"Failed Relationship = Gift"
by Carmin Wharton
No matter how badly or sadly a relationship ended, there is always something you can learn from the experience. Whatever you learned is your gift. Very often a current or past "failure" is what fuels you to the very success that you've always dreamed of. Past relationships give you a clearer picture of what you want and what you don't want in a relationship if you take the time to examine them. That’s the key, “take the time to examine them.” Whatever you do, don’t move to another relationship until you perform this examination. Let me share an analogy to make my point. When you rent an apartment, you are required to pay a refundable deposit fee and you are refunded this deposit if you leave the apartment in good condition. Consider your heart as the apartment and your self-esteem and self-worth as the deposit. If you don’t adequately clean the apartment (your heart), you will not get the deposit back (your self-esteem and self-worth intact). Leasing offices would not dare think of renting an apartment to a new renter with out first cleaning up, cleaning out and refurbishing the apartment. Do the same for your heart; clear away the debris of pain, disappointment, anger, fear, etc. before you invite another guest to inhabit your heart.
Now let’s get back to failed relationships as gifts.
One gift a failed relationship can give you is the power of contrast. If you can muster the strength and courage to let go of an unfulfilling relationship, you will soon see just how much precious time and energy you were wasting on something from which you were not reaping any reward.
Another gift a failed relationship can give you is the power of vision. By finally realizing what you don’t want in a partner, you can focus on building your vision of what you do want in a partner. You can now focus on what points of compatibility you desire in a partner.
For the gift of a failed relationship to really be useful, you must decide to bless the relationship and let it go to make room for the type of partner you desire and also to free your previous partner to find a more appropriate mate. In reality, there are no “failed” relationships. Begin to view past relationships as incredible gifts; some relationships offer more incredible gifts than others but gifts nonetheless. As the saying goes, people come into our lives for a reason, a season or a lifetime. We may never understand or know why we were in a particular relationship. We may never understand or know why people come into our lives and then leave. What I’ve learned is that if a relationship isn't working, it is not a bad thing or a failure as we have been trained to believe. It is merely that you, and perhaps the other person have learned what it is that you were supposed to learn by being in a relationship with that other person and it's time to move on to other "lessons." The purpose of all relationships is to help us to grow--personally and spiritually. Even the most painful and ugly relationships can be gifts in learning more about ourselves, strengthening of our intuition and learning to accept the truth when we see it. The greatest gift of a past relationship is that you now know what you really want in a mate. So instead of looking at a relationship that didn't work out the way you had hoped as a failure, I suggest you look at it for the gift that it is.
Copyright Carmin Wharton, 2007
Author, Lessons Learned: While Looking for Love in All the Wrong Faces