having a relationship with me in the first place, which is fine.

What message do I want to send?

positive message

What does that say about what I value?

valueselfandothers

I’m at the point in my life where my relationships with people I love (and who love me back) mean more to me than anything else. I value the time I spend with family and friends and I wouldn’t trade it in for the world. I’m also at the point in my life where I realize that I don’t have to be friends with everyone and I accept that sometimes people don’t want to be friends with me.

“The truth is, everyone is going to hurt you. You just got to find the ones worth suffering for.” -Bob Marley

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Righting The Wrongs of The Past

I was perusing Facebook, my usual pastime, when I happened upon a photo of someone I was once close with in college. She was an incredible friend, a wonderful person, and what happened between us will likely be among the biggest regrets I will have in life. Very long story short, we lived together in a townhouse one summer and I became friends with some of the neighbors who didn’t really get along with my friend. I was young, I was immature, and I ended up siding with the wrong people in a very heated fight (not physical) between my alcoholic neighbor and his wife and my best friend. I said and did things I shouldn’t have and I lost that friendship. It wasn’t until I moved to the Midwest and was able to look at the situation objectively that I realized how very, very in the wrong I was and how unfair I’d been to someone who didn’t deserve to be treated so unfairly. After some time, I can’t remember how long it was, I finally sent her a message apologizing for my actions and the hurt it caused her. I’ve kept up with her on Facebook and saw that she was recently married. We’re grown-ups now and we’ve both moved on with our lives. She seems so happy and I couldn’t be more thrilled for her because she deserves it.

Seeing her picture tonight is what prompted my Facebook status (and now my post). Here’s what I wrote:

One of the biggest tragedies in life is the inability to go back and right the wrongs of the past. The best you can do is reflect, learn, and move forward. If an apology is owed, give it…even if that apology is to yourself.

I think apologies that come from heart are incredibly important not just for the person that has been hurt but also for the person responsible. We all make mistakes, we’re human beings. It’s learning from those mistakes that help us become better, that help us grow. We don’t get do-overs. What we do get, though, is do-better-next-times. I’d like to think I’ve come along way as a human being than I was back then but I still have room to grow. Don’t we all?!

I’ll leave you with this, a picture of something I saw a few months ago that really moved me. I hope you love the concept as much as I do: