I’ve dated plenty of guys but I’ve never actually had my heartbroken. The secret? Taking every single letdown as a lesson learned and consistently giving myself reality checks.
- I don’t set high expectations too soon. I’ve realized I have a habit of falling in love with the idea of what a relationship with a new guy might offer from the very beginning rather than the reality. This has often set me up for disappointments that I can only blame myself for. My dream relationship could be opposite than what’s ideal for them. I strive to never set my heart up for that kind of disappointment.
- I always trust my intuition. I often experience frustration with that little voice of reason warning me away from things—like that he’s too controlling and might be a narcissist that likes to manipulate people, for example—but the last thing I’ll ever do is ignore that voice. If I get the vibe that I’ll have to keep tabs on him because he’s the sneaky type, I’d ignore how cute his dimples are and focus on those signs that his personality might be toxic AF with mine.
- I remain assertive to save time. I used to be one of those people that enjoyed not having labels because defining the situation was too heavy. But allowing someone to come in and out of my life without any boundaries or genuine interest gets old real quick. My time is precious so I never feel guilty for being honest. I’ve completely tossed aside my filter recently. I’ve canceled dates just to tell a guy he can only be my friend or mutually used for sex. I’ve even asked for a second date to decide if the shared connection would actually last.
- I never waste away my precious youth. I’m a very visual person, so guys with muscles and dimples steal my attention far too quickly. I’ve created a rule of thumb: If I find myself pining away for a guy to finally reciprocate my feelings towards him for more than a couple weeks, I cut him off and separate myself. I’m totally unapologetic when it comes to enjoying my youth and maintaining emotional health.
- I refuse to get lost in a new relationship. I always try to set boundaries until I’m absolutely sure this promising new relationship is actually going places. I’ve witnessed countless people completely lose their identities in a short-term relationship. They went from being independent to needing constant validation and approval from their partners in just a couple weeks. I can’t allow my identity to be sucked into the void of a fragile relationship. It’s not what I’m here for.
- I avoid the instinct to fix guys. I feel conflicted when my maternal instincts kick in after seeing someone emotionally damaged, but I still steer clear of broken hearts and the emotionally unavailable. Sure, they’re probably a great person with huge potential, but I’m not a super patient person or a psychiatrist. I’ve learned that disappointment is a constant battle when it comes to my logic being overruled by my emotions.
- I love and accept myself completely. I’ve never demanded or expected validation from anyone in order to feel loved and wanted. I constantly reassure myself that I’m a bad-ass individual that refuses to live my life based on someone else’s opinions. Depending on someone to make me feel confident and worthy is a guaranteed recipe for heartbreak and resentment. I refuse to grow old and bitter.
- Happiness is within me. I think the fact that I’m my own best company and that I have a ton of confidence has helped me realize that happiness doesn’t only exist within a relationship. I’m fully aware of who I am and what I want in a relationship. Anything or anyone outside of what will maintain my inner peace and appreciation of myself is not allowed in my life. No exceptions.
- I remember that unconditional love can be unhealthy. I learned the hard way with close friends that I can’t be a ride or die for everyone. Having someone’s back and providing constant support no matter what they say or do is extremely unhealthy. I’ll never say that unconditional love is terrible, but I will say that it comes down to self-respect. Unconditional love should only be reserved for those rare and special individuals that have had a consistent positive impact on your life.