Here are 5 Tell-Tale Signs That Your Relationship Isn’t Going Well and That It May Be Time to Move On
Do you sometimes find yourself wondering if your relationship has run its course, and maybe it’s time to call it a day, end things and move toward what’s next for you?
After investing the last 40 years coaching and mentoring thousands of people all over the world, I’ve been asked several times,
“Mary, I feel like my relationship has lost its spark. Do I stay with this person? Or should I break it off?”
If you’re asking this same question of yourself now, I can relate! I’ve been there myself.
My first husband and I married very young, and had two small children right away.
After many years of marriage and several years of marital counseling, it became very clear to me that things just weren’t working.
We didn’t have the skill set to communicate effectively in a way that we both felt heard and respected.
So, we decided to pursue a different kind of professional help to support us in co-parenting our little boys going forward, even though we decided we weren’t going to be together anymore.
We signed up for a new kind of counseling program that lasted 30 days.
And, the program went so well for us, that the 30 days turned into 21 more years… and two more children together!
But years later, we found ourselves in the same spot as before – wanting to divorce.
Sometimes relationships are simply meant to come to an end, and that’s okay.
During those 27 years together, we spent a total of nine years in therapy working on constructive ways of serving the relationship as well as ways of assessing if the relationship was or was not working.
In fact, it’s because of those nine years of getting help that I knew when it was time to leave.
Between my years in couples’ therapy, the ending of my own marriage, and the coaching and mentoring I’ve provided to others for the last several decades, I’ve identified…
The five tell-tale signs that it may be time to end a relationship
1. You’re in some kind of danger
First and foremost, if you’re not safe in your relationship, you need to leave right away. This may include immediate physical danger to you or your children, or danger in a more subtle form.
Perhaps your spouse has a gambling addiction or has racked up mountains of credit card debt. These behaviors truly put you and any children you may have in a very risky and unstable position.
So before anything else, get yourself into a safe situation – go and stay with a friend or family member, for example – and then consider your options from there.
If your safety is compromised, your relationship isn’t serving you whatsoever.
2. You don’t share the same core values
Perhaps one of you wants kids and the other doesn’t. Or you have dramatically different religious beliefs that inform how you live your lives.
Consider what’s most important to you in life and how you’ll feel when you lay your head on your pillow for the last time. What will you be glad you invested your time and energy in?
Then ask yourself if your partner feels the same way. If not, you may not want to share the rest of your life journey together.
This isn’t to say you have to share the exact same interests and passions – everyone is a unique individual. But if your values aren’t aligned, you may not ever be entirely fulfilled by this relationship.
And the truth is, sharing different values doesn’t make either of you wrong or bad people!
It can just sometimes makes you a poor fit for one another.
3. You’re not heading in the same direction (or are even on the same road) when it comes to your goals and dreams
Again, you and your partner are going to have your own unique goals and dreams, which is part of what makes any relationship interesting!
But do your individual goals and dreams help fuel each other’s? Does your partner’s pursuit of their dreams help yours come alive? If you’re both doing what you love, you’ll bring even more energy and joy to the relationship.
And do you have some shared goals and dreams?
You don’t have to have all the same goals and dreams, but some have to align if you’re going to build a future together. Do you both want to own a home or to travel the world, for example?
Ultimately, do you see yourself in the same place, each doing things that create a thriving, flowering relationship? If so, wonderful. If not, it’s may be time to move on.
4. You know deep down that you’ve left no stone unturned
If you do make the decision to leave the relationship, be sure that you’ve tried everything possible to make things work with your partner.
In some ways, it’s easy to leave, but the questions and regret that may come afterward can be terribly difficult.
You don’t want to be in a position years later where you ask yourself, “I wonder if I could have tried harder?”
After you leave, the opportunity to work on and save the relationship will most likely be gone.
Oftentimes, it helps to give yourself a 90-day window before making a decision. Commit to being fully present in and working on the relationship for 90 days, giving it your full energy and intention. After those 90 days, you’ll have a much better idea of where you stand and what to do.
So right now, ask yourself, “Have I truly tried everything I can to salvage this relationship?” If you have, it may be time to move on.
5. You’re in an emotionally-centered place when it comes to ending the relationship
Make sure that when you do end the relationship, if that’s what you choose to do, that you’re doing so out of an emotionally-centered place within you. There’s no anger, there’s no resentment and there’s no blame.
Recognize that you have a right to be you and that your partner has a right to be them.
Wish the other person well, without anger or resentment.
Wish them happiness and do what you can to have an attitude of gratitude about your time with them, however ready you are to leave.
If you leave without bitterness and resentment, you’ll be able to live your life much more freely and joyously moving forward.
It can be a very difficult decision to leave a relationship
Ultimately, you always have the choice and power to do what is best for you.
Making difficult choices that ultimately serve your highest good will foster a more expansive existence for you and help you continue to make good choices in all all areas of your life.
Remember that many relationships can be repaired and strengthened with the right mindset and dedication.
But at the end of the day, you are the judge of what’s best for you, and if it’s time to move on, then your life will grow and blossom when you do.
Would you love to experience more compassion and gratitude in order to cultivate a happier, healthier, more abundant life? If so, here’s my FREE gift to you!
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