depressed ethnic woman sitting at table
Self-Care Self-Reflection Tough Decisions

Release to Receive

Release to receive. This phrase is very similar to let go and let God. These two phrases can be applied to many aspects of our lives. Today, the focus is on relationships. Romantic ones to be more specific. When a romantic relationship (or any relationship for that matter) comes to an end, we experience grief. This is normal. When a marriage ends, same feeling. When a long term relationship comes to an end, same feeling.

However, our human selves. As a way of lingering on the loss, especially if the relationship was toxic. This feeling of loss sticks around, stopping us in our tracks. In addition to feeling of loss (grief) we experience sadness, disbelief, hurt or disappointment – just to name a few. These emotions manifest themselves when we illustrate our natural vulnerability. We cry softly, we cry loudly, we scream or curse the air. While these emotions are necessary and encouraged. It is important that we do not dwell in that space. If we dwell in those feelings we will eventually exert more energy — focusing our attention away from the greatness that we are to receive.

Case in point:

Once in a relationship for three years. Half way through, I realized that this person was not the one. Instead of release this person, I continued this relationship as a passive partner. There was no drama. My hands were filled with everyday “business as usual.” He wasn’t harmful and I was okay with allowing time to elapse.

That was mistake number one.

In year three, I called him out on not being transparent about his feelings or his needs. He was given multiple opportunities to share how he felt and until I decided to say something he said nothing. Relying on him to let me know what he was feeling and tolerating the relationship as is . . .

That was mistake number two.

Let’s pause for a deeper reflection:

In loving someone, Bell Hooks contends in her book All About Love that love is a verb. “Loving someone is an act that illustrates care, affection, recognition, respect, commitment, trust and honest communication”. This person failed to demonstrate a few of these key components but insisted that he loved me. What he was feeling wasn’t love. It was #cathect – which simply means that he invested some mental/emotional energy in our relationship – but was not able to or willingly to do the work required when we take responsibility to love someone. Often, people confuse loving someone with cathecting.

When asked, so it seems that you don’t want to be in this relationship anymore. Is that right? ” He replied, “I guess.” One valuable aspect of living is time. Time given, time received, and time spent. We must be conscious of wasting our time on things, people and situations that do not add to our existence in a meaningful way.

In that moment, I was in the middle of a graduate program at Columbia University; with a 30 page paper due that same week as well as joggling the demands of an educator and a mom. I was disappointed and furious. But then I quickly realized that I am better off without this person. This was the same feeling (though much more complicated) I had many years before when I finally divorced my abusive husband.

My emotions are not me and I am – in fact – in control of me (how I feel and what I do with what I feel). I have the power to re-focus and continue on my path of “awesomeness” despite a personal setback.

So today #BeInspired to release to receive! What is to be yours will be yours no matter what. You are beautiful, worthy, and entitled to happiness in its purest form and no one has onus over your joy and life journey BUT you. Release and be your own personal witness to the amazing events/things that you will welcome into your life!

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