When lost baggage is a good thing

We all carry some baggage — as in emotional baggage — when we date and enter new relationships. We all schlep some from past hurts with lovers, parents or others who were influential. Sometimes we haul hurts inflicted by strangers.

Dalai lamaI’m a little wary when a potential suitor says he has no emotional baggage. Unless he is the Dalai Lama, but I bet even he would say he has some (being the enlightened being that he is).

I’ve borrowed a phrase I read in some wise man’s profile, “I’ve gotten my baggage down to carry on size.” I love this as it says you know that we all have baggage and that while much of yours is released, you know you still have some lingering issues to work through.

baggage.jpgThe challenge is to be aware of the baggage you have left to release and make your partner aware of it, too. Then he can know if your reaction is to him specifically, or to some past pain.

Some people think they don’t have baggage, so don’t know there’s anything left to release. If you get upset about something trivial, like traffic, bad drivers, someone a few minutes late, then you have baggage. You need to work through why these minor irritations cause you strife. No doubt, it’s linked to something in childhood where you felt you weren’t understood, were dismissed, humiliated, or felt unloved.

Start noticing and perhaps logging, what triggers you on your dates. If he’s late, do you make that mean he’s a flake and disrespects you? If so, that’s baggage. The truth could be he got caught in traffic or just didn’t plan well enough. Start noticing and losing your baggage — on purpose.

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