Last week, I climbed onto my Peloton bike, excited for Ally Love’s Whitney Houston-themed ride.
As I pedaled it out, the song “Where Do Broken Hearts Go” came on. I was about to take a sip from my water bottle, but instead?
I burst into tears!
A sobbing, blubbering mess, I belted out the lyrics:
“And if somebody loves youuuuu, won’t they always love youuuu?”
The Taurus in me wishes that were always true.
So I’m writing to you today with a bit of a vulnerability hangover. Bear with me.
If you haven’t guessed, I’ve struggled with trust and loss over the years. Sometimes the people I trusted weren’t all that trustworthy. Certain friends I loved unconditionally turned out to be super conditional. Folks I poured into were only there for the money and the ride. People I thought really liked me only liked my perceived coattails.
I bet I’m not alone.
I bet you know what it’s like to show up with love and trust and be surprised to find out that you misjudged the situation.
I bet you know what it’s like to share your big goals and dreams with people, only to have them mock you or play “devil’s advocate.”
I bet you know what it’s like to feel lonely in a crowd.
I bet you know what it’s like to experience soul-crushing betrayal.
Years ago, I was betrayed by someone who (I thought) was a very close friend. There have been other betrayals since then, but this particular one was heartbreaking and shocking. Occasionally, the memory still stings.
Disappointment and betrayal come in many flavors, but we do not have to let these experiences shut us down.
We can use the burn to polish our crown.
By agreeing to lead with an open heart, even when we want to close off from the world.
By staying optimistic about new friendships and partnerships, even though some of those connections have swung to a heartbreaking end in the past.
By strengthening our existing boundaries and setting new ones, helping us to spot “red flags” and better tap into our intuition.
By remaining generous – to others and to ourselves.
And by taking ownership of the situation, asking ourselves, “What role—if any—did I play in creating this situation? Did I ignore my intuition? Overlook a detail? Fall into people pleasing? Lower my standards? Fail to enforce my boundaries?”
Taking ownership doesn’t mean that you’re taking the blame. It’s about taking an honest look at the situation and determining how you might be able to prevent it from happening again.
YOU are in charge of your life, no matter what is happening around you, and no matter who betrays you.
The good news is that you get to run the show—deciding who gets to be a part of your life and who doesn’t.
This is why I run communities and host retreats and events—because we need community, and we need each other.
The next time you’re feeling the sting of betrayal, throw on some Whitney Houson, have a good cry, and know that you – only YOU – get to write your next chapter.