Lately, the “experts” have said it’s okay to take medication and even consume certain foods that have gone beyond the date stamped on their packaging.
Instead of forcibly cleaning out fridges and medicine cabinets on D-day, we are given the “okay” to hold on to that can of vegetables, bottle of aspirin or even that carton of almond milk for up to a week after.
But when it comes to relationships, “situationships”, “getting to know you’s” or any other categorical term being used for the coming together and melding of two people: respect the expiration date!
How do you know when a relationship has reached its expiration date?
It’s revealed after red flags show up, deal breakers are presented and any other nuance that prompts us that our best selves will be in jeopardy if we continue on with said person.
Basically, do not pass go or collect two hundred dollars.
But what if you’ve been in a relationship for several years? Bowing out often is not easy, especially when time and emotions are invested. When your peace of mind and well-being are severely compromised, your internal clock will ring the alarm prompting that time is up.
Trust your clock. It knows what’s permanent and what’s temporary, how long to stay and when to go.
What happens when we don’t respect the expiration date? Just like consuming food and medicine that are past their peak can make us sick, extending a relationship meant to end can be just as destructive.
The destruction comes in the form of “Role Mis-assignment”.
It may have caused you to promote a male acquaintance who was only supposed to be just that to the position of “friend with benefits”, because you were lonely. Only thing is, now he met his “forever girl”, he’s moved on and you’re left to deal with the residual feelings.
Or, remember the guy you were supposed to let go of (because of the yellow and red flags he showed you) who is now residing in your heart, mind and soul… and maybe even in your house… preventing you from being free to meet the man who you’re really supposed to be with?
Role mis-assignment is one of the biggest mistakes we make in our day-to-day relationships (friendship included) and a by-product of keeping people in your life beyond their expiration date.
If you are having issues adhering to the end date of relationships that you know won’t benefit you, first ask yourself:
“What is missing or un-addressed in my life that makes me hold on to a situation that hurts me?”. When you identify it, ask God to fill those areas Himself, or better yet, show you how to fill them on your own.
Need more help? Talk to trusted friends or even utilize the assistance of a counsellor to help get you sorted out.
The goal here is to be a complete person wanting for nothing. And that means, having the courage and confidence to leave a relationship that will not benefit you (or even the other person) in the long run.
I’m not saying that certain relationships should never be promoted to the next level, but it’s the ones that simply do us no justice that must be ended “on time” for our own peace of mind.
Love yourself enough to respect the expiration dates on that which is temporary, in order to move on to the fresh and healthy experiences that are meant for you to have and enjoy.
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