Loving Your Way to the Top

Doing What is Right instead of what is easy

As I was strolling through the park on my 10,000-step diet today, fumbling through Spotify; I stumbled upon Singer, rapper, and writer Dessa’s Deeply Human, podcast created by the BBC and American Public Media.

I typically don’t creep too deep outside of the urban culture when it comes to podcasting. And yet, because of my relationship woes I felt led to dive into randomly prescribed podcast (Deeply Human). As a believer of “There are no accidents in the Universe”; I opened myself up and decided to lick my chops and hear Dessa out.

By the way dessa has been covered by Pitchfork, Forbes, and The Wall Street Journal amongst others; so, she is super popular and before today I never knew Dessa existed.

Who would have thought a black married man in his 40’s would listen to a podcast from a Caucasian Minneapolis woman about; a podcast titled “Date less, love more? Why compatibility seems so hard to find.

Since I am a podcast newbie when it comes to the topic of dating meaning I have never listened to a dating podcast episode; I had no idea what to expect. There is a first time for everything. I recommend you go and check it out.

Now, for what I got out of this podcast episode that featured Barry Schwartz American psychologist and Professor of Social Theory and Social Action at Swarthmore College.

To those who wish to take a deeper dive into work go and read The Paradox of Choice “Why more is less”; as his work focuses on the intersection of psychology and economics which may be super timely given the Russia/Ukraine conflict, rising gas prices, inflation and all things cryptocurrency.

Nevertheless, Dessa’s podcast was about choice and the way we pick and choose our mates. To be quite honest I have never been good at choosing mates. I never studied what it meant to be in a relationship or my role when it comes to dating and finding the means for creating long-term commitments. Dessa’s podcast highlighted that for me.

After, finishing up the podcast and walking home I was reminded of a concept I studied in college years ago surrounding the “Science of Mating” and the importance of compatibility when it comes to choosing a life partner.

It made me think that I should have gone to college for a bachelor’s degree in Relationship Development instead of Business Management. I haven’t got this relationship thing right at all in my life; and I think it’s about time that I change course.

I am not sure if you have struggled to make sense of dating, marriage, gender pronouns and the like; but I do understand that much of that baggage that we left in the past left us with tons of emotional debt.

Allow me to share with you a few sentences of my journal entry for June 8th, 2022

“I have postponed my emotional problems thinking they would go away somehow. And yet, they follow me daily waiting patiently for me to do the necessary inner work to confront these issues. All of this stored anxiety must be expressed and brought to the surface. How in the world could I step into a real life-changing relationship having not addressed these emotional prompts?

I blocked the hurt because I couldn’t face the injury or its consequences. My hurt converted to anger and that anger to guilt. I do feel guilt a lot about emotional breakdowns that stemmed from my past relationships. I could have performed better or been a better friend. I let my sickness push away 3 lifelong friends that are supposed to be in my life today.

It’s the emotional debt that we must cancel out if we are ever going to move into this space of clarity. It’s the hidden emotions surrounding our disappointments and failures in relationships that needs attention. The Deeply Human podcast was befitting to my journey as I found myself in a conundrum of nostalgia.; where I needed an idea to help me process of thoughts around marriage and the single life.

Freedom takes time when it comes to your emotional state. As you progress upward through the relationship pipeline you may realize that you never addressed the baggage left by the missteps of faulty relational wiring. Its ok.

It’s just that those buried emotions need release from its coffin. Why? Because they were never fully addressed and then laid to rest. I will digress that some relationships are meant to be left in the past. I am speaking of bad breakups or infidelity that may be preventing you from loving, trusting your own need for love.

In the end, as David Viscott states “You are learning to live with another person”; and that means managing change within relationships, dealing with arguments, understanding infidelity, and signs that a relationship might be over or have run its course.

Do the work and don’t feel pressure to run to dating apps with realizing that there is more work to do on yourself. Take a hard pause after a breakup or relational situation so you can flesh out those bad ideas and clear the air.

If there is one piece of advice you should take from these lines of demarcation is to never “Overcommit in an effort to look like everything is in control”. Second chances in relationships are inevitable. Never flee the scene, hide your emotions, jump to a course of action without thinking things through, or create a skewed sense of timing. Always do what is right instead of what is easy.

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