Stop Trying To Fix Broken People

Good Morning!  I want to get right into today’s blog post topic because I have been seeing links and posts related to this topic for the past week and it has been on my mind heavy to discuss my personal experiences as it relates to being the fixer in relationships. After going to a men’s only discussion this past Saturday, I realized that when men aren’t ready to be in a committed relationship, they will not put in the time and effort it takes for the relationship to work. Some may stick around for the sex or convenience of the relationship but their actions makes it clear as to what their intentions really are. In the past, instead of paying attention to their actions, (or lack of inaction in many cases) I would try to “fix” whatever I saw that was broken in them or their situation in hopes that they would come to the light and realize that I was the woman of their dreams. Now I don’t need to tell you how that worked out lmao but what I realized that instead of trying to fix someone else, I needed to fix what what broken inside of me.

Growing up, I always had self-esteem issues. I felt inadequate and less than all throughout high school because I was the quintessential geek (had the glasses, braces and awkwardness that goes with it!) even though I thought that I could start fresh by moving to Atlanta for college, those insecurities still lingered and exposed themselves when I entered into a relationship with my first boyfriend while in college. He was my first everything and because I thought that I didn’t deserve because him of his good looks and accomplishments, I ignored the warning signs that he exhibited early on. He had a terrible temper and would get mad at me for the littlest things and would be emotionally manipulative in order to deflect from his is flaws and misgivings. I was young and naive and didn’t realize how he used my inexperience and insecurities to his advantage so instead of speaking up for myself and knowing my worth, I attempted to fix whatever it was that was broken inside of him because I felt responsible for his actions (crazy right!). So when he would get mad at me for getting a flat tire after leaving the movies, (even though he knew the tire was already losing air and the trip to the movies was on my dime) I would accept responsibility and apologize profusely. When he accused me of flirting with another man even though I was having a casual conversation with the husband of one of my friend’s guests, I would get defensive and try to explain myself not realizing that this was his guilt coming out because he was cheating on me. My own brokenness and insecurities blinded me from the truth and when I finally saw the relationship for what it was and decided to leave, the damage had already been done.

In the relationships and situation ships that followed, I excelled at being “Ms. Fix It”. One of the guys I was talking to even nicknamed me “Angel’ because he felt that I was a bright light in his life and someone that he could lean on for support when things weren’t going right. In my last situationship, I desperately tried to get the man I was seeing to open up to me and let me in. He was obviously broken and because I loved him and wanted to see him happy, I settled and put my feelings and needs aside to accommodate him. It became a relationship of convenience because everything was fit around his time and schedule. I felt like an option and an afterthought and the insecurities that continued to linger from all those years ago started to come out and confrontations about why he wasn’t able to fully commit to me went nowhere. This was emotionally draining and went on for years until I finally realized that the only broken person I am responsible for fixing is myself. I cannot control what anyone else says or does but I can control the access I let them have into my life. When I decided to let him go and make myself a priority, a weight was lifted off of me. I was able to start doing the work that was necessary in order to rebuild my life and my self-worth and although I am not where I want to be, I am definitely doing a whole lot better than I used to. Relinquishing the title of “Ms. Fix It” has been liberating and rewarding and unlike the times in the past, I am the one that benefits from putting in the work!

I know that many of you are guilty of being the fixer in your lives. Fixing is not limited to romantic relationships either because so many of us try to fix our family and friends that are broken and we end up losing pieces of ourselves in the process. When your know better, you do better so I hope that anyone who is going through this understands that you should have to break yourself down to build someone else up. Much love to you all and I will be back with a new post next week. Have a great weekend and remember to love and live luxuriously!

Fearless Friday: My Blind Dating Experience

Good Morning! I had another idea for a post that I plan on discussing in the future but as soon as I saw the video of a project I was involved in on YouTube, everything changed! Last summer, I decided to step outside of my comfort zone (see what I did there!) and go out on a blind date. Simone and her co-producers created a dating docuseries called “Date to Date” and interviewed a group of people (including myself) in their 20’s and 30’s in the NYC area and asked about our dating preferences. After recording the information, they matched us up with people who they felt fit the desired traits that we mentioned previously and set up 2 dates with the chosen person in hopes that we would get to know each other a bit better and possibly connect on a deeper level. And they would be there to capture it all on film! I was matched with a really sweet guy named Wesley. Our first date consisted of us talking and creating our own salads. Simple enough right! We discussed our dream vacation spots, qualities we like in the opposite sex and a bit about our past relationships. You can view highlights from our date by watching the episode below (I have it cued to where my part starts bur I encourage you to watch the entire episode because its really good!)

 

I know you guys want to know what happened after our date and if I made a love connection. If you know me personally, you already know the deal but if you don’t you can check out today’s posts on my IG (@amoreluxe_) and FB (Angela Cherai) to find out the answer;) Special thanks to Simone, Essence and Malcolm of For Art’s Sake 125 for this interesting experience! New post coming Monday so be on the lookout for that! Until then, have an amazing weekend and be sure to love and live luxuriously.

Fearless Friday: What I Learned From Therapy

After receiving such great feedback on my last post, (click here if you haven’t read that post) I decided that transparency is my new thing. With that being said, I wanted to touch on something that I spoke about briefly in past posts but feel that this topic deserves its own post. I have been going to therapy on and off for 2 years and I feel that I have benefitted greatly from my sessions. It hasn’t always been easy and at one point I was hesitant to even admit that I needed help but I am at a point in my life where in order for me to become the best version of myself, I can’t be afraid of what others think or feel about the decisions I make that are in my best interest.

I started going to therapy 3 weeks after my grandmother passed away in 2017 and immediately questioned the decision. Even though I was depressed, I wasn’t suicidal or anything like that so why couldn’t I get out of the funk I was in? After many discussions with the therapist, it soon became clear to me that I was living in a state of constant fear and could not think about the future because I was too hung up on what happened in the past and how I was handling (or not handling) my emotions and how I responded to things out of my control. I always assumed that therapists were there to tell their patients what they should do but what I realized is that they are more like sounding boards where they listen to what you have to say and interject with questions that make you view the situation from different perspectives but they should never force any of their personal feelings on you. I’ve dealt with anxiety regarding my family, worries about relationships that have gone wrong and how I contributed to them and my fear of failure and feeling stuck and complacent in life instead of living it to the fullest.  I’ve had 3 therapists and with the exception of the second therapist, I have felt that I was being heard and that my feelings were valid which means a lot when you feel isolated from others because of the issues that your are grappling with. It’s okay not to be okay but don’t give up on yourself.

I feel like therapy is medicine for my mind and soul. Talking to an objective source who doesn’t know me personally outside of what I choose to share is comforting and has been helpful in easing my anxiety because I am able to share the things that I am stressed or anxious about without worrying about anyone judging me. It is medicine for my soul because every time I leave therapy, I feel lighter as if a weight has been taken off of my shoulders. Even if I leave without knowing exactly how I am going to confront an issue that I may be dealing with, I know that I am capable of handling it and just about anything else that comes my way. I don’t see myself going to therapy forever but it is an essential part of my life at this point especially since I am in a transitional period and being able to completely let go for those 45 mins each Tuesday has helped me to stay focused on my goals for the week. I hope that the stigma that’s attached to therapy can be eliminated in time especially within the African American community. Getting help from a qualified outside source for any issues you may be dealing with should not be perceived as weakness but strength because you know that you can be better and do better in life with a little assistance along the way.

How do you feel about therapy? What are your experiences if you’ve been to therapy before? Let me know in the comments! Side note: Make sure you subscribe to my new podcast with my homie DJ called “Weekend Friendz”. Click here to listen and subscribe! New post coming Monday but until then, always be sure to love and live luxuriously!

 

Don’t Be Afraid To Speak Your Mind

Good Morning! As I have stated previously, I want this site to be a safe space where we all can share our thoughts and feelings without judgment. I never want anyone to feel like they can’t be their authentic self because I know what it feels like to hold back and not feel as if I was being true to who I was and what I believed in. Having confidence wasn’t enough to lead a life with conviction and purpose. In order to be successful and live my life on my terms, I had to speak my mind and follow through with my actions.

One situation that comes to mind when I regretted not speaking up for myself happened when I was 20. I was very shy and passive and while I was on a trip to LA with a group of girls, we went to an expensive restaurant which had a huge bill that we all had to split. I put the amount that I was supposed to put in but was accused of not paying the right amount but instead of speaking up for myself, I caved in and added an additional amount to my bill. I was mad at myself after because I let peer pressure and the fear of confrontation silence my voice which a person should never do. I was young and naive in many ways but that incident taught me a lesson. If I don’t speak up for what I feel is right, I will be the one who suffers. That was a turning point for me and even though it took time for me to feel comfortable to speak my mind, I never put myself  in a situation where I allowed others to speak for me ever again.

I still try to avoid confrontation but if there is an issue that is weighing heavily on my mind/heart, I don’t hesitate to speak up regardless of what the consequences will be. There is a quote that goes “It’s not what they call you, it’s what you answer to” and any inaction or deterrence on your part speaks volumes about your character. Now I am not saying to start arguments or be difficult or disagreeable just because but if you really feel strongly about something and want to make it right, do not hesitate to voice your opinion on what you feel is right. This is something I have to remind myself of periodically when I feel wronged and I always try my best to be rational and logical about a situation and not base my actions solely off of emotion. Gotta find that balance!

Has there been a point in your life where you were afraid to speak up for what you wanted or believed in? If so, what did you do to change things around? Let me know in the comments! I’ll be back on Monday but until then, have a great weekend and be sure to love and live luxuriously!