Hello beautiful people, my name is Athol, talking about marriage, relationships and getting what you want from them. In this episode I’m going to talk about one of my stock pieces of advice that I tell many, many people which is not to do The Thing.
The Thing is after a divorce or a major relationship breakup, immediately jumping into a new relationship too quickly. That is The Thing. You get divorced and then three months later you are deep into dating somebody else.
The reason I tell people not to do The Thing is that after a big breakup, after a divorce, you’re usually completely emotionally exhausted by it. Also, you can be financially exhausted in the case of divorce. When you’re in that really low energy state, you tend to attract someone into your life who is also at some kind of low energy state. That might be a temporary issue for them or it may be a more chronic issue for them. So if you get in a relationship with someone that is in this low energy state as well, you tend to set yourself up for a relationship that is low energy. You can end up missing the red flags that would be completely obvious because you’re just too tired to really see them.
There’s also the thing where just because your relationship has ended, doesn’t mean there’s not necessarily some more work to do in terms of the way you approach things, how you think of things, your own mental health. It’s often going to be difficult to work on some of this stuff if you’re immediately caught up in the whole dopamine rush, in love, new exciting person. You end up not building supports into your own life where you are self-supporting and are stronger and better for yourself, you end up trying to build a life with this new person who’s not necessarily going to be ideal long term.
The other reason that people jump into these relationships is they are lonely, hurt and they need validation. All these strong drives that propel you into trying to find somebody new. They’re all very, very real and sometimes you can miss red flags, because you are just so needy for that sense of love and support. In that moment of pain anyone can be good enough, as opposed to finding someone who is good for a long term relationship or even good for a short term relationship.
So there’s often this thing after a breakup where people get involved with someone who’s kind of a transitional person. And sometimes that transitional person is them and sometimes (against your will) that transitional person turns out to be you. So there’s a whole bunch of pitfalls.
So have this canned speech, which you’ve just heard now, of don’t do The Thing.
Except when I give the speech about not doing The Thing, it turns into this little play that we do where the person I’m giving advice to says their lines and I say my lines.
(This is only the transcript, it’s more fun if you watch the video from 3:38 onward.)
So we start off in a pretty good place. I’ve give you lots of good advice. You’ve gone through your relationship. It’s ended however it’s ended. You’re feeling stronger, happier and healthier.
Then because I’m old and tired I give you the advice about not doing The Thing.
You look at me’ deep in my eyes and you promise, “I’m not going to do The Thing.”
A few weeks later or a few months later you tell me, “I’ve just met this wonderful person. It is just absolutely fantastic and I’m doing the thing.”
I say, “Wow, I’m super happy for you. That sounds fascinating.”
And then you go off and do the thing and it plays out as it plays out and at first it’s really good. And then it’s a little bit rough around the edges. And then it really gets bad and overwhelming, and you tell me about it and I say, “Alright well let’s get together. Let’s do some more advice. Let’s do a coaching call.” And we try and sort our way out and get you back on your feet again.
It used to be that seeing this script play out was incredibly frustrating. I used to get so annoyed by it at times when I would spend all this time telling people “Don’t do The Thing” and then they go do The Thing and it would blow up on them. Then I went through a period of feeling sad by it. What is the point of giving advice. Everyone is just going to ignore it and go do The Thing.
Now I’m accepting of it. I still feel like I need to give the advice, don’t do The Thing, and I generally wait for people to go do The Thing, because I said before there’s such powerful drives to do this and if I can stop a few people from having truly epically bad results then it’s win but most people are going to go do The Thing and there’s not much I can do to stop it.
So I do feel obliged to give the advice, but if I’ve given the advice to you and you come back to me and you tell me, “I did the thing and it ended badly.” I’m never going to tell you I told you so. I’m just going to pick up the pieces, going to try and sort things out, try and get you back on your feet, pointed in the right direction and getting to a place where you’re going to be happy and healthy and things are going to go well for you because that’s truly what I want.
I mean what I want for you is to be able to live long and prosper. So that is the advice for today… Don’t do The Thing. Tomorrow I’ve got a video where I’ll talk about when is it time to start doing The Thing. When is it time to get back out there? When is it time to meet people and get up to speed again, because it’s not like I want you to live like a monk forever.
And that’s about it. I will leave it there. Hope you liked the video. Until next time, like, share, subscribe, comment, all that good internet stuff, and I will talk to you tomorrow.