If you want to know how to recover from tough times because you feel stuck in a negative thought loop, I have a helpful tool. Read on…
Note: The following is an excerpt from my popular video course: Broken Heart Recovery.Although this article is about heartbreak, the “powerful sentence” and lesson learned (shared below) can apply to any tough time or challenge!
A long time ago, when I was in my 30’s, I dated this handsome Ivy League guy.
We ultimately broke up because we were very different people.
You see I am a morning person and he was a narcissistic control freak with sadistic tendencies.
I joke – but I’m serious.
I’ll call him Tox – short for Toxic Partner.
Tox didn’t show up as an obvious Toxic Partner. He was charismatic, successful, funny, generous, romantic.
Tox inundatated me with love letters, flowers and candle-lit dinners.
Unfortunately, Tox also had his hidden underbelly Toxic side.
Tox didn’t like it when…
- I went to the gym or yoga class without him. He worried I wanted to meet men.
- I arrived home from work super happy. He became jealous that I loved what I did for a living even more than I loved him.
- I dressed in anything somewhat sexy. “When you dress sexy, it makes me think you’re interested in meeting other men,” Tox explained.
For the record:
I wasn’t. I liked to dress sexy to feel sexy for me and Tox. Kaput.
But while dating Tox, I entered into what I refer to as “My Amish Girl Period.”
Basically, turtlenecks became a staple throughout all four seasons.
“If you ask me,” my friend Lisa told me one day. “You’re not involved in a relationship. It’s a hazing experience.
One time Tox was heading to Chicago for business for a full week. Before he left he handed me a little white box. Inside it was a plastic button pin with the words:
“Don’t even think of sleeping with me.”
“I saw this pin in a store,” Tox explained, “Want to wear it while I’m in Chicago?”
Was he joking? Did he really want me to wear the pin?
“You’re joking, right?” I asked Tox.
He smiled awkwardly. “You can if you want to,” he said. “After all, it’s funny, right?”
I chose not to wear the pin – but showed it to my friend, Lisa.
“Tell him I want a pin, too,” Lisa said. “One that says ‘Don’t even think of sleeping with Karen.’ I’ll wear mine wherever I go.”
“Tox would be in trouble if we did wear pins like these,” I laughed. “After all, you know how men can be! Wearing a pin that says ‘don’t want me’ might only make men want me all the more.”
Although Lisa and I laughed, I confess that deep inside me I was not laughing.
In fact, I was quite scared.
I knew that Tox’s jealous and possessive behavior was problematic. However, I could not bring myself to break up with him.
After all, I was in my thirties. It made me sad that I’d invested so much time, love and emotions-of-all-kinds into our relationship.
I worried if we broke up, I’d lose my chance for having a family.
And Tox talked all the time about how he wanted to have a family with me.
After the “pin gift,” I experienced a “Freudian misread” related to my fear of marrying Tox.
Lisa lent me a book about successful coupling. I kept misreading the words “LOVE MATES” as “LOVE MATS.” I wondered: Do I feel like a “love mat” in this relationship?
I realized that staying with Tox would bring me lots of tough times ahead.
However leaving Tox would also bring me tough times – of a different kind.
I didn’t know what to do.
Soon after, with the support of a wonderful therapist I broke up with Tox.
If you want the longer story, click here.
The short story about this tough time…
I feared if I merged my destiny with Tox, I’d lose my soul’s destiny altogether.
It was a really devastating break up. My parents were confused.
After all, Tox was smart, Ivy League, handsome, charismatic, successful, funny- and I was in my “ancient” 30’s!
My parents wondered how I could jump off this relationship when it was sailing towards marriage and babies!
Yet I left.
I knew in my heart and soul that it was the right choice.
Although I was the one who left Tox – I felt totally heart broken.
I worried this break up was a redirection towards “unhappily ever after.”
So how did I ultimately move on and survive this tough time?
I told myself a powerful sentence – which helped me not to view the break up as a Gigantic Life Sentence.
This empowering sentence was….
The part is not greater than the whole.
This is a mathematical principle based in fact – which also completely applies to life.
Think about it.
A break up is just a part of one’s life – it is not one’s whole life.
Nothing is everything.
A break up is not everything.
A challenging event of any kind is not everything.
A tough time is merely something going on INSIDE one’s life!
A hard time is NOT one’s WHOLE life.
It’s just a slice – not the whole!
And it’s up to us to keep this “slice of life” in perspective.
When I began thinking of the break up as a “mere slice of my life,” I gave myself permission to enjoy all the other yummy parts of my life far more
If you want to recover from tough times…
If you’re going through a challenging event right now, please keep in mind that this challenging event is just a mere part of your life!
It is not your whole life!
The part is not greater than the whole!
Please re-focus on ALL the MANY other yummy parts of your life!
Please know THIS about recovering from tough times…
It’s never too late to rejigger your life – so you find yourself on the path towards your soul’s true callings and cravings.
You have it in your power to survive tough times – and come out stronger, better, wiser.
I know this personally.
I now no longer accept toxic people into my life – thanks to this break up.
Heal from heartbreak
The above was an excerpt from my groundbreaking video course Broken Heart Recovery.
If you’re struggling to heal from the pain of heartbreak – and eager to stop a pattern of unhappy relationships, learn more here now!
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