Every so often, I come across someone who is stuck in an old relationship. Most recently, someone told me that he couldn’t have the woman that he wanted – so why should he even bother? The “person that he wants to be with” is an ex-girlfriend that it took him three years to realize that he missed her and she might have been “the one” for him.
Relationship regret is all too common when you start to give up on love and dwell in the past. There is no room for this in your life – especially when you are dating – and here’s why:
Your Brain Made You Do It
It is easy to fall into the idea of thinking that if you had just done something differently, you would still be with that other person. That “something” that you didn’t do happened because your brain made you do it. What I mean is that your actions and decisions in a relationship happen on a psychological level. Deep inside of you, your brain is making those decisions based on how you really feel about another person.
Breakups Happen for a Reason
People can change, but that does not change the fact that breakups happen for a reason, and that reason is still lingering. The best example I can use is the love triangle on NBC’s drama Nashville. When the lead is faced with two marriage proposals – one from a man she has loved for a very long time and one from her new boyfriend – she chooses her new boyfriend.
Why? Because while her long-time love has changed as a person, it does not erase the pain and hurt from the person that he was when they were together all those years before.
You Are Holding Yourself Back
The only thing that relationship regret accomplishes is keeping you lonely. When you dwell on the past and your past mistakes, you prevent yourself from moving forward with your life. The best thing that you can do is learn from those mistakes that you made.
Relationships are all about learning. You learn about yourself, you learn about someone else, and you learn what makes it work and what does not. Just as you would in school, take what you have learned and continue to apply it to your life. You will quickly discover that your future relationships can flourish and bring you the happiness you seek when you do.