Analyzing What Went Wrong

If you were perfect, relationships would be easy for you, right? But we live in the real world, where things don't always work out the way we planned. You can get angry and blame that stupid ex who doesn't know what she's missing. Or you can acknowledge that maybe you could do some things differently in the future and possibly have more successful relationships.

For some ideas about how to change your dating patterns, look at what went wrong with your previous sweetheart.

Recognize What Didn't Feel Right
As they say, hindsight is 20-20. When you have some time and distance from your previous relationship, you may be able to see clearly some aspects that just didn't feel right. Was it her neediness? Your unwillingness to open up about your feelings? Her public displays of affection in front of your family? Your public displays of lust for your ex-girlfriend in front of your current one? Whatever it was, try to strategize on how to avoid making the same mistakes next time.

Acknowledge Your Weaknesses
So maybe what went wrong is attributable to a normal aspect of your personality. Do you like to sit back and let your girl take care of you? Did your ex see that as laziness? Or do you try to make all the plans yourself and then your girl feels like her preferences are not being heard? Of course you can't totally change your personality, but if you tell your sweetie that you know you have room for improvement in a particular area, then perhaps she'll be more understanding because she knows you're working on your issues.

Be True to Yourself
As much as it's admirable to try to improve over your past relationship performance, you still need to be yourself. But strive to be the better version of yourself this time. It won't work to pretend that you don't like football and don't care about hanging out with your friends every Sunday during the NFL season. But you could set aside a few Sundays when you're willing to go on a hike with your girl instead. You won't be happy denying your interests, but you'll be happier if you respect hers as well.

As you get closer with your new sweetheart, remember the popular quote from W.L. Bateman: "If you keep doing what you've always done, you'll keep getting what you've always got." In other words, if you want things to turn out differently with your new girl, you have to approach the new relationship differently than the last one. In this case, change is good!

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