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Fall in love, they said. You’ll live happily ever after, they said.  Well, I’m not exactly sure who “they” are and why so many beautiful, intelligent, otherwise bad-ass women continue to listen to them but, they do.  I think it’s because deep down in our most private and somewhat toxic thoughts we all want to believe in an eternal, ever-after kinda love.  While that seems like it would be a dream come true the reality is, it doesn’t really happen like that if it even happens for you at all.  The feeling of being in love and the reality of it are in fact two completely different things.  Unfortunately, for many women this fact isn’t truly realized until they are knee deep into a toxic relationship they can’t seem to let go of, or can they?  In a day and age where women are working tirelessly to find themselves, trying to define their paths and live a purpose filled life; it’s probably a good time to stop holding onto toxic behaviors, toxic mindsets and toxic men who distract them from the happiness they truly want for themselves.

 You Put Yourself Last

This is such a common mistake women make and it has no bearing on the man she is with. This is a toxic behavior that is taught and passed down through generations. Listen ladies, self care doesn’t make you selfish.  Making time to do something solely for yourself or ensuring your needs and desires are a priority is the most healthiest way to show others that you are important too. How many times have you been upset because no one seems to ever think of what you need or help you out in any way?  9 times outta 10 it’s not because they don’t care, it’s because you’ve shown them through the many sacrifices you make that their needs are more important than yours.

You’re Always Unhappy

Nothing about your consistent unhappiness is a sign that you’re living the dream.  In fact, you’re probably living in a nightmare and are too depressed to be able to do anything about it.  Remaining in a toxic relationship where your feelings aren’t being considered or flat out ignored can make you miserable.  Happiness is an inside job however, if the person you are sharing your life with isn’t interested in seeing you smile and adding value to you as a whole, what purpose do they really serve?

You Forgive Everything

In relationships, no one will be perfect.  If you choose to move forward in your relationship no matter the transgression, fine. That is only a decision you can make however, understand that forgiveness only frees yourself from the hurt, it does not immediately change someone else’s behavior. Be careful not to offer your forgiveness prior to seeing the results you want to see or before you have taken the time to start to heal. You’ll run the risk of being resentful when things don’t change immediately after they say, “I’m sorry”.

Your Pride Won’t Let You Leave

At the end of the day a relationship should be a fulfilling, love filled and friendship based arrangement.  Sure, some days will be boring or more challenging than others but, that shouldn’t be the normal.  You also shouldn’t feel obligated to keep up appearances while waiting for better days to come. You have a choice to work together or work on yourselves, alone.

You Settled

You are not required to loose your vision for yourself as a result of falling in love. When you discover who you truly are, the love you have for yourself will be reflected in the love you receive from others.  Don’t settle for mediocrity in yourself or from those you claim to love.