Baggage? I think it is safe to say that we all have baggage.
The amount of baggage we carry with us from one relationship to the next is obviously dependent on the relationship we are leaving behind, but we all have it to some degree. And the baggage we carry with us when we leave a relationship will inevitably play a role in how cautious we are progressing into our next one. If you were burned, cheated on, abused, or otherwise mistreated, you're likely to have more and heavier baggage. You're less likely to dive head first, more likely to test the waters. You're more likely to question, to think twice, and less likely to be vulnerable. The question is, are you letting your baggage ruin something great before it even takes off?
The thing with baggage is, much like a heavy suitcase being toted behind you in the airport, it can really slow you down. It affects the way you think, the way you move forward, the way you stand still, and the way you trust. It is there, heavy and reminding you to take it slow so you don't get hurt, to close yourself off so nobody burns you. It is there to remind you that what you should do, right away, before your heart gets attached, is sabotage yourself.
In a conversation with my dear friends Ashley and Oryan yesterday, about new relationships and moving forward from old ones, Oryan put it in great perspective. He said, "starting a new relationship so soon after one ends is like, a really good day at the gym...you're all in, you have a kick-ass heavy leg day, you are sweaty and intense...and then you need the next couple of days off, away from the gym."
He could not have put my thoughts into any better analogy. That's it! When you are carrying around baggage from your past relationships, you may take a couple of leaps forward...but then you slide backwards. Example? You're starting to see someone new, things are moving along, and then they introduce you to their best friends. You freak out, and you don't text or call them for a couple days. And that's fine. You're scared. You're worried. You're being bogged down with all those suitcases full of bull shit.
Baggage happens. Maybe your partner cheated on you, and now you're afraid to be too vulnerable. Maybe your partner hit you, and now you're afraid of being too dependent. Perhaps your parents got an ugly divorce and now you're afraid of commitment. It's possible that you picked up some of your best friend's baggage when they had an ugly break up. However it looks for you, it's certainly there.
We all have baggage. The question is, are you being honest about what you're carrying with you? Are you looking this new person in the face and saying, ya know what, I need to take this slow. I like you, I'm into you, you're amazing...but I gotta slow down. Are you being honest with this new person, or are you playing games? Baggage has a funny way of looking like a game, of sabotaging things for you, even making you look like an ass hole. So think about it for a minute. Who is in charge here, you, or the bags you're carrying?
If you're not the one in charge, maybe it is time to do something differently.