Photo: Getty ImagesIn 2003, my girlfriend and I broke up. We'd been together for two years-we were practically engaged-and had been friends for years before that. After we parted ways, I entered a long period of heartbreak. Like any person who's been rejected, I thought, Man, what's wrong with me? I tried to figure out which of my own flaws had kept us from having a successful relationship. But in my gut, I knew my mistakes. My ex had a lot of power and presence, and that had made me less assertive about my own needs. I had sacrificed parts of who I am to avoid conflict. When you're not sticking up for yourself, things start building up.
About three months after the breakup, I was really feeling the loss when something dawned on me: It wasn't just in my relationship that I'd let myself be overshadowed. Even with my managers, my mentality was, It's all about your needs. When they wanted me to try out for a TV show that paid good money, IRead More »from Author-Rapper Common on Learning From Your Break-up