If you’re reading this I am sending you so much virtual love. Having an ex consume your thoughts can be confusing, frustrating and honestly a little torturous. I know the experience all too well. For nearly two years an ex was the first thing to enter my mind upon rising, he showed up in my thoughts unexpectedly throughout the day and just when I thought I had finally moved on he would show up again. On an intellectual level I knew he wasn’t the one, he wasn’t interested in a committed relationship, something I desire and he had been honest with the fact that he didn’t feel the same way and yet the thoughts of him made me second guess it all and a part of me, maybe you relate to this.
For a long time I was frustrated with myself for thinking about him. It wasn’t until I released this judgement, stopped shoving the thoughts of him down and started to question why he was still hanging around that answers came. When I released judgement, a space was created for the lessons, triggers and wounds to surface. With time I’ve come to understand that it wasn’t him I couldn’t get over. He was the vessel in which my lessons needed to come through and until I learned the lessons, he remained. I’ve learned a lot from being obsessed with in an ex and I hope through this journey you will be able to bring the subconscious to the conscious and finally move on.
All relationships in our lives are our teachers. I like to think of it as lessons in the form of romantic partners, friends and family members. This may be a tough realization but on a spiritual level you likely called this ex in for a lesson you were ready to learn or as a subconscious belief system.
Your life lessons are unique to your beliefs and your wounds. Relationships may show up to teach you that you can’t fix everyone, or to stand up for yourself or to help you uncover belief systems that are no longer serving you such as “all men are cheaters” or “there are no good men in the world”. If we get on board with the idea that we’re calling our partners in based on what we are putting out into the world then we are empowered. We can explore the possibility of shifting our beliefs and healing our wounds to call something better in. I’ve learned the hard way that ignoring the lesson will only make getting your ex out of your head harder so here are some tools to help you speed things along.
Step one to fully releasing this person is recognizing what lesson they are bringing to the table. Remember life is happening for you, not to you. There is growth and magic waiting for you in these lessons. Start by diving into why you manifested this relationship by asking yourself the following questions.
- What feelings or voids did that relationship fulfill for me?
- Do these feelings remind me of anything? Is there a childhood experience or past relationship?
- What do I believe to be true about love and relationships? (Note if this doesn’t match what you’re calling in maybe you need to dive a little deeper into the subconscious)
- Does the person I called in remind me of any other relationships in my life? Family? First loves?
- What void was this person filling for me?
- What wounds did this person trigger?
We call in what we believe to be true, what we believe we are worthy of and what we need to learn. You may have had a parent who cheated when you were a kiddo and now a subconscious part of you believes relationships lead to infidelity. Consciously you might not have realized your fear of attracting a cheater did just that. Others may struggle because that person was so spontaneous and playful that they believe they’ll never find someone as fun yet the lesson is that they need to cultivate more play in fun within themselves. Maybe you’re like I was subconsciously afraid that committing to a relationship will leave no time to chase your dreams. This fear of commitment leads you to attracting emotionally unavailable partners.
Understanding the lesson on an intellectual level is step one. It’s usually not the last step to releasing an ex. Step two is recognizing the wound. When we have wounds that have been triggered it can make a relationship extremely addictive. It feels passionate and it can make us a little obsessed. That feeling is a very difficult to let go of especially if we don’t recognize it for what it really is. When we see the wound they were triggering we can see these feelings are unhealthy and not real. When we work to heal the wound they are no longer triggering it and we can finally release them.
Your wounds are shaped by your life experiences and the meaning we’ve applied to those experiences. Often wounds are established in childhood or during our first relationships. Understanding your unique wounds will not only allow you to start to heal and release that ex but it will also help future partners understand you and prevent triggering and obsession in the future. Explore some of the following questions to start uncovering your unique soul wounds:
- Is there anything traumatic that happened in childhood that might be playing out in my relationships today? Bullied? Death of a family member? Anger in your household? Abandonment?
- Did anything traumatic happen during my first relationships? Cheating? Manipulation?
- What makes me feel angry, jealous, sad or judgemental?
- What are my wounds?
Wounds can be triggered in our relationships in many ways. For example let’s say your father abandoned you and now in relationships when someone starts to pull back your wound is triggered. You end up clinging tighter to this person terrified they will repeat the abandonment. The chemicals released from this stress response creates an obsession within you. Maybe your parents were extremely busy with work and from a young age you found yourself, the oldest, taking care of your younger siblings. Now you only feel valued in a relationship when there is someone to fix, parent or nurture. You find yourself calling in partners who are projects even if they aren’t really ready to be fixed. Maybe your story is like mine, you were bullied as a child and today you find yourself placing your worth and value on others approval. You don’t believe someone can truly love you and you believe on a subconscious level you’re flawed. You call in partners that just aren’t that into you or don’t treat you very well because on some level you don’t believe you deserve real love.
At this point I hope you’re seeing some patterns. The third step is to work at healing those wounds. My all time favorite healing technique for wounds is inner child work. Inside each of us is the younger version of ourselves who is wounded or holding onto beliefs. We can reparent that little one since our subconscious doesn’t actually know the difference between what we envision and what’s reality. By talking to our younger selves we can create new beliefs and heal old wounds. Here’s how you can do your own inner child work:
- Grab a journal and a picture of your younger self.
- Think about how your little one felt when the wound formed. Journal around this, letting any emotions flow out. A tissue box nearby may be necessary.
- Next have a reparenting conversation with your little one. He or she likely needed to hear something she didn’t get when when went through this experience. This will retrain your subconscious and help you release the wounds and beliefs.
- Here’s an example of what that conversation might look like: “Little one I know you are hurt and feel so alone. It’s ok to feel that way. Know you are perfect, exactly as you are. You are so loved, exactly as you are. Those bullies were hurt themselves and took their pain out on you. I know it’s not fair and what they said means nothing.” It might sound silly but trust me this stuff works.
- Next time your ex pops into your head assess if your little one is being triggered. Continue to have these reparenting conversations.
The fourth and final step to releasing your ex is to let go of your expectation of when you’ll finally be over them. I know, not what you wanted to hear. There is no forcing and controlling this unfortunately it will likely only make things worse. By forcing and controlling you give the situation focus and where focus goes energy flows. I did all the inner work. Yet, he continued to show up. Frustrated I kept pushing him out of my thoughts hoping he would just go away. I had to release my expectations for the last lesson to present itself.
This lesson was the hardest for me. For a bit of background I’ll share that when we originally parted we ended it with a maybe one day we will be on the same page. It was a sliver of hope my subconscious held onto. When more stable relationships lacked passion or weren’t triggering my wounds, I would think maybe he was the one. Consciously I knew I deserved a partner who cared about me, who didn’t ignore my texts and who was ready to dive into a conscious relationship but the thoughts were there. It was time to do something about it. I needed that door we left open to get slammed shut and in order for me to do that I had to get vulnerable, I had to get real and I had to open myself up to the possibility of rejection. I am not the type of person who likes to openly admit my feelings especially when there is the possibility of rejection. The little girl inside of me hates rejection after years of being bullied.
I put myself out their, I got vulnerable and admitted I couldn’t get him out of my head. Rejected I was. It was so hard. I sobbed on my floor, I was embarrassed I had reached out in the first place and I felt just like the little girl in grade school whos crush just called her fat and told her no one would ever love her. I picked her up, I held her, I let her cry and I told her she was so worthy, so beautiful and perfect exactly as she is.
The following few weeks I woke up and went about my days feeling lighter, more peaceful. It didn’t hit me until about a month later, he’s gone. The final lesson revealed: rejection has nothing to do with you. It doesn’t make you unworthy or broken. It doesn’t mean something’s wrong with you. It just means they didn’t feel the same way and that’s ok. You are still beautiful, incredible and so worthy of love.
The lessons aren’t always fun. They aren’t always what we want to experience but they will set you free. I believe this chapter has finally closed for me. I believe the heartbreak was here for me. I believe these lessons have provided me with the consciousness to enter an incredible relationship in the future. This too shall pass my dear. Hang in there, stay open and know your time will come as well.