Have you ever felt like you always attract a certain type of person? I know I have! The same kinds of people seem to present themselves to me all the time. They may have different faces and different names, but in the end the same themes are always there. Not too long ago, I kept finding myself with an emotionally unavailable boyfriend; misunderstood people gravitated to me; needy people always wanted to be my friend; and if there was ever an underdog, we inevitably somehow teamed up. I found myself thinking, "What am I putting out there to attract these people to me?"
For a while, I arrogantly thought I drew these people to me because I had so much strength. Maybe I was supposed to help fix them? Like a moths to a flame, they were drawn to me because my light was shining for everyone who needed my help. Well, my believed strength did not make the boyfriends emotionally available; I was not able to build the self-esteem of the needy people; the misunderstood never gained any new insights; and the underdogs were still underdogs no matter what wisdom and examples I thought I shared. I was usually left disappointed, hurt, or annoyed. So why was I attracting these people?
This was particularly frustrating in the romantic department. After all of the books I had read, why was I still attracting these unavailable guys? I had consciously made an effort to send out the right kind of vibes, I visualized what kind of man I wanted in my life, I even created a vision board at one point; so what was I doing wrong? Because I was becoming so emotionally drained, I decided to turn off the light (which in retrospect I think might have actually been a bug zapper?) and be by myself for a while. It was time to get off of the merry-go-round and focus on making myself happy. I did not have a plan; there was no agenda; just me spending some quality time with myself doing things I enjoyed. I stopped trying to figure everything out, and things in my life seemed to calm down. I was feeling good, and I was happy! I was experiencing positive outcomes in my career, I was spending carefree time at home with my kids, and I resumed some of the pastimes I had inadvertently given up for a while. I made new friends at work, and the needy, misunderstood people did not seem to be around anymore.
When I felt at peace and wasn't trying so hard to make things go the way I pictured, my life felt right on track. Wow, what was I doing differently, I wondered? That's when it hit me: We attract what we are feeling, not necessarily what we think about.
Once I removed myself from the constant analysis of the relationships in my life and started letting things flow, positive results started to show up all around me. When I was feeling good, good things were happening! In order to extend this happiness on to my relationships, I needed to reconnect with myself and find the parts of me that brought me happiness. It was up to me to change the relationship I had with MYSELF before I could change the relationships I had with anyone else. I began to realize the strength I thought I had in relationships was actually a mask I used to hide behind when I was feeling needy and misunderstood. Because I was feeling disconnected from myself, I was the one who was emotionally unavailable, which made me the underdog in my own life. No wonder I was attracting these relationships! We can think about a strong, loving, emotionally giving partner all day, but if we don't feel that we are strong, loving, and emotionally giving ourselves, we will attract what we are sending out there.
Now I understood what needed to happen. I didn't need to fix other people; I needed to fix myself! Creating a loving and accepting relationship with myself allowed me to look deeper into what I believed about myself. I was able to identify the parts that I needed to heal, and through acceptance and a little forgiveness, I was able to heal the misperceptions I had fallen victim to and stop projecting them onto other people. The trick to attracting healthy relationships is to feel the love you are searching for from within yourself, to feel truly confident, and to know that you are complete. Take some time to reflect on the relationships in your life, and see what areas you might need to tend to within yourself. Relationships in our lives act as mirrors; when we have a loving relationship with ourselves, the reflection will always be the strong, healthy, loving relationship we deserve.
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