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One day I was thinking to myself about all the relationships that went wrong in my past and I decided to give up trying to do it the “right” way. You see, the right way is the reason why I had found myself struggling my whole life. I found the need to do things the way everyone else would do them and not the way that worked for me. And I thought that maybe I was the only person that felt this way but I quickly found out that whether that was the case or not, it was silly.

Most of us live our lives in the reflection of everything around us. We’re products of our environment and that leaves us in a disposition when it comes to our personal lives. We fail to realize that our personal lives do not do anything for those around us but yet we consider it to be a decisive factor. That’s why one day I decided that I had enough and I was going to do things my way.

I thought that living for everybody else had run its course. I knew that in the end I would only have myself to blame for why things didn’t work out or why they did in fact work out.

I mentioned to a friend the other day that I would have no time for a woman’s insecurity in dating when it came to me. I didn’t want to do things in my life to live for what her friends may say to her or to coddle her own insecurities. She would have to find a way to be in the relationship between the two of us and not with everyone else who may be viewing the relationship and chiming in. I’ve felt pretty much from the time I left my college days that having everyone in your relationship was the utmost determining factor for failure in your relationship.

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And it comes out of me in the things I say about relationships now too. I tell people, what works for them is probably what’s best for them. While I may not have a relationship history that looks unconventional and I may be very traditional in my approach, it’s what works for me. I live by the thought that in the end if you are happy, that’s all that matters. Love isn’t a journey that’s examined for how you got there, all that matters is that in the end you’re happy. No one asks you to show your work when you reach that happy place.

Plenty of my friends and family have reached that happy place and they haven’t once stopped to wonder if it made sense to everyone else. They stopped only to think if it made sense to them. That’s the only people who matter. And as a people we have all these thoughts on whether someone should have done it the way they did it. We tell ourselves what we are willing to put up with and what we would have never gone through to be happy in the end. However, that only stops with the fact that it’s what WE would have done, not what THEY should have done.

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Left with all this, I gave it up. I also decided that I couldn’t be with anyone who thought that they couldn’t give it up either. I needed freedom to be myself and live my life. I needed to be able to look back on what I did and realize that I did for myself because all those other people wouldn’t be there to congratulate me on a job well done in MY relationships. Lastly, when I did this I felt a great sense of pressure had been relieved. I was okay with the approach and I was okay with any outcomes that may come out of it.

I guess what I’m trying to say is I made a personal decision to make my own happiness a personal decision. I stopped needing affirmation from external sources and I stopped asking myself, “How do you think that makes me look?” If there’s anything I can encourage you all to do is to follow the same path, if it works for you, and I’m sure you’ll find yourself in a happy place. That may be single, in a relationship, married, not looking or otherwise. However, it will be a decision you made. Those are the best to live with.