Earlier today (Meditation Day 10), I shared a story about a past relationship that when it ended, changed the course of my life forever. I talked about how over time, I’ve learned to live from my core, trusting my gut in situations, not overreacting to things, and beginning to understand who and what I want surrounding me. In other words, acknowledging and trusting that I know best in what I want for myself, and cannot live my life for anyone else.
In today’s practice, we begin to focus on feeling safe, trusting our own guts (cores) to guide us, in order to make better decisions. When I think of this, I think of dating in this day and age.
Being from D.C., dating can be the worst thing on the planet to partake in. I’d say 1 out of every 4 dates I had been on (prior to my boyfriend), had gotten to a second date. And, 1 out of every 10 or so dates I had been on, had potential for a third date, although few ever made it that far. It became an overly exhausting process that while it oftentimes resulted in a great friendship, it also left me feeling as though it might be quite sometime before the right man would come along (which is fine because I already had plenty on my plate).
From time to time, while going through this frustrating dating process, I would catch myself, remembering a time where it seemed like it was so much easier to snag a boyfriend and move on with life. I started to mentally review past relationships, trying to understand why it was so much harder to enter into a relationship these days. I realized that in the past, my own insecurities were getting in the way of choosing well, causing me to take on relationships that weren’t a fit. The result? Zero trust in the other (cheating men), a lot of freak-out moments and stress (me), causing my work and my friendships to suffer, people to question my integrity, and of course, creating a huge aura of negativity around me.
When my last relationship ended, I decided to take a new approach to how I view dating and relationships, and it’s a bold one.
Dating is a step to a relationship. You get to know the other, developing something that goes beyond a platonic friendship. You spend time together and try to figure out if this is someone you want to create space for in your life. For me, it also means understanding if our life goals are a match, or are at least similar. This is one of the biggest driving factors in understanding if investing my time in the other is worth it. It sounds so heavy but the truth is, life is too short to be with the wrong person.
Relationships also take on a different meaning, in that you are beginning to build something together because you see future potential in more (even if you don’t know what that more necessarily is). It’s not about finding your own sense of security and happiness in the other, it’s taking what you both bring to the table, and creating something different that adds value and purpose to your life. It’s about being a couple, it’s about a deeper love, it’s about sharing every part of your being. It’s a huge step and a huge commitment – one that too many of us in this day and age take for granted.
What this story has to do with trusting your gut… In the third paragraph, I talked about what was commonplace in my dating life, and how many dates one would usually get to before I’d move on. This is because I learned to trust my gut. Prior to moving back to D.C. in May, I took stock of what I wanted for myself, and what I’d want in a potential partner. I realized it was okay to have this list, so long as it complimented the direction my life was going in. I knew that it would happen organically, and there’s no way I could ever force it. So, I’d go on dates with those I’d consider potentials, as each of them had an aspect (or two) of something that was appealing (complimentary) to me. And what I learned was that 1. I was (apparently) looking for a unicorn and 2. I was searching for something that a list couldn’t drive – it was a feeling that I wanted evoked in me. THAT one discovery made my dating life MUCH easier. Why? Because that FEELING is your GUT telling you what to do. It’s your core telling you to trust yourself – that you will create your own safety by getting out of your own way, never settling, and believing you deserve the best.
As you may have guessed, unicorns do exist, and I’m happy that I learned to believe in myself and trust my instincts. It’s because of meditation and learning to know who I am that I have found the best fit for me. So how do you take all this and run with it?
- You need to live your life for yourself. Most of you have been through heartbreaks and they suck. But the truth is, your life existed before the other came into it. Always remember that.
- The universe gives you what you’re meant to have. It’s up to you to figure out what to do with it. This is where the trusting yourself comes into play. If your gut tells you the universe gave you a “bad apple” – it knew that – it wanted you to practice trusting yourself in making good decisions from a good place. (It is possible it’s also teaching you patience, humility, bravery, and a whole host of other things that come with dating a bad fit.)
- The MINUTE you feel a red flag coming on, do not second guess yourself. The answer is never your gut is wrong, the answer is always walk/run away. It doesn’t mean the other person is a bad person, it means they are not the right person for you.
- Trying to make a relationship fit because you don’t want to be alone is a very bad idea. This is when you take all of this meditation guidance and start from the beginning, learning to know/trust who YOU are. Like I always tell people, you need to love yourself first before you can truly love someone else.