It’s easy to get drawn into a negative relationship. It may have started out seemingly perfect, but things seemed to change overnight. It may be time to decide whether or not the positive attributes outweigh the negative ones when it comes to your relationship choices.
If you’re unhappy and emotionally drained after a break up, you might not be feeling too optimistic about throwing yourself back out there. However, opening yourself up to new opportunities is the only way you’re going to reach the happiness you seek.
The best thing you can do is to educate yourself well enough to know what to look for and what to avoid. It’s not a fail-proof plan, but by following certain strategies, you can increase your chances of a lasting relationship.
Try taking these actions to avoid negative relationships:
1. Avoid falling back on the wrong person. If you’re feeling particularly lonely, you may feel the urge to fall back on someone that’s not right for you. Deep down you know that this person is not “the one” and yet you come crawling back anyway trying to convince yourself that maybe the person can change. Chances are, they won’t.
2. Spend time getting to know your partner. Focus on getting to know your partner first before getting too serious in the relationship. Try to have some of the heavy conversations near the beginning of the relationship. This way if you hit major snags you can either decide to work through it or move on quickly.
3. Learn your partner’s history. Are there disturbing events in his or her past? It’s clearly best to avoid people who have a history of violence or intense addiction. If they do and you choose to proceed with the relationship, be extra cautious and set the ground rules from the beginning.
4. Avoid manipulative people. You might not realize it at first, but if you find that you’re being manipulated often, it can prove to be a serious drain on your relationship. If your partner is controlling and always has a selfish motive for their actions, it isn’t the best relationship to be in. Recognize these red flags when you see them and get out before you get too attached.
5. Make a checklist. Take some time to make a list of the qualities you’d like to see in a partner. Include qualities you like as well as qualities that you dislike. This checklist will help you determine whether the relationship is right for you. Here’s a tip: avoid writing down superficial characteristics such as looks. First and foremost, you must be attracted to his or her personality because the superficial things can and will change as you age.
Relationships can be difficult; it’s just a reality of human nature. The fact that many relationships end shouldn’t have any impact on your hope for the future. There are plenty of people out there that will be a good match, so it’s okay to avoid relationships that sap your soul.
In the #1 New York Times bestseller The 5 Love Languages, you’ll discover the secret that has transformed millions of relationships worldwide. If your relationship is flourishing or failing, Dr. Gary Chapman’s proven approach to showing and receiving love will help you experience deeper and richer levels of intimacy with your partner.
Remember: you do have a choice! Focus on finding the right partner for you and then take action to make it the positive relationship you’ve always dreamed of!