We talk about limerence and love-bombing. We talk about moving too fast and wearing rose colored glasses.
I’ve moved too fast. I’ve worn those glasses. The advice to slow down felt arbitrary at the time. Perhaps it was because I still don’t pay much attention to it.
- Take it slow.
- Wait X dates before sleeping together.
- Date multiple people. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.
- Don’t make it official before X time.
- Wait at least a year to get engaged.
For what? Says who? And why?
“What we’re doing right now feels good. We feel good. Why stop that? You sound afraid. We’re not afraid”.
...I’d say before I got burned.
I was almost 30 before I realized the advice that did work for me.
Go at the pace of the truth.
In friendship, romantic relationships and otherwise, go at the pace of the truth.
The flags are when I find myself or the person I’m interacting with making claims we can’t back up with any real evidence.
When I find us getting so excited we’re suddenly committing to an idea instead of reality.
This happens in little moments.
We claim someone is honest before we see how they handle being tempted to lie.
We claim they’re kind before we’ve seen them angry.
We claim we work well together before we've actually had to do hard work together.
We claim they’re fair and just before we’ve seen how they face up to injustice.
We claim to have great communication before we've had to have hard communication.
We claim they’re loving before we’ve seen how they wrestle with opportunities to hate.
We claim they’re emotionally available for us before we see how they navigate opportunities to lean into the discomfort of vulnerability. (If it isn’t uncomfortable it isn’t vulnerable, it’s just transparent and there’s a big difference).
We claim they’re committed to a certain kind of life or relationship with us before they’ve taken any real steps to show it.
Then when we do see the evidence of reality, which we always do because it's always there...
But when we see it and it doesn’t feel good, we make exceptions. That doesn’t count.
Then we both claim we’re ready for the next step before we’ve accepted the truth of the step we’re currently at.
So, you want honest relationships? Keep an eye on the truth.
Don’t try to control it. The truth isn’t here to be controlled. It just is.
Our job is to notice it, accept it, embrace it, and let it guide us.
This isn’t fun advice because we think the truth is less romantic. Less magical. Both of these are false.
The truth is every bit as romantic and magical as we hope to find.
But magic, real magic, isn’t painless. It requires strength and it’s often as ugly as it is beautiful. It doesn’t discriminate the way we want it to.
And it isn’t here to be safe. It’s on us to learn to handle it safely.
This is why we shy away from the truth. Because the truth isn’t easy.
So we run from it. Try to brush it under the rug.
We dismiss the truth as if that makes it go away, but the truth never needed our permission to exist.
We’re just setting ourselves up to be blindsided by it later, at which point we’ll follow the script like we always do, “I should’ve trusted my gut.”
Why didn't we?
Because aligning with the truth has its costs and everyone isn’t equipped to pay up.
The truth lets us know where we won’t get the outcome we were hoping for and we have to have the capacity to grieve this.
We have to fall in love with the truth. Grief and all.
And personally, I've found it critical to not to fall so in love with an idea that I find myself falling out of love with the truth.
Because the truth cares for me.
It tells us what our standards really are, and the kind of life we really want to live.
It can tell us where to set our expectations and our boundaries accordingly.
It can tell us when to slow down. When to pause. When to pivot. When to have hard conversations.
It tells us when to relax a little. When to lean in. When it's safe to dream a little. Dare a little. Reach a little. When to commit fully.
When to trust, and when to fall back.
The truth tells us what’s real. What we can really count on. And who. And when.
It tells us when to come home to ourselves before we get lost in the clouds.
It guides us through the ebs and flows of relationships. Of life.
And it reminds us to notice when we don't know something and stop pretending we do.
It highlights the things we’re still figuring out. It reminds us not to make those old claims too soon. The ones we keep getting in trouble for jumping to.
It reminds us to have some patience. To wait and see before jumping to decide.
So you want to stop the love bombing? Stop the limerence?
You want to take off the rose colored glasses and know you’re not moving “too” fast?
You want to limit the unpleasant surprises?
Stop attaching yourself to the idea more than you attach yourself to the truth.
Fall in love with the truth, and you give yourself a chance to fall into true love with your true people and the true life you create with them.
P.S. I'm now interviewing potential clients starting early & mid March. Click here to see what it's like to work with me.