At 26, I can’t say that I’ve dated much, but when I did I made it count. I realized in all the dating I did do, I preferred building towards something long term, so I want to first begin by saying that , no, I am not Sway therefore I do not have all the answers on dating and finding love. I am not a guru or an expert, but what I do have is experience and tons of lessons learned as my shot at being a credible source to you. giphy (1)

It’s easy to come out of relationships and have no idea what to do next, especially if they were long term. You might not even be at the place where you’re thinking about the take-aways and lessons, but how can you move on with your life and hope to one day be happy with someone when you don’t know what went wrong previously?

You might already be in a relationship and things could have taken a sour turn where each of you constantly point the finger of blame, but never own responsibility. Trust me, I’ve been there, but moving forward and exploring new love has made me aware of the warning signs of toxic relationship and how to avoid them and be a better partner.

Neglecting Your Relationship

Think of your relationship in terms of a flower in order for it to grow and stay alive you have to water it, give it the right types of plant food and lots of sunlight. It has to be nurtured and cared for properly. Often times we think that once we get into a relationship we don’t have to put in the same amount of effort as we did in the beginning, but neglecting the relationship is a sure way to make things boring, and dry or leave no choice but for your partner to lose interest.

Neglecting Yourself

Remember that before him/her…there was just you and all the things that made you, you. Don’t lose those things that make you who you are. I mean yeah, there will be some things that you’ll have to compromise such as if you spent your Friday evenings or Saturday nights mingling with the single social scene…you might have to find a new scene that doesn’t involve singles mingling for love, but that doesn’t mean you have to give up Wednesday night Happy Hours with the crew. That doesn’t mean you have to give up your hobbies to be attached to the hip of your significant other.

Codependency

This is a tough one. Sometimes it happens and we don’t even realize it until the relationship gets really bad and you feel like you’ve reached a dead end. You share everything: bills, money, life so even though the relationship is bad you don’t feel like you can leave because you’ll literally be assed out of whatever you were sharing. You might not be able to afford your lifestyle on your own expense so you adopt this mindset that you need each other. No matter how bad things get, you need each other to live. You support and enable each other’s destructive habits.

You’re Always Right

Believing that you’re always right is a bad place to be in a relationship because that means that you are no longer growing, it means that you are not understanding and it means that you are narrow minded to think that you’re way is the only way. Thinking that you are always right silences your partner. It’s like that one kid that doesn’t know how to play nice on the playground because they think everything belongs to them even though they’re not using it nor did they build the public playground. It blinds you from your own faults and decreases your level of responsibility in relationship problems.

If this is you, chances are you aren’t ready to share your life with someone just yet. That’s okay it just means you have some things to work on but being able to identify them beforehand can save you a lot of trouble.

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