Relationship Advice: Should You Listen to Your Heart or Your Gut?

By Jackie Pilossoph, Editor-in-chief, Divorced Girl Smiling, Love Essentially columnist and author

relationship advice


The heart falls fast. The gut, on the other hand keeps it real. So which one should you listen to? In this week’s Love Essentially column, published yesterday in Chicago Tribune Pioneer Press, I offer relationship advice on these two organs that are constantly battling it out.


Should You Trust Your Heart or Your Gut?  by Jackie Pilossoph

It’s been one month since the world watched boxing world champions, Floyd Mayweather, Jr. and Manny Pacquiao in “The Fight of the Century.” The match grossed $410 million in pay-per-view revenue and turned out to be the highest grossing pay-per-view event in history, which shows how much people really do enjoy a good fight.
There are two contenders not in the ring, but rather in the human body that I think make Mayweather and Pacquiao look like best buddies. They are the heart and the gut. These two organs are constantly battling it out when it comes to dating, relationships and love.

The heart is constantly showering you with details about how wonderful and perfect the guy or girl you are dating is. The heart rejoices in love, romance, and a bright hopeful future with the person. It minimizes, defends and rationalizes anything negative in the relationship. The heart will never tell you that Mr. or Ms. Right is wrong for you because the heart only sees and feels the things you want to see and feel.

The gut, on the other hand, has no problem telling you if the relationship or the person is wrong for you. The gut is the devil and your best friend at the same time. The gut won’t lie. It won’t sugarcoat. It won’t make excuses. It will tell you to run the hell away from a relationship that won’t make you happy in the end.

If the heart and the gut were having a conversation, here’s how it would go:

Heart: “I’m so in love with this guy. I’ve never felt this way before.”

Gut: “Yes you did. You are divorced. Remember your husband?”

Heart: “This is different. This guy makes me feel happier than I’ve ever felt in my life.”

Gut: “But just last week, you suspected he was with another woman.”

Heart: “I did not.”

Gut: “Yes you did. Should I call your girlfriends and ask them to refresh your memory?”

Heart: “Fine, but I was just being paranoid. This guy truly loves me. I can see it in his eyes and I feel it in his kiss. He would never cheat on me.”

Gut: “Two things. One, he cheated on his now ex-wife. Need I say more? Two, remember the other night around midnight when he got a text, jumped up, read it, turned his phone over on the table and started kissing you?”
We all have a heart and a gut boxing it out in our bodies every single day. In other words, with every relationship, we weigh the bad and the good, the positives and negatives and the pluses and minuses. The things he or she does that make us crazy in love are measured against qualities or circumstances we either see or choose to ignore.

There are many times in my life I’ve wanted to tell my gut to butt out and just let me enjoy what my heart was telling me, but I couldn’t. My gut was too powerful. On the contrary, looking back on other relationships, I wish I would have trusted my gut, and told my lovesick heart it lost the battle. I’d have experienced a lot less pain had I been so wise.

The harsh reality is...Click here to read the rest of the article, published yesterday in Chicago Tribune Pioneer Press.

Buy novels by Jackie Pilossoph



Featured Expert Articles

Jackie Pilossoph Jackie Pilossoph
Creator, Editor-in-chief, Divorced Girl Smiling
20 Things I Wish I Could Have Told My Newly Separated Self

20 Things I Wish I Could Have Told My Newly Separated Self

Elaine Koby Mossr Elaine Koby Moss
Vice-president and Senior Advisor, Vestor Capital
Want Financial Security After Divorce? Here’s Your Checklist

Want Financial Security After Divorce? Here’s Your Checklist

Dan Stefani Dan Stefani
Divorce Attorney, Principal, Katz & Stefani
Thinking About Divorce? Here Is Your Legal Consultation

Thinking About Divorce? Here Is Your Legal Consultation

Jeremy Woods Jeremy Woods
Senior Residential Mortgage Banker, CIBC
Your Mortgage And Divorce: 4 Reasons To Refinance ASAP

Your Mortgage And Divorce: 4 Reasons To Refinance ASAP

Leslie Glazier Leslie Glazier
Real Estate Agent, @properties, Certified Real Estate Divorce Specialist
Hiring a real estate agent

11 Questions To Ask When Hiring a Real Estate Agent During Your Divorce

Jackie Pilossoph

Editor-in-chief: Jackie Pilossoph

Divorce is a journey. Live it with grace, courage and gratitude. Peace and joy are on the way! Jackie Pilossoph is the creator and Editor-In-Chief of Divorced Girl Smiling. The author of the novels, Divorced Girl Smiling and Free Gift With Purchase, Pilossoph also writes the weekly dating and relationships advice column, “Love Essentially”, published in the Chicago Tribune Pioneer Press and the Chicago Tribune online. Additionally, she is a Huffington Post contributor. Pilossoph holds a Masters degree in journalism from Boston University.

2 Responses to “Relationship Advice: Should You Listen to Your Heart or Your Gut?”

  1. Sadiya

    Love the article! The gut/heart convo is so on-point. Oh, and only if “…had I been so wise.”

  2. Amma

    I just went through this..he blamed his family, mine, our children, grandchildren, and me. Said he had not loved me in years – except that we has a beautiful 38th wedding anniversary this year. When I called him out on it, he looked guilty and walked away. I decided to check out our financials and found out there was only $800 in checking and $1350 in savings. I decided that I couldn’t deal with this so I proceeded to confront him. It’s been hard.. I have good days and bad days but I am much more at peace.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *