Relationships/Love

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THIS IS THE LOVE WE’LL REMEMBER LONG AFTER IT’S GONE

Published by Elephant Journal~ January 15, 2017

“My heart is not captured easily. I am disinterested in small talk, disillusioned with love and too focused on my dreams and aspirations to lend anybody my attention for long. 

But if we make that connection. If you find a way into my heart, I will fall for you like gravity has let go of the earth” ~ Beau Taplin

I will not settle for anything less than a soul-deep electrifying connection.

I’m tired of forcing myself to fall for all the “I shoulds.” The expectations that tell me I should only consider you a possibility if you meet all the criteria on a well thought out check list.

The list dictates you must be of a certain age and at a particular place in your life and possess certain qualities that make a good long-term partner.

The ideals that say we must want exactly the same things at this precise moment when our lives converge and intersect.

F*ck all the shoulds. I want passion.

I want to feel the air thick with tension and longing and electricity when we stand next to each other in a room.

I want to feel just slightly off-kilter around you because you challenge me and I know you’re going to keep me guessing and always on my toes.

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GUYS, WHEN SHE SAYS THESE 6 WORDS, LISTEN TO HER

Published by Elephant Journal~ January 5, 2017

“So then she said to me, ‘I just want to be friends,’” my friend James relayed to me over the phone. “What do you think she means by that?”

“Um…She just wants to be friends,” I replied.

“Really?”

“Yes, really. Move on.” I advised.

I have said these same words to many men in my life. It’s never easy. We never want to hurt your feelings but we also never want to lead you on.

We might do it gently at first, without much conviction or power behind our voices, because we desperately don’t want to hurt you. And we definitely don’t want to come across as rude or mean. We’ve been on the receiving end of these very same words ourselves and we know how they can sting.

But when you don’t hear us and keep pushing us for more, we will start to get frustrated. We will begin to feel hesitant about hanging out with you at all because we aren’t sure if you’re going to try to make a move on us again or make yet another suggestive comment that makes us uncomfortable.

And we’re getting tired of feeling uncomfortable.

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~ QUOTE BY MARK GROVES ~
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Part of opening ourselves up to love means being vulnerable and letting people in. In doing this, we take the risk of getting hurt.

None of us who have deeply and passionately loved another person has gotten off scott free from having our hearts broken and our lives turned upside down by being so vulnerable.

I’ve gone through my own share of losses and my life being dismantled like anyone else and what I’ve learned is this….

You can focus on the loss or you can focus on the task of rebuilding your life.

You can focus on the hurt or your can focus on the healing.

You can focus on how unfairly you were treated or dismissed or betrayed or you can focus on the red flags & signposts you missed so that you can recognize them the next time someone else walks into your life that you are considering opening your heart to.

WE CHOOSE. We CHOOSE the lessons we take from the experience and how we can learn from the heartache.

We CHOOSE what kind of people and behavior from those people are acceptable in our lives moving forward.

We CHOOSE to not allow anyone or anything cause us to just shut down, push people away and run from something else in the future that might bring us the happiness we deserve.

The answer is in simply being more discerning about who we open our hearts to in the future. Because we are all so deserving of love. And we teach people how to treat us.

So REBUILD. Keep your heart OPEN. GROW yourself from the pain. And TRUST that the Universe has something better for you in the most Divine timing.


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DON’T SETTLE FOR A LOVE THAT DOESN’T ROCK YOUR WORLD

Published by Elephant Journal~ December 27, 2016

“Love is not warm and fuzzy or sweet and sticky. Real love is tough as nails. It’s having your heart ripped out, putting it back together, and the next day offering it back to the same world that just tore it up.” ~ Glennon Doyle Melton

Don’t fall for my bullsh*t line when I tell you that I just can’t find a good guy.

It’s a lie I allow to fall from my lips to cover up the fact that I’ve found many.

So many good guys out there have found their way up the chipped, concrete stairs leading to the somewhat splintered wooden door of my patched-up heart.

They’ve bravely knocked and asked to come in, undeterred by the non-existence of a cheery welcome mat out front or the fact that I like to keep the door tightly locked because I’m still afraid someone might find their way in.

I like to playfully joke with a twinkle in my eye, “There’s no point in coming in here, boys, because I know you’re going to leave anyway!” I breathe it out with a light-hearted laugh, the wave of my hand a last ditch effort to convince them it’s totally okay with me because I wouldn’t really want them to stay too long anyway.

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ONE THING TO LET GO OF TO IMPROVE ALL OUR RELATIONSHIPS

Published by Elephant Journal~ December 30, 2016

I hear you say you know little of love.

I listen to your regret over hurting someone from your past.

I feel your shame and guilt for not owning what was yours.

Maybe you couldn’t bring yourself to say, “I think I might love you.”

Maybe you refused to admit, “I’m sorry that what I did or said hurt you.”

Maybe you just weren’t able to be fully honest with yourself or another person regarding why your friendship or relationship ended, because having that particular conversation would mean taking responsibility for things—and it might feel profoundly uncomfortable for those 20 or 30 minutes.

And the truth is, some of us would rather face a lifetime of regret than feel the least bit uncomfortable or exposed.

We’d rather not have another person know our true feelings for them or what they mean to us, because we’re too scared to risk the possibility that they may not feel the same.

We’d rather be right than admit any wrongdoing for a fight we had or the devastation we caused in another person’s life, because admitting we were wrong might tarnish our own reputation or make us look bad.

We’d rather go to our graves having never mended fences with our mother or father or children or siblings, because we can’t let go of the past and it’s more important for us to be right—to hold onto our anger and resentment and righteousness—than to make the slightest move toward forgiveness.

Here’s what I believe ruins every good relationship—not just romantic, but friendships and family relationships and quite frankly every damn relationship we will ever have in our lives:

Our egos.

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SEVEN WAYS TO STOP BREAKING OUR OWN HEARTS

Published by Elephant Journal~ December 6, 2016

How many times have we said out loud, “He/she broke my heart,” or “It breaks my heart when…”?

The truth is: we break our own hearts.

This is a painful truth to face.

I’ve lost count how many times my own heart has been broken. I could argue that the breaking of my heart was done to me by another person. I could easily make myself the victim of my stories of heartache and loss. But I’ve come to realize that in each situation, I had a choice. And my choices were the cause of many broken hearts.

I am in no way suggesting that we won’t sometimes have our heart broken by another person when we do everything right, even when we make the best choices for ourselves. Because that’s part of life. Our hearts are fragile and vulnerable to the actions of others.

But there are things we all do that lead to heartbreak and I think awareness of some of these things can possibly spare all of us from breaking our own damn hearts in the future.

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AN ODE TO ALL THE MEN WE’VE LOVED BEFORE: YOU MATTERED

Published by The Good Men Project ~ September 21, 2016

There’s a point in every woman’s life where we decide it’s a good idea to do an inventory of all our past relationships and figure out what the f**k went wrong. And what went right. Because there’s a nice solid mix of both those ingredients in every relationship we have.

I write this for all the men who may have an ex they think hates them. And for the ones who are convinced the girl they truly loved has never given them a second thought since the day she broke his heart.

And the ones who dated someone for such a short period of time, well, they believe she probably doesn’t even remember his name.

None of this is true.

We think about every single one of you. Whether it lasted years, months, or only a few weeks, you’ve shaped us into the women we are today.

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 IS IT POSSIBLE TO REBUILD TRUST AFTER SOMEONE CHEATS?

Published by The Good Men Project ~ September 14, 2016

I coach a lot of clients who have had affairs, both men and and women. I truly believe that there are no coincidences in life and the Universe brought these people to me to heal my own pain from an affair that ended my own marriage.
Oddly enough, none of the clients I’ve worked with were wanting help with rebuilding the trust in their relationships. Because the simple fact was, the trust was gone. And neither party felt that they could ever get it back.

Instead what they wanted was a way to forgive themselves for what they had done. They wanted someone to listen and show them compassion for the reasons they had strayed, the reasons they used to justify being unfaithful, and the feelings they now had about themselves.

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WHY I NEED MY LIFE TO BE MORE THAN CASUAL “HOOK UPS”

Published by Elephant Journal ~ September 8,2016

I hate to admit this out loud, but I absolutely hate dating.

I’m not any good at it. I’m going on almost three years of being single after 15+ years of being coupled and the dating scene has changed in ways I can hardly wrap my head around. Back then, there was no “swipe right” or hundreds of good-looking single men and women to choose from in the area if you just want a nice meaningless “hook up.”

My male friends who are now married feel like they really missed the boat on this one.

On the contrary, I feel like a sputtering fish out of water because this whole dating scene seems very Millennium to me and doesn’t quite vibe with my 40ish single-mom-to-two-small-kids, relationship-oriented self.

I’ve tried to adapt to the singles scene. On paper it all looks great. I get to hook up with lots of hot guys as often as I want with no strings attached! I get to abandon my yoga pants and let down my three-day-old ponytail and get all dolled up to go out a real date and drink martinis at some uber hip bar in LA. I get to experience that butterflies-in-the stomach feeling we all remember from our years before marriage and admit we miss once we’re married.

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WHY PEOPLE WALK AWAY FROM LOVE & RELATIONSHIPS

Published by Elephant Journal ~ July 6,2016

I am often asked by people—who were in the beginning phases of a relationship or already deeply committed to another person—why the other person walked away and gave up on the relationship.

There are no easy answers, nor are they ever the same. We all choose to walk away from things for a variety of reasons, which are personal to us. But I am a big believer in soul connections and that nothing is a coincidence in life, so I believe that each of those relationships was meant to be something for both parties involved.

One of my spiritual mentors calls the walking away from a relationship a “forfeiture.” It’s when the universe, God, or whatever you believe in brings two people together with the intention and hope that they will take the opportunity to create something together—and then one person withdraws prematurely.

It was not an accident or blind chance that we’ve met. That person was brought to us because we were asking for what they had to offer in some way, whether it was through prayers, through the energy we were sending out or even through our thoughts, which we may have never verbalized to anyone.

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WHY WE AREN’T GETTING WHAT WE WANT IN OUR RELATIONSHIPS

Published by Elephant Journal ~ May 24, 2016

“Rather than letting our negativity get the better of us, we could acknowledge that right now we feel like a piece of shit and not be squeamish about taking a good look.” ~ Pema Chödrön

This week was one of those weeks I had to take a good look at myself.

Those low level feelings of sadness, discomfort, anxiety and feeling like complete sh*t were whispering in their insistent, annoying little voices and I was choosing to ignore them.

Because, you know…I’ve got this. This whole working full time, commuting twp hours a day, taking on more clients, doing coaching/healing work and trying to be a good friend and a mother and a mentor. Oh…and this new Mastermind class I’m taking.

Yep. I’ve got that too. Squeezed that right in.

And I wasn’t setting boundaries. With anyone, but mainly myself.

Let it be known that I’m phenomenal at telling my clients and friends how to set them. How to honor themselves and what they want in their relationships…whether it be the relationship with themselves, a friend, a co-worker, or a lover. I clearly see where they aren’t being honest.

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 YOU CAN RUN BUT YOU CAN’T HIDE, HOW RELATIONSHIPS TRIGGER US

 Published by Elephant Journal ~ March 22, 2016

There are very few things in life that scare me: bungee jumping, clowns, sharks.

Emotions. Getting hurt again.

I’ll be frank and admit right now, I’d prefer to jump from a cliff with a bungee cord wrapped around my ankle into shark-infested waters with that freaky clown from Stephen King’s It riding shotgun on my back, than feel emotions that may lead me to getting my heart broken again.

But I’m no coward. I’m committed to overcoming all my fears because they are just that…fears. And running from them and from myself is no longer an option.

When life gets profoundly uncomfortable or our emotions surrounding a particular situation get to be too much, many of us run. We run from the discomfort, we shut ourselves off and don’t communicate what we’re feeling; we become passive aggressive in our actions and don’t face our own stuff head on.

So we can run as long as we need to from the same thing that keeps popping up in our lives, but ultimately once we do a few laps around the “Avoidance Track,” we end up in the very same place we started—with nothing to show for all that heart pounding and running except utter exhaustion and the realization that we exerted all that effort and still haven’t even begun the race.

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Soulmates

THE 5 TYPES OF SOULMATES WE’LL MEET & LOVE IN THIS LIFETIME

 Published by Elephant Journal ~ February 15, 2016

“Important encounters are planned by the souls long before the bodies meet each other.” ~ Paul Coelho

Most of us have met many different soulmates in our lifetime. All of them are deeply meaningful, intensely connective and profoundly impactful on our lives.

Some soulmates stay around forever and some leave more quickly than we want them to. What some of us have a difficult time with is feeling that deep, soulful connection with another and then having to go through the process of accepting that their purpose in our lives has been served and it’s time to let them go.

Not all soulmates are made of the feel good “we fell in love the moment our eyes met and are going to love each other till the end of time” kind. There are many other types of soulmates, ones who come in solely for the purpose of teaching us something, some to break apart our life and redirect us to somewhere different and some who pass us for the briefest of moments, yet tug on our hearts as if we’ve known them a lifetime.

These are some of the soulmates I’ve encountered in mine (except the last one), all of them captivating, memorable and absolutely necessary to my soul’s growth:

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8 WAYS WE CAN SABOTAGE RELATIONSHIPS BEFORE THEY START

 Published by Elephant Journal ~ January 16, 2016

My friend *Eve (*not her real name to protect her identity), sabotages almost every relationship she starts before it ever gets off the ground.

She meets somebody she really likes, gets through the first or second date, and then pulls a litany of damaging and cringe-worthy moves that make every guy second guess his decision to date her.

Then they stop returning her calls and text messages after what were actually decent dates.

It makes me feel horrible for her, but at the same time when I point out what she’s doing that might be driving them away, she fails to listen, then repeats the behavior the next time around and wonders (again) why she’s alone.

We all have some baggage. Even if we’re in our early 20’s and still fresh to the dating scene, we have probably at some point in our lives been let down, had our hearts broken, or been raised to have certain expectations of people and relationships.

Although our experiences have been different, the one thing we all have in common is that most of us are looking to find someone we’re attracted to, have a great connection with, and can be in a committed relationship with…if not forever, then at least for a little while.

Unfortunately there are a lot of ways we can sabotage a new, potentially great relationship before it ever gets off the ground. These are some of the most common complaints I hear from friends that make them cut things off after just a few dates…

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HOW TO END A RELATIONSHIP WITH LOVE
 Published by Elephant Journal ~ December 8, 2015

I have ended many relationships in my lifetime.

Some were initiated by me. Some were a mutual decision.

And some were ones I didn’t want to end at all but needed to.

I have been incredibly lucky that most of my relationships ended with love, compassion and general feelings of good will towards each other as we parted.~

Then there have been the ones that have ended with hurt feelings, untrue accusations, undiscovered lies and reservoirs of anger that still simmer to this day. None of us want a relationship with someone we used to love to end like this. And I’m realizing it really doesn’t have to.

There are ways to end a relationship with someone we no longer feel is a good fit for us in a loving and compassionate way, that leaves both parties feeling seen, heard and acknowledged for what they brought to the relationship.

The ones I’ve had that ended beautifully, with clarity, grace and gentleness all had these elements:

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SOUL CONTRACTS: BUCKLE UP, IT’S GONNA BE A WILD RIDE!

Published by Elephant Journal ~ November 1, 2015

“Important encounters are planted by the souls, long before the bodies see each other.” ~ Paul Coelho

Have you ever met someone that you feel an instant connection with, where the connection is so strong it takes your breath away?

It’s almost as if a vibrational energy is pulling you towards the person, and no matter how hard you try you can’t stay away from them?

Yep, that’s a soul contract in your path—for sure.

I recognized my soul contracts with certain people pretty early on in my life. I didn’t have a language for it back then, or even know how to describe it, but I definitely knew when I had met someone significant that was going to have a big impact on my life.

In my younger years, I would have told you that every feeling I had of “knowing” with a man meant I was supposed to be in a relationship with them. And most of the time, it did.

What I didn’t know was that the experiences that were deeply painful and difficult were exactly what my soul had requested before coming here so I could learn and grow.

Damn soul, always taking the bumpy route to enlightenment.

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I WON’T BE ANYONE’S 2ND CHOICE ANYMORE

Published by Elephant Journal ~ November 4, 2015

I think as women, we settle for a lot less than we deserve.

We often accept being in a relationship with someone who is not all in, as in… not “all into” just us.

Why do we do it? 

I think we do it because we think the person will eventually realize how amazing we are and choose to be with just us and us alone. We do it because we are just so head over heels in love that we will accept whatever tiny bits of themselves they are willing to share with us.

Sometimes we do it because we are already committed to the person and we hope that they will find their way back to us.

I have personally found myself in this situation twice—both gut-wrenchingly painful experiences that I have worked diligently to never repeat again in my life.

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4 REASONS I VALUE MY RELATIONSHIP WITH THE MAN WHO WASN’T MY SOULMATE

Published by Elite Daily ~ October 23, 2015

Despite what some people believe, all of us aren’t looking for our “forever mates.”

In a culture that teaches us every relationship we choose to be in must “go somewhere” or ultimately lead to a walk down the aisle, it’s a mystery why any of us ever partner with someone just to have fun or to simply fall in love for the experience of it all.

The truth is, 95 percent of the relationships we choose to be in don’t lead to forever. They’re meant for something else far more important.

So, the next time you’re thinking about walking away from someone who intrigues you, but who you can’t necessarily see yourself with long-term, you may want to consider the following:

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9 SIGNS THAT YOU’RE IN AN UNHEALTHY RELATIONSHIP

Published by Elephant Journal ~ October 22, 2016

When we love someone, we often can’t see that the dynamic between us and them may not be a healthy one.

We mistake lust for love. We mistake an amazing sexual connection as love. We mistake “escape” with love. And we definitely mistake attachment to the other person as love.

True love is one where there is no distrust, no fear and no hiding who you really are.

It’s one where the other person doesn’t place rules and conditions on you. They give you room to be yourself at all times even if it differs from them and they give you space when you need it, even when it doesn’t include them.

I have been in unhealthy relationships just like everybody else. I am aware of my own unhealthy patterns and can spot them as soon as they crop up and put on the brakes before diving in now.

I am well aware of the kind of male energy I draw to myself (ones that needs to be fixed, loved and nurtured) and I have learned how to put up boundaries to protect myself from getting hurt.

I do not do this perfectly. Let’s face it. Old patterns die hard. When it’s familiar, it feels good because it’s what we know. And when it feels good, we are drawn to it like a moth to a flame.

But there are some red flags I always tell people to look out for. These are the most common ones I see with people in unhealthy and addictive relationships:


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CAN WE LOVE SOMEONE WITHOUT THE EXPECTATION OF A RELATIONSHIP

Published by Elephant Journal ~ October 21, 2015

The way I grew up, love looked like this…

You met someone, developed feelings.

As the feelings grew stronger, you got into a relationship together. (Those feelings may or may not turn into love.) If they turned into love, the relationship got more serious.

Maybe you end up together, maybe you don’t. But that’s the way love had to look in my head.

As I grew up and had my paradigm split open, I saw there were different ways to love people.

Not all of them fit into a normal “relationship box” as I thought they should.

The first time I experienced this was when I was 23 years old. I had an electric connection with a co-worker. It was if we had known each other our entire lives.

He got me. We got each other. He taught me things about myself I carry with me to this day. I never thought much about that friendship as it was developing. I just knew our connection was deep and I looked forward to seeing him every day.

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CLUES IT’S TIME TO LET THE ONE YOU LOVE GO

Published by Elephant Journal ~ October 18, 2015

“One form of loving is when you just want the best for someone, whether that includes you or not.” ~ Unknown

When we love someone, our attachment to them is huge. Being in love and feeling someone’s love in return is as intoxicating as a warm summer day on a secluded exotic beach.

I have been incredibly fortunate to have loved and been loved many times in my lifetime. Each love was different, filled with different degrees of affection, different levels of intimacy, different kinds and depths of love.

Some of those loves were easy to let go of. There was a gradual ending to the relationship. Or a mutual understanding that our paths were now meant to go in different directions. And as hard as it may have been to say goodbye to someone I had shared so much with, it never felt like the ripping out of my heart like others that were to come later down the line.

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WHAT MADE ME FALL IN LOVE: MEN SHARE WHAT CAPTURED THEIR HEARTS

 Published by Elephant Journal ~ September 29, 2015

I love a good love story. I think we all do.

In a world where we are surrounded by so many relationships breaking up, couples divorcing after 15-20 years together and bitterness between ex-lovers, it’s refreshing to hear that people still get giddy talking about what actually made them fall in love with someone.

There are so many things that make a woman captivating to a man. And it’s not always her physical beauty. It’s her inner radiance, her uniqueness, her inner light. Most of the time, it’s something she herself doesn’t see as anything special, but it’s the thing that made someone fall hard and fast for her.

Men share what made them fall in love…with past loves and current loves. All remember them with a smile and a sense of nostalgia, and in many cases, a longing for that incredible feeling they first felt when they laid eyes on her:

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WHEN SOMEONE SHOWS YOU WHO THEY ARE, BELIEVE THEM THE FIRST TIME

Published by Tiny Buddah ~ September 27, 2015

“When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.” ~Maya Angelou

I remember first hearing these words in my early twenties. I heard them. I just didn’t follow them. Hence, I brought myself a whole lot of painful lessons and needless suffering because I always wanted to give people a second chance, and a third, and a fourth … You get the picture.I was the girl who always saw the “potential” in people. The person they “could” be, with a little love and nurturing from yours truly. I considered myself to be one of the most loving, loyal, and big-hearted people out there. And besides, there were very few things I truly wanted that I went after and didn’t get.

I suffered many disappointments and even more heartbreaks because of this, both in friendships and romantic relationships.

I expected people to change just because I thought they should be or feel a certain way. But at that point in my spiritual journey, I hadn’t yet learned that everyone is on their own path, and sometimes their soul just isn’t in alignment with yours.

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WHY WE CAN’T FILL OUR HOLES WITH SOMEBODY ELSE’S LOVE

Published by Elephant Journal ~ September 27, 2015

There are holes inside each of us that long to be filled—for by filling them, we don’t have to feel the emptiness that resides there.

That hole can be one that needs approval, one that needs security or one that longs for validation that proves we are enough.

We search for ways to “fill the void”—that aching, empty, bottomless pit inside your soul, that feeling of needingsomething that if you don’t find and keep leaves you incomplete.

Most of us tend to fill that void with things that aren’t healthy for us. We latch onto destructive people, get involved in the wrong kind of relationships, take drugs, have casual sex, overeat, drink or spend money believing that if we find the right stuff to fill ourselves with that empty feeling will go away.

But it doesn’t.

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THE TRUTH ABOUT SOULMATES

Published by Elephant Journal ~ September 17, 2015

Growing up, like every other young girl, I was told how one day I would find my “soulmate.”

He was that one special person in the world who was meant just for me—I would know immediately the moment I met him that this was “the one” and we would recognize each other immediately, fall in love and live happily ever after.

That is complete and utter bullsh*t.

Don’t misunderstand me. I absolutely believe in soulmates. In fact, I think soulmates are our greatest teachers in this lifetime and all of us will find ours as we pass through life.

But what I have discovered is that just because we find someone who we connect with deeply and passionately on a soul level, it does not mean that this is necessarily the person that we are meant to spend the rest of our days with.

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HOW TO STOP DATING EMOTIONALLY UNAVAILABLE PEOPLE

Published by Elephant Journal ~ September 8, 2015

The “emotionally-unavailable” man or woman or “EU” as I like to call it, is probably the biggest issue we deal with in the dating world.

The term “emotionally unavailable” usually refers to people who create barriers between themselves and others in an effort to avoid emotional intimacy. Emotional unavailability stems from a lot of different things, but no matter where it stems from, it always poses issues in forming lasting relationships.

A relationship where both partners are “all-in” is tough enough. But when you’re dealing with someone who isn’t even “halfway in,” things are a lot harder.

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