By Kim Phillips

We’ve all been there. The phone call, e-mail or coincidental run in (especially likely during the holidays!) with the ghost (or ghosts, if you will) of boyfriends or girlfriends past. Some stir fun, pleasant memories worthy of a catch up. But others make us wonder why we answered the phone, opened our email or even left the house.

Regardless of how you feel when you run into that blast from the past, though, the past can be an iffy place to visit. Sure, a stroll down memory lane can be a harmless way to resolve old conflicts or to confirm your ex’s permanent place in jerkville. But a walk into the past… now that’s just asking for trouble. So, if a significant other from your past has come for a visit, tap into your inner, balanced chick (no matter how unbalanced the encounter can make you feel) and keep looking forward. You have grown and changed and moved on for a reason – and there is no reason for a second glance in that rear view mirror!

Here are five tips to keep you strong when you get the urge to stroll down memory lane…

The Relationship Ended for a Reason. Don’t spend too much time in what-if land contemplating if you made the right choices yesterday, a year or ten years ago. You did. Your gut told you it was time to split or you were told your significant other had to split. Either way, things happen for a reason and you moved on. Today you are a better person because of it.

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Why Go Backwards? Been there done that. While it can be fun to reminisce on old times and relationships, we don’t want to permanently hit rewind. Life is about learning and moving forward and we don’t want to get too caught up in yesterday. The past is exactly that: past. So even if your ex is Brad Pitt, it’s time to move on girl!

 

Don’t Second Guess Yourself. Your gut never lies. Don’t over analyze the past. If you have an ex trying to talk you into remembering how wonderful a relationship was (that wasn’t!), don’t let him or her drag you into yesterday with them. Smart girls look forward to the future!

 

Girls Night. This is a sure way to distract you from the allure of walking back into the past. It’s also a great way to be reminded of how smart, sexy and special you are!

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Your Future is Calling. This may sound cliché, but there are far too many fish in the sea for you to settle for your first boyfriend from high school who cheated on you or your college sweetheart who up and left without a word. These may be extreme examples, but you get the gist. Your past is awesome because it made you the woman you are today. But the person you were when you were in that past relationship is not the same person you are today.

So, when you get that voicemail, email, or run into that ex, remember that you have made all the right decisions and moved on. You’ve listened to your gut, which will never steer you wrong, and you’ve learned valuable lessons. All in all, you’ve gained. So why repeat the same lesson twice that you’ve already mastered? You’re in the driver’s seat, so keep those eyes on the road ahead!

 

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