How to Get Over A Break Up

I received an interesting question. I’m playing catch-up with some questions as I’ve been really busy. It’s another relationship question. My contact email is on the sidebar for questions. People do know that my Ph.D. is in international relations not love therapy right? Anyway, human relationships are a fundamental part of everyone’s life, so I’m glad to write about it.

Question for Paul: Have you ever been dumped by a girl? If so, how did you get over it? I’m having trouble getting over a break up.

Yes, someone once broke up with me. I think most people have experienced this, even the most attractive people in the world. For example, I remember listening to the French actress Marion Cotillard talk about being dumped by her boyfriend– that was before she became famous– stupid guy, huh? Anyway, my situation happened over the phone– from a few thousand miles away. The relationship started out in person while I was in grad school abroad and continued when I came home to do research on my dissertation. We visited each other for extended periods in the U.S. and Europe and then, after a couple of years, she went to another location (country) for an internship and called me on the phone wanting to be free from our relationship. It was at the tail end of three years of work on my dissertation, so I had a lot going on and, ideally, didn’t want that kind of emotional distraction. But I focused on business anyway and got my work done.

How did I get over it? If you date someone for a few years and then it comes to an abrupt stop over the phone, it’s not so cool, but I went out with other girls. That’s how I got over it– that and a little time. When something like that happens, one can be emotional or hurt, naturally, but you have to tell yourself that it’s not meant to be, it’s over and done and then move on. There are plenty of girls in the world– a lot, and if someone wants to move on, smile and say, “Good Luck, see ya.” One way to deal with a break up is exactly like this:

Granted when my situation happened, I was a little more emotional than I would be with a few more years under my belt, but that is part of maturing and experiencing life. I also learned to focus on my career more and less on women or meeting the perfect girl for me. Why? Because I came to understand how to prioritize what’s important in life. If you are able to put things in perspective, I think other areas will fall into place. For instance, you want to get over your ex-girlfriend, so you might run out to the bar and try to meet other girls. No, that’s not what I would do. I would concentrate on your career, improve your spiritual life, make some money, and you won’t have to go searching for a nice woman. Fate will present her to you– or not. You have to trust destiny and see where it takes you, which can be really exciting.

In other words, God / spiritual life and then your career come before meeting a woman. Read my post Mirroring the One and then take a look at my post Be Happy. Count your blessings and be glad that you have the ability to meet another girlfriend.

Good luck.

La vie est belle, profitez de chaque moment.

The Internet and Your Career

Question for Paul:

I am looking for work. I notice that you speak your mind on your blog. What do you think about internet branding and web presence when it comes to a job search?

If you are looking for a job or career, then you have certainly come across all kinds of advice about your online presence. “Make your brand stand out! Watch what you say on Facebook!”

So, let me get this straight. We have, in theory, freedom of speech, but in order to be employable people have to craft a contrived image to make a decent living? As someone who wants to see the good in others, I find it hard to imagine that all employers are scrolling the internet to find blog posts or Facebook statuses to disqualify job candidates. Now, it’s understandable for human resources to look into a potential hire for criminal activity or crude / racist or disturbing behavior, but that’s where the investigation should stop. In a free society, we should be able to express our political, religious, and /or philosophical beliefs (outside the workplace, unless it is part of the job) — without it impacting one’s employment prospects. The only thing that should matter is the fundamental question: can this person do an excellent job? Does this person have skills?

Of course, a part of that question includes qualities that affect the workplace environment– for example, is he or she a good team player, does the candidate get along with people, can this individual communicate well? My philosophy is simple: be yourself, be authentic. I personally would not want to work for someone who didn’t want me to express my convictions on my own time. Of course, a software developer on the job is not going to be talking about politics, religion, or philosophy; however, that person should be free to express themselves in the community or online. In other careers, for example a political science / international relations professor, one should have the academic freedom to discuss political issues and give opinions on the job as well (it’s part of the job description), while always respecting the contributions from colleagues and students.

The bottom line is one should be concerned with being a top-notch engineer, professor, lawyer, sales clerk or whatever– and not worry about image-making or branding. You should be hired based on your skill set, and not on an online brand. Show the employer concrete examples of what you can do and the rest shouldn’t matter.

That’s my opinion. That’s what I think. In the words of the Hodgetwins, “It’s just advice, it’s only advice, you can do whatever you want to do!”

Good luck!

La vie est belle, profitez de chaque moment.