Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Ex's: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of a Former Relationship and Marriage

Depending on circumstances, ex’s can be a valuable asset, a nightmare, and worst of all, an attraction-killer to your present partner. Let’s explore…

As you may remember from the bio on the MakingHerHappy.com web site, a lot of people have called me “Doc” since childhood, not because am a medical doctor, psychiatrist, dentist, veterinarian, or college professor, but because I’m the guy that makes whatever ails you go away, no matter what it seems to be. I spend a large part of my life hearing other people’s problems and providing solutions for them, and one of the problems I hear about most are “ex’s” – ex-husbands, wives, boyfriends, girlfriends, employers, etc. I don’t know if you’ve ever thought about it, but how people become “ex’s” in your life and how you deal with them once they do says a lot about you, and we need to talk about some of the things it can say, because some of it is really good, and some of it is really, REALLY bad.

Let’s start with the worst case first, and work our way to the better ones. The worst case is the ex that became an ex because war was declared, and you got hurt and have never gotten over it. You talk about the relationship and the break-up all the time, even though it’s been years ago. Have you noticed how people react?

Have you noticed that they tend to “glaze over,” look at their watches, roll their eyes, and suddenly remember somewhere else they need to be or rather forcefully change subjects? If not, open your eyes, because they do, and it’s costing you. People don’t like hearing the same lament over and over, and they don’t like being around people who harbor pain, depression, grudges, etc. It’s a major attraction-killer, and labels you as a wuss who can’t deal with life and move on.

Face it, everybody goes through at least one bad relationship in their life, and they get over it. They learn how to better choose a girlfriend, wife, friend, business partner, employer, or whatever, and they move on to have a better life. If you’re not doing it, the only thing keeping you from it is YOU. Make the choice, stand up, dust off your pants, and step forward. If it was so traumatic that you need professional help, get it, and get it done. Life’s too short to spend it looking backward instead of moving forward.

The next worst case isn’t much better. It’s the dependent that you can’t quite get rid of. The ex-wife or lover that you’re constantly having to bail out of a jam, the child who is well into adulthood that you keep bailing out, even though a person their age usually has a family, mortgage, and established a career, the ex-employer who either fired you and continues to call on you for help or the one you left that keeps leaning on you instead of hiring a competent replacement, any of which causes you to complain and be distracted when you’re around people who currently really do matter to you and want to enjoy your company.

They don’t like listening to you repeat the same laments and frustrations any more that you want to hear it out of them. It labels you as a push-over, another breed of wuss who just can’t say “no,” no matter how badly “no” needs to be said. You guessed it, another major attraction killer.

People who don’t want to be partners of some sort and share life with you, whether it’s a wife, girlfriend, buddy, employer, business partner, offspring, or whatever, don’t deserve to have you sacrificing yourself to their incompetence, delinquency, etc. Altruists around the world are cringing as I say this, but you know it’s true. Your life is too short and too precious to allow yourself to be bled dry by a bunch of parasites who won’t let go of your jugular vein.

There are good people around you more than willing to share life with you, no matter who or where you are, so why cheat yourself and them of the great things you can do and be together while throwing your life’s energy away to these “hangers on”? You’ll find that when you do this, all you will attract are more parasites, because good, competent, independent people will shy away, not wanting your problem overload to spill over on them.

The other kind of ex to which I want to call your attention is the only good kind to have, the kind with whom you have shared something for awhile, and as you grew apart, you responsibly recognized that you were evolving in two different directions or at incompatible paces and you went your separate ways on friendly terms, like the employer who keeps you in their Rolodex as a potential consultant and gives you a good employment referral (not just a reference, but calls up somebody in their own network to help get you placement), and to whom you would refer competent sources of help, materials, or whatever.

Or like the ex-wife or ex-girlfriend who steers opportunities your way, and to whom you steer good quality people. Maybe you even double date from time to time to help each other meet new people, steer contacts to each others’ businesses, etc. This is highly attractive behavior to all but the most insecure of women, because it says that you can accept responsibility for your actions and decisions, keep a level head and reach workable agreements with people, and won’t be a needy wuss who hangs onto them if things don’t work out for the long term. It says that you’re strong and of good character, that you focus on the value in people, not their flaws. I don’t know about you, but that’s precisely the kind of thing that I want to be known for, and consequently, am known for.

Fights are neither necessary nor desirable to resolve a bad relationship of any kind. At 45 years old I’ve never been sued, and every conflict I’ve engaged in during my adult life has been settled in a logical and equitable manner by mutual consent, including all former marriages, employment, and customer relationships. I know of nobody that I’ve ever dealt with that I couldn’t call up right now and have a good conversation, and probably find some way of stirring up a business deal or some kind of fun. It sounds like quite an accomplishment, but while it may be unusual, it has never been difficult, and should not be difficult for you, either, Why?

Because all it takes is the willingness and respect to deal squarely with those around you, looking for what you can accomplish together instead of what you can cheat each other out of. Being known for being such a person makes you attractive to everyone in all respects, and when it comes to women, they want a man who will take the lead, act responsibly and fairly, keep a positive attitude, and keep things moving for them, not somebody looking for every possible way to screw them, cheat them, lie to them, etc. Sounds rather like an employer, does it not?

Knowing how to evaluate and maintain a good relationship at home, how to communicate with people, and how to create attraction in the woman you love has far-reaching effects, much farther reaching that you might ever imagine before doing it. Look around you. Those men who are happy at home are happy at work as well, and they have solid relationships with all the people in their life. They know how to choose good relationships, how to communicate with people, and how to be the kind of guy that people want to be around.

You’ll find that when you do the things described in "THE Man’s Guide to Great Relationships and Marriage," the rest of your life will start improving at the same pace that things at home improve. Your confidence level increases, your communications skills improve, and you become more fun, interesting, competent, and generally enjoyable to have around. You can keep putting it off because you don’t know if you can do it, or you can accept the fact that a lot have people have already done it, many of which may not be as sharp as you, and you can make just as big a difference in your life as they have, if not even bigger. Download it at
http://www.makingherhappy.com, it’s guaranteed, it’s fun, you can afford it, and quite frankly, you probably can’t afford to not do it, at least not if you realize just how short life really is and don’t want to spend it watching everybody else enjoying it more than you do. Join us, right now!

In the meantime, live well, be well, and have a wonderful day!
David Cunningham

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