Are You Protecting Yourself From Love?

Love, Heartbreak

Holding onto past hurts can block you from finding the love you truly want.

Your exes could be the number one thing blocking you from finding love today.

We're not saying it is their fault. No one needs another reason to hate their ex; however, the choices you made after your break-up are probably getting in the way of you finding true love.

Creating love requires you to be open and take risks. When our heart is broken, most of us want to make sure we never feel that pain again. We never want to feel the hurt and the betrayal, the sadness and/or the shame, or even the anger that resulted from the break-up.

Unfortunately, it's exactly that desire—the desire to never feel those bad feelings again—that keeps you from taking the kind of risks required to create lasting love moving forward.

Love is not something you can create from a sense of lack. Lasting love and healthy love requires a thriving mindset. It requires you to see the possibility in someone. It requires you to risk having your heart broken—again. It requires you to be courageous enough to be vulnerable.

If you are limiting yourself because you want to avoid the pain of the past, then you will make safe choices. Many of our clients come to us because they are divorced from what we call the "Should Guy." They tell us how they felt at the time and their reasoning for having married him: "I should marry him because he loves me so much." "I should marry him because he is a good provider." "I should marry him because he would never cheat."

Sadly, they discovered that settling in love was not the answer to creating lasting love. They wanted romance and passion along with a good provider. They wanted to be as crazy about him as he was about her. They wanted someone who would make their heart skip a beat when they walked in the room.

Avoiding pain is no way to create anything in life. When you are focused on avoiding the pain, the truth is that you're still caught up in the pain.

The anger you felt when your partner cheated on you is still present when you're adamant that the most important thing is that your new partner can be trusted. The hurt you felt when your ex was emotionally unavailable will still be lurking in your subconscious when you focus on your next partner being able to express his emotions and communicate how he feels.

The negative emotions you're trying to avoid will rise to the surface when there is an issue in your new relationship. You will over-react with anger, or hurt over a small issue between the two of you. Or perhaps you will not give an honest partner a second chance over miscommunication because the pain of a past betrayal has now multiplied and you feel you can't even trust yourself.

The key is to take the time to heal the wounds from those past relationships. Release the negative emotions from your past heart breaks and discover what your negative patterns have been. Perhaps even find the gratitude for your ex so that you can learn and grow. When you can be grateful for all of your exes, you will only then truly be on the path to a great love.

Remember, if you're protecting yourself from pain, that same shield will also block out the love you desire. If you want to create a true soul partnership you will have to let love in.

More breakup advice on YourTango:

How To (Finally) Get Over Your Breakup And Move On

Help! My Last Breakup Scarred Me For Life

How To Get Over A Bad Breakup