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Children are smarter than adults, because I’ve never seen a child with a full-time job or a broken heart. They have life figured out. Ever seen a 7-year- old complain about being single? “Mommy, nobody will go to Chuckie Cheese with me!” No, you haven’t. Give them a piece of candy and a puppy, and they will be happy all day finding joy in what they have, not what they lack.
As grown-ups, we focus on what someone used to be instead of understanding the strengths they offer us now. We say, “I don’t want someone who’s been married.” Well, maybe a divorce taught that person valuable lessons they carry into new (better) relationships; they are a better person and partner because of that “failed” relationship.
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Just because a relationship ends doesn’t mean it’s a failure. It can be a success if each person takes the lessons learned into future relations. Each “failed relationship” gets us close to our last (and hopefully best) relationship in life. Often times a person can only appreciate the view of the mountaintop because the divorce was their valley. Another person’s journey is not ours to judge.
Kids do not care about each other’s past. Ever seen a 3-year-old approach another 3-year-old in the sandbox and say, “Tell me what it was like when you were a baby? I can only be friends with 3-year-olds who were breast fed and wore Huggies. If you wore Pampers, I’m afraid we can’t be toddlers in crime. I’m sorry.” This would never happen because kids focus on what exists, the current moment, and not what doesn’t exist…a person’s past.
Sometimes we end relationships before they even begin because of what we think we want in a person. Instead of showing up with a script of what we want, why not be present and see what manifests. For instance, you may want a partner who is close to their family. But you want that because you are close to your family. Maybe a person is amazing because they never had family and learned how to be strong on their own.
Children enjoy the moment and create new memories together; adults regurgitate old ones. Kids judge a person by what is shown to them; grown-ups do not see a person because judgements are in the way.
If you talk about where you went to college on a date, or what it was like in your past job, you’ve failed to live the current moment. Who cares about what you did two weeks ago or two years ago? That was then, but why not live now? Do that. It’s more fun. There is no fun in reciting your past; you already know the ending to every story.
When you meet a date, look at each other, and simply say “What made you happy today?” Begin there, and don’t script the next question. A successful relationship and emotional connection is built on new memories together, not talking about past ones that should be buried. If you want to dig up past memories, you are also digging up those past relationships. Why visit the cemetery when the hearse drove away years ago?
The lessons a child can teach we’ve known all along, because we used to be one, but sadly we’ve forgotten. We become accumstomed to the ways of the world, the world of fear. Our fear has us worried someone will hurt us, or repeat what has happened in our past, but anyone you meet has never been in your life — they aren’t “that person”. If we don’t see what someone shows us, then we don’t see them at all — we simply see our baggage and what hinders us from being in a successful relatioship. We hold ourselves back.
The next time you see kids playing together in a park, pay attention. They are doing more than playing. They are creating happiness. When they are done, new memories will have been created and friendships made stronger. As you date and begin new relationships, forget about what you know or read on a profile and think about what the person has to offer now.
If you see the best in that person right now, they will likewise see the best in you, and that is a great start.
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