1. Accept responsibility for your choices. Even though it might not feel very good, making the decision to take responsibility for the decisions you’ve made will help you learn and grow. After all, to be responsible for your choices is the opposite of being a victim; a victim is a powerless role. To be in charge of your own life is powerful.
By taking responsibility, you’ll be in a better position to learn from your choices.
Even when someone else has acted badly, it’s likely that you had a part to play.
Talking with a therapist, a counselor, or a trusted friend can help you sort through your choices in a new way.
2. Look for patterns in your love life. If you feel insecure in relationships or don’t like to get too close to people, chances are you’ve been in multiple unhappy love situations. A good friend or a therapist can be a great resource in identifying patterns that cause you to seek out bad relationships.
Try reading up on attachment issues to see if you’re able to identify your own experiences.
Seeing your behavior as a series of patterns, rather than moral failures, can help provide a nonjudgmental lens.
3. Examine your feelings about being single. There is a lot of myth-based stigma around being single. Fears about being single can skew your priorities, allowing you to get in (and stay in!) unsatisfying relationships.
People who are in bad relationships are just as lonely as people who are afraid of being single.
If you’re afraid of being single, you’re more likely to miss warning signs that would keep you from being in a bad relationship.
4. Protect yourself. Make sure you’re practicing discernment when you choose who to let into your life. If you notice friends who appear to take pleasure in your discomfort or misfortune, you might want to consider keeping them out of your life.
Cultivate friendships that help you feel nourished and protected. Your friends should be happy when things are going well for you.
When you’re surrounded by people who love and respect you, you’re more likely to be able to love and respect yourself.
5. Forgive yourself for past mistakes. If you’ve made a mistake by loving someone who’s not available to love you back, you’re only human. Being less hard on yourself may take some practice, but ultimately learning to forgive yourself will lead you to a more resilient life.
Mistakes are only mistakes, and opportunities abound to learn from them. Consider mistakes lessons that you needed to learn.
Without pain, there’s little chance of growing and learning new things. Mistakes, even painful ones, are just a part of learning.
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