Whilst you’ve been mourning the loss of your ex, you’ve probably decided that you’re not going to trust again, that you’ll just keep it casual, or that you’ll make things difficult for the next person. You may even decide that you don’t think you can ever love again.

I remember crying over some assclown about ten years ago and playing Toni Braxton’s ‘Unbreak My Heart’ on repeat. Sure, I’d forgotten him within a couple of months, and I cringe at the image of myself wallowing in the madness of heartbreak.

You want to be loved and be in love. You want to love. But you’re starting to close up inside and can’t trust yourself or your judgement.

But remember, Thou must not give up on love.

If you give up on love, you give up on yourself.

After a difficult breakup, the crucial thing is to get this whole love thang into perspective.

Love is a beautiful and powerful thing, but only when it originates from the right place.

Sometimes, loving someone is about not loving ourselves that much. This is unhealthy.

Love should allow you to be you. You mustn’t be a ‘morpher‘ the moment that you declare love and lose your personality and sense of self.

Love doesn’t happen just because you’ve decided it should.

It’s not a case of hanging around until the object of your affection suddenly realises how amazing you are and declares their underlying love. Where is your love for you?

If you get to live the fairy tale, and really, I doubt you will be able to every single day, minute, and hour for the rest of your life, you are the exception, not the norm.

Love starts with YOU first.

If you love yourself first, it begs the question of whether loving this person means you can’t love yourself?

Love is not about deciding you love someone even when they don’t treat you that great while assuming your overwhelming feelings for them make it so.

This is the biggest struggle that we have as women. We love someone for any number of arbitrary reasons and place our love on them. It’s a bit like, “Well, I love them, so they have to love me. And if I love them, it means they’re ‘The One'”

We assume that the relationship is’ right’ because we think we love someone.

You are far more likely to get into a healthy relationship full of love with someone if you know how to love yourself first.

Lose this unconditional love malarkey that we seem to love hurling in the direction of unsuitable partners, and start spending a little time closer to home with you.

As someone who has been down the rocky road and back again, I know how easy it is to close yourself off and effectively shut down out of self-protection.

You become wary of trusting your judgement and afraid of failing.

Relationships are the sum of two people who have both their feet in the relationship and who both take a leap of faith.

Find a balance. You don’t need to be pessimistic, but you don’t need to be so optimistic that you keep thinking every person who asks you out is ‘The One’ and putting your name in front of their surname to see what it sounds like before you’ve even had a first date.

Don’t be desperate.

Please don’t leave your anger unaddressed. Don’t operate out of distrust or resentment.

Focus on doing something positive with the negative experience, like loving you more and being 100% committed to you.

In turn, once you commit to breaking any negative patterns and approaching your relationships healthily, commit to remembering the lessons learned from your past. But don’t tar every [prospective] partner with the same brush.

Date the person. Don’t date them and then act like you’re going out with every one of your exes.

Daters hate feeling like they’re dating walking baggage. It’s not fair for them to have to clean up the mess and be punished for the mistakes of others. Judge a prospective partner based on your experience with them, not your past, and ideally without a whole load of fear weighing you down.

Instead of saying, “I will never trust ever again,” say, “I will learn how to trust again. I won’t give any more power to the negative experience because I need to get on with my life and live it.”

Embrace yourself, your life, your experience, and move forward. If you give up on love, you’re shutting down your capacity to feel. And trust me, if you shut yourself off and declare yourself ‘off’ relationships or are afraid of commitment, you have a lot more waifs and strays from the assclown camp to welcome into your life.

Your thoughts?

Check out Commandment 1: Thou shalt cut off this ‘Let’s be friends’ malarkey

2: Thou shalt not obsess.

3: Thou shalt stop fearing the pain of breaking up and confront it.

4: Thou shalt stop doubting yourself and get angry.

5: Thou shalt be accountable

6: Thou shalt understand WHY and do something with the knowledge

7: Thou shalt forgive…but not forget…but don’t cling.

Commandment 8: Thou need to get a life!

9: Thou mustn’t give up on love.

10: Thou must close the door and move forward.

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