Breaking Up

There’s a reason they say that “breaking up is hard to do.” The mere prospect of ending a romantic relationship fills most of us with dread, doubt, and heartache. Here, we share insights to help you approach future separation decisions with clearer vision and greater compassion, plus perspectives to help you learn from past mistakes.

This week on The Living Experiment, we’re talking about Breaking Up — the factors that shape our decisions to end a romantic relationship, and the strategies that can make that a somewhat better experience for all involved.

We talk about the difficulties of knowing when to call it quits, the pains involved with that process, and also some opportunities that decision represents.

We share some of our own break-up insights, and as always, we offer you some experiments to help you evaluate your own breakup experiences in ways that serve your relationships now, and in the future.

“Breaking Up” Episode Highlights

  • Pilar and Dallas share their personal breakup experiences, and the wisdom they gained in the process
  • The cycles that occur in most long-term relationships; and the fear of failure and scarcity that keeps people in unhealthy, doomed situations
  • Skills for getting through the lows that might otherwise result in a breakup, including compassion, communication, self-respect, emotional intelligence and a willingness to be vulnerable
  • How to know when a breakup is the best, healthiest option (hint: there’s no simple answer)
  • The importance of understanding and admitting your responsibility in a troubled relationship, and of forgiving yourself and the other person if it ends
  • Leaving (and staying out of) abusive relationships
  • How one person in a couple can make a difference

Examine your past breakups and look for patterns. Can you regard the other person with more compassion and take some responsibility (if you haven’t already) for the dynamics that brought on the breakup? And can you have compassion for yourself for doing the best you could at the time? Think about how these insights might help you in your current or future relationships.

Look back at your past relationships, and think about the points of friction that led you to end them. Is there a pattern that points to something you don’t like about yourself? Is it showing up in your current relationship, or do you want it to be there in the future?

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We’d also love to have you connect with us on Facebook. Tell us about your experiments, and share your thoughts, stories and reflections there.


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