The Key to Happier Relationships

short hair woman holds small orange flower standing in forest in sunny sky
by Vance Larson

I’ll never forget it. She was in my office… again. Multiple marriages. Multiple divorces. She wanted to know why all of her relationships ended poorly? I usually like to work from a place of compassion, but on occasion, I have to let it fly. I told her that she was mean, and she was carrying too much weight. We had a long standing work relationship, so I felt it was time to lay out the truth. She said “Wait! What?” Did you just call me fat? Of course not. I am talking about the extra weight from you past failed relationships that you failed to let go (much less address). People like her I call a hard lover. Let me explain.

So many people miss out on great relationships because they can’t (for whatever reason) let go of their past. They become jaded and an expert at predicting red flags. Well, not really. But in their head they are. They end up making the safe choice. They pick a partner that will live up to their low expectations to justify their mindset. It’s a sick self fulfilling prophecy. We all experience hardship in relationships. It’s what we do with that hardship, that speaks volumes about us. Do we love harder, or do we create a hard love?

Many of my clients have overcome relationship issues. Some were just petty problems. Other were quite significant. Before getting married, my ex ran up just shy of 100k of credit card debt on my account. That alone would have been reason enough never trust another person again. But instead of me harboring resentment, I went to work on myself. I asked the tough questions and made the hard adjustments. By doing that, I matured to the point where I attracted a women that mirrored that maturity. In other words, I loved harder.

When we sit with extra weight, we really are sitting in judgment. It’s almost like we are setting ourselves up for failure. I was having coffee the other day in between meetings, and overheard a group of ladies talking. One of them said that all men were cheaters until they prove to her otherwise. Yikes! What self respecting person would even entertain that type of relationship? You are going to be punished for the sins of others. And that is something I would never do. I don’t care how attractive or intelligent they maybe. They’re out for pain. And that’s not healthy.

I have spoken of this many times. Even published a few times on the subject. You don’t look for the perfect partner. You become the perfect partner. And while there are no absolutes with regards to human behavior, we can position ourselves for a better outcome. It’s like the person who has been diagnosed with lung cancer. They are told that if they keep smoking, that it will surely kill them. But, if they quit and make some adjustments, they’re still going to feel pain, but eventually they’re going to recover. Same principle in relationships. We have to quit the denial and make some adjustments to see brighter days. Sure, it’s easier to stay the course and that course will lead to a life of hard love. Affirm today that you will love harder.

woman walking on a beach

If you have had family or friends say things like maybe it’s you, or you are attracted to the wrong type of people, they maybe right. And if they are right, you have a choice to make. Love harder, or settle for hard love? Think about it. I’m not talking about a few bad relationships. I am talking about a long line or string of nasty break-ups. What is the one common denominator? If you’re honest with yourself, it’s you. So make the adjustments. Feel the pain. Love harder.

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