Archive for June 2011

When Is It Time To Just Walk Away?

June 23, 2011

Walking away from a situation is never easy, especially when you truly care for someone and have invested a lot of time and energy into them. Walking away from someone who you care about is one of the most challenging things to do when it comes to relationships. Not only can walking away be difficult, but coming to the reality that the relationship has reached its expiration date is another issue all in itself. No one wants to be hurt. No one goes into what appears to be a great situation and think that months or years down the road that the relationship will reach a dead-end. Nonetheless, it is a reality that most people must face at some point in life. Outside of God, good relationships can be one of the most fulfilling things in a person’s life. However, severing ties in that relationship can also prove to be one of the most painful. If you have ever had that 1st love heartache, you know what I am talking about. You think that the world is about to end. You try to move forward, but it’s the pain and memories that try to hold you hostage in the past. If you find yourself at the crossroads right now where a relationship has run its course; I have included 3 things to know when it just might be time to walk away.

1.)  Be Real With Yourself- This would seem like the easiest step in the process, but actually it can become the most difficult because sometimes we allow feelings to get in the driver’s seat. It’s hard to be real with yourself when you are in denial. You know something changed. You may have complained about it time and time again, and they change for a brief moment, but resort back to the same old habits. Perhaps it seems like they are not putting in as much as you are into the relationship. Yes, some people make bad choices in a relationship that hurts the other person a great deal. Oftentimes, not only do you forgive, but you try to repair the relationship. If you ever lost trust, it takes much more to earn that trust back again than it was to gain it from the beginning. You have to know when it is time. You have an entire life ahead of you. I have said it time and time again, “you cannot make someone change if they are not ready.” You can try to reason with them all you wish, but you do not have the ability to change someone’s mindset. Can they change? Sure they can, but it does not mean that change will happen on your watch. No one cares to hear this, but perhaps you just sowed a seed for a harvest that will come later in their life. You must face reality. However, it is up to you to know when time has run out. Staying in an unhealthy relationship only produces unhealthy results.  Everyone is different, but you must pray to God for strength and wisdom to know what to do. I tell you this much; If they are not the one for you, you are wasting time and they are occupying space for the One God has for you to come. Most of the time you know, but it’s getting past denial.

2.)  When Your Love For Them Is Based Solely Off Past Experiences- If you are with someone and the relationship is dwindling, you can always take inventory. Is your love for them based off of things they did in the past? Have they done anything consistently recently for you to see them in a new way? Too often, individuals hold on to a good memory of “I remember when.” “ I remember when you used to do this, or you used to do that.” Well, used to has a key word “Used.” Sometimes an individual becomes used up in a relationship, and you must recognize when that time has come. Used to is in the past. What have they done for you lately to put fuel to the fire in that love? Sometimes, you must conduct a true assessment of the situation. The worst thing you could do in the situation is just exist. IF TWO PEOPLE ARE SIMPLY EXISTING WITH EACH OTHER, IT’S NOT A RELATIONSHIP, IT’S AN ARRANGEMENT! Relationships are active and they grow. They grow because as you age and are exposed to new things, you may change some. So, as you both change, you both must adjust. Many who have been married for decades did not do it just by existing. On the other hand, there are people who have been married for decades who are existing and don’t know they are just existing. You deserve the best of the best, and should demand it. At the same time, you should give your best. However, when you find that your best is not appreciated, taken for granted and practically walked on; it is time to do some serious analysis of your relationship. You must communicate, but there comes a time when what you communicate must also become action. WORDS WITHOUT ACTION IS JUST A SUGGESTION! Also notice that within “Words” you can scramble it and it can also spell “Sword.” It’s amazing that some of your words can be used against you by someone you love. A sword that cuts deep. It’s those who are close to you whose words hold the most power in your life.  Love is very powerful, but love is also a choice. You may not always choose who you happened to be in love with, but you can choose to continue to love them the way you do or not. There are some relationships that have reached an expiration date where you can love them best by just walking away. It will benefit all involved in the long run.

3.)  When You Make Too Many Excuses For Their Behavior- When you have to consistently justify why the individual is doing what they are doing in the relationship, you are running a great risk to settling. Sometimes you say something so much until you actually begin to believe it. Continuously saying they will change does not change the reality that they have not. Change is possible as I stated before, but they must want it. What if the very thing you want them to change is not suitable for you, but is suitable for someone else? If it don’t fit, don’t force it! Excuses do not help anyone involved in the situation. There comes a time when you get tired of making excuses. What is even more detrimental is when your excuses cause you to cheat yourself out of life. Especially if you get to a point of accepting that “this is just how it’s going to be.” When you get to the point of thinking that it is what it is, you have officially cheated yourself. You have just said that your life is not valuable because your happiness is not important to you. I know some people say they just want to be happy, but what they are doing to themselves to be happy is not worth it because it is definitely temporary. Some individuals ignore facts for what they call happy.  It’s one thing to be happy and still wrong, but it’s another thing to be miserable and  still right. We have heard it said, “When you know better, you do better.” It’s time to act on what you know is right. If you are faced with these challenges, it is not easy in any sense of the word. However, when you look back over it, you will be happy you did. Think about some people from the past who you thought was the best thing since sliced bread for you, and now you see them and say, “What was I thinking?” At the end of the day remember that you are Single For 1. YOU SHOULD RATHER MAKE ONE SACRIFICE TO LEAVE FOR PERMANENT GAIN RATHER THAN MAKE ONE BAD CHOICE TO STAY CAUSE YOU A LIFETIME OF HEARTACHE! That is all for now.

Your Singles Advisor,

The Duke

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Tricks Are For Kids: 3 Games You Should Quit!

June 10, 2011

We have heard the saying from the famous cereal commercial Trix, “silly rabbit, Trix are for kids! Well, that commercial has some symbolism in it. Tricks or games truly are for kids. You don’t want to be that silly rabbit. Many individuals will say that they do not play games, but if you cosign with the person playing the game, then that makes you guilty by association. In other words, you have to hold them accountable because your time is valuable. Games that some individuals play while in a relationship or during the process with hopes of getting into a relationship are far too common. I cannot stress this enough, a man or a woman should know what they want. If you are not sure, then you do best to continue to find out what that is. Yes, there is a difference between what we want and what we need. However, God is more than able to make what you need become all that you want. Sometimes, what we think we want at one time is not really what we want. However, whether you are male or female, you should not sign up for games, neither should you play games yourself. So, I have included 3 games you should quit!

1.)  Don’t Lead Someone On If You Know You’re Really Not Interested

A book could be written on this alone. It amazes me on the number of individuals I have advised over the years; very few can ever admit to leading someone on or that they were playing games. As I stated before, you may not always be aware that you are playing games. I know that you are an outstanding citizen and don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. However, you do more damage the longer you drag it on. Men do it to women and women do it to men. Be careful on the advice you take. Some of your friends who really want you to be with someone may say things such as, “give it time, they will grow on you”… “You are too picky”… “Get the most you can out of the situation because it’s not like you are getting married tomorrow”… “Leave your options open”… “You don’t know when you will meet someone like this again.” The list goes on and on. Guess what? At the end of the day, you and you alone will be with this person if you were to enter a relationship. Pity relationships are just like playing games.

If you know that the person is interested in you, you must be careful not to lead them on even if you have no intentions of leading them on. If you have had the talk with them that you are just friends and that is all you desire, then it is on that person to decide if they can handle being friends. Everyone who is interested in you cannot handle just being friends even if some of them pretend to. Some can handle it and some cannot. However, don’t be upset if they change on you. If they could not get what they wanted, they will move on. That is ok. You did your part by being honest. However, be careful not to take advantage of the person because you now know that they have “feelings” for you. Don’t use that as an opportunity to do what you want when you want just because you know how the person feels and think they will not go anywhere. Keep in mind that they are interested in you and will likely take your signs as to mean you are interested or will soon be interested. I know, I know you may think, “That’s not my fault if they feel a certain way after I told them I don’t see them like that.” Yes, but what are your actions showing? Are you saying or doing anything that contradicts what you said?” Are you treating them like a yo-yo and bringing them around only when it’s convenient? Perhaps you are not blinded by emotion, but perhaps they are. If you recognize it, you can help rectify it.

Don’t play with words or phrases like maybe one day, possibly, we will see, I’m not sure, etc. You need say what you mean and mean what you say. If someone is really into you, they may play on your every word. “Maybe” sounds like, if I stay around, you will come around and feel the same way. It does not take all that. Feelings are real, and you would not like it if it was done to you. We do know that we reap what we sow. If they’re not the 1, they’re just not the 1. The sooner you realize it and accept it the better. Don’t keep someone around just because you feel you need someone around. We are all adults, so govern yourself accordingly. IF YOU PLAY THE GAME, BE PREPARED FOR THE GAME TO EVENTUALLY PLAY YOU!

2.)   Don’t Go On A Date With Someone That You Know Stands No Chance

I am not going to overly spiritualize this and say everyone is beautiful in God’s eyes, etc. We already know that everyone is beautiful, but everyone is not beautiful to you.  So let’s be real. There are some people who you know would strike out before they even got a fair chance. Ok, so if you want to be real spiritual, let’s try this. Would you give a crack addict, a person on the side of the road, or a known “player or gold digger” an opportunity for a date? Perhaps some would because they think they can change them or fix them. That’s another topic for another day. Not that these people cannot be restored, but you also understand that they have other things they need to deal with 1st. There has to be some type of attraction whether physical, spiritual, intellectual, etc. I’ve touched on this before: women, be careful with all these “free” meals. I learned in high school in my Economics class the acronym TINSTAAFL-THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A FREE LUNCH. It applies to this as well. Someone who is interested in you is not really doing anything for free. They may very well be looking for something in return. Perhaps they are hoping to get to know more about you. However, if you are really not interested in getting to know them, WHY ARE YOU WASTING YOUR TIME AND THEIR TIME? So, you should not really get upset when he calls and is upset because he thought that perhaps something could develop or more could come out of it. He may now think you are the worst person in the world because you are playing games in his mind. I am not talking about those who want to play games or those who are just trying to get you in the bed. You should be able to spot those a mile away over time and put them in their place. I am talking about those who truly are looking for something special. Especially if you knew that this was not a business dinner or 2 friends going out. It is not 2 friends going out if the other person is interested. Please don’t try to sell me on you didn’t know they were interested because The Duke is not buying it.

Women and men for the most part know way more than they give off. Are you implying that this man who you really don’t know all that well asked you out on a date because he just had to spend money or had nothing else to do? Sure, there are exceptions to every rule, but let’s get real. Either way, time was set aside for you. Of course, the same applies to men. Men, why go out with a woman if you know you are not ready to commit to anyone? Why go out with a woman if you know she is not the type of person you would ever consider being in a relationship with? At the end of the day, men do it and women do it and it needs to stop if you are serious about a healthy relationship.

3.)  Stop Looking For the Rebound Person

Don’t hurt the next person just because the last person hurt you. No one really enjoys hearing all of what the last person did or did not do because in their mind, they are saying that they are not the last person. We have heard it said that “hurt people hurt people.” If you are still hurt and still holding onto the past, you do best to sit it out and wait until you are healed from the past hurt.  I also know that sometimes you may not know that you are until you meet someone else who does something that triggers your thought process to what happened in the past. However, whenever it happens, just know that you must face it head on and don’t run from it or try to ignore it. There is not much worse than the “Rebound”. You know, the person you link up with because someone recently hurt you and you just want to feel better with someone new being there. Well, now you are running the risk of putting the same hurt on the new person that the last person put on you. You must be careful that you do not seek a rebound, and also that you are not the rebound. No one likes to be used. You are typically emotional after someone just hurt you. Yes, women may show it more, but men are still impacted. Everyone reacts to being hurt no matter how much of a façade they put on. Hurt can be demonstrated through anger. Either way, the rebound is not fun. You know when it’s a rebound, but few admit it. It just happens to be someone who comes around at the right time, and when you come to your senses, oftentimes you realize that you got yourself into a mess. Some actually decide to stay in it.

Games are not for you, and when you know someone is doing it, call them out. Remind them early and often that you are not signing up to play games. However, the choice is on you if you participate or not. IF YOU PLAY IN A PIG PEN, ALL YOU COME UP WITH IS SLOP! As usual, remember that you are not single for anyone, you are Single For 1, and you hold yourself to a higher standard. That is all for now.

Your Singles Advisor,

The Duke

Are There Any Good Men or Women Left?

June 3, 2011

This is a question that some individuals may ask themselves when they are frustrated with the current dating landscape. After trial and error, some feel that it still seems that some people just can’t do right. There are some women who become frustrated and feel as though men play too many games. There are men who feel like women don’t really know what they want. So, we often find one side bashing the other side and placing the blame on the other sex. Well, it is safe to say that both sides have made mistakes along the way. However, the danger comes into play when you begin to put everyone into one category. Each individual is different, even though there may be some similarities along the way. If you really believed that the majority of the opposite sex was hopeless, then you would lose all desire for a spouse. Some have become so scarred that they play the I will hurt you before you hurt me game. Now, you have fallen into the trap and are becoming the exact thing that you despise.

So, are there any good men left for women? Are there any good women left for men? This answer is easier than you think. If you were to look into a mirror, there you will find the answer. Are you a good woman? Are you a good man? If the answer is yes, then there are good men and women left. Yes, I know that there are not too many people in the world who don’t think they are good. However, you know right from wrong. I don’t buy into the theory that some women make in believing that the good men of their race are being taken by women of other races due to a number of reasons. When you make those types of statements, you are really putting yourself down. You are practically saying that you are not good enough. If this is not done, then the blame is put on the man that they do not want a real woman. How can you get mad at a man for making a choice with who he wants to spend the rest of his life with? They just did you a favor by not wasting your time.  At the end of the day, was that man your husband? No, so keep it moving. You are not going to marry all men; you are going to marry The Man.

I also do not buy into the theory that some men make that too many women have bad attitudes. Ok, let’s do a little investigation here. Yes, you should know if you have a bad attitude. If you pray to God to show you where you come short, I assure you that you will be able to see because you want to be the best you. However, the perception of what a bad attitude is can be somewhat flawed. Let us 1st examine what a bad attitude is: A bad attitude is not knowing how to talk to someone in a respectful manner, always negative, never encouraging, always finding fault, a complainer and just being down right mean. If you do an honest self-assessment and find that you possess some of these qualities, then you should work on your attitude. Don’t work on it for someone else, work on it for you. Would you want to be with you?

Now let us examine what a bad attitude is not: You don’t have a bad attitude if you just refuse to play games; call someone out on their mess, won’t lower your standards, have expectations from the person you are with and holding them accountable if they constantly repeat the same errors; expect actions to line up with words. These are not classifications of a bad attitude, these are classifications of someone who knows what they deserve and will not take anything less than being treated the right way. Some individuals do not like accountability or when you don’t jump at their every word. Yes, the man must prove he is worthy of the gift and pursue. No free passes. The woman must also show that she is ready to be presented as a gift and ready to be pursued. This does not require a woman to be aggressive. You demonstrate this by continuing to work on you. The right man will have no problem putting in work and time for his gift. The right woman will have no problem expressing her gratitude to the right man. It is a mutual respect.

So, there are good men and women left whether one chooses to believe it or not. If you know that you are a good man or woman, there are other good men and women out there too. For the women, the good thing is that you don’t have to go looking for him, because he is looking for you. I know the frustrating thing for a lot of women is that you can’t control the timing of when that happens. For men, the good thing is that you know she is waiting for you to find her. The frustration comes in with the timing in finding her. At the end of the day, neither side can truly control when it happens. She cannot control when she is found, and he cannot control when he finds her. Sure, you can leave God out of it and just jump with the 1st person who is willing to jump on board with you, but you have waited too long to just settle. Every relationship will take work. YOU SHOULD PREFER TO INVEST TIME AND ENERGY INTO THE RIGHT ONE WHO WILL MULTIPLY YOUR INVESTMENT RATHER THAN TO INVEST IN THE WRONG ONE WHO TAKES WHAT YOU INVESTED AND SPEND IT WITH SOMEONE ELSE! You went through too much to allow this to happen repeatedly. So, it’s not in quantity, it is in quality. Invest in those who demonstrate they are investment worthy in your life. This is why I say often that casually dating someone is a waste of time because you are not really expecting much in return. Date with a purpose. There are great men and women left because you know you are. The problem is that there are some living below their potential. Just be careful who you invest into in reference to relationships. Everyone is not capable of handling a good thing right now, but some are. Thank God that you are not everyone, but you are someone’s ONE!  Remember that you are Single For 1. That is all for now.

Your Singles Advisor,

The Duke