Have you ever wondered why you are attracted to certain people? Why do you feel a strong pull towards one person and have no attraction at all to another?
As a former couple’s therapist, I used to give clients an exercise that took twenty minutes and could save them years of unnecessary relationship struggle. Whether you’re in a committed relationship or are looking for love, this exercise can change the way you view relationships from now on. If you’re interested in customizing it to yourself so you can see why you’re attracted to him or her, I’ll share a link below where you can get a free copy.
Essentially, it helps you break free of unconscious patterns in a relationship by addressing them at the root, within you. It helps you see what you most value in a relationship so you can consciously nurture those qualities, and it also shows you what conditioned patterns you unconsciously play out that block you from receiving the love you want so that you can avoid this from happening again.
As children, we learn about the world, ourselves and what love is, from our caregivers. We end up attracting people who mirror both our parent’s negative and positive qualities because we think what is familiar is safe, even if it’s not healthy.
None of us are immune to negative experiences in our childhood. There is no way our parents could have been there for every moment we needed them in the ways we needed them. We all carry wounds of disappointment, not being seen or being hurt, emotionally or physically. This is not about making any of it wrong, this is an opportunity for you to free yourself from replaying old wounds in your current relationships. Obviously, none of us would choose to consciously attract a partner that mirrors the negative traits of our parents. We logically want to be in healthy, fulfilling relationships.
However, by attracting a partner that also mirrors the negative traits of our parents, our partners give us the opportunity to bring up and heal our old wounds by meeting that hurt with the compassion and love that it longed for when we were young.
These wounds are dormant within us but our partners have the perfect way of bringing them out, have you noticed? Instead of being stuck in blame, thinking they ‘made us feel this way’ where no change can happen, this exercise will help you gain the awareness of what your wounds are so you can begin to shift them. You’ll feel more grace and freedom in your relationships because you won’t need to unconsciously play the same fight anymore since it’s complete within you.
Triggers typically begin to come up when the ‘honeymoon phase’ of the relationship is over. At this point, most people either leave the relationship and serial date, thinking something is wrong with the people they are attracting, or they stay in the relationship but blame their partner.
Fights happen in a relationship. They aren’t the problem. What matters is how we move through the fights, or, if we move through them. You can use these challenging situations to grow stronger together because of them.
Biology is intelligent and has a plan. It gets us drunk on a cocktail of hormones like serotonin and dopamine in the beginning so that essentially we’re attracted and connected. It’s like ‘the bait and switch,’ because then the wounds come up since they’re looking to be healed.
None of this is bad, but it’s helpful to have the awareness of what’s happening and the tools to move through this gracefully and effectively. If you don’t have the awareness or the tools, you can end up unconsciously hurting each other. But, if you’re well-equipped and open, you can help each other grow and heal together and ultimately experience more ease. After the bulk of the healing phase is worked through, your relationships become more about celebration and love.
That said, you don’t need to be in a romantic relationship to do your inner work to heal and complete these patterns. You can do this if you’re single and attract a whole different level of relationship because you’ve already healed it in you so you no longer need to work it out with another.
If you are in a relationship, and your partner isn’t interested in doing this type of work, you could also do this on your own and it will change the dynamic you play out with them. If one person in the dance changes steps, the dance changes. If this happens, you will either notice that you stop having the same fights, or you’ll no longer get triggered when they do the things that used you cause you upset. This is freedom, and luckily it’s up to you!
Single or coupled, when you do this work, you will feel a strong sense of empowerment as you gain awareness of what’s looking to be healed within you. You learn how to take responsibility for them and use them for your growth and healing. Awareness is the first step in supporting you to become more conscious in relationships.
It’s helpful as you see these patterns, to be compassionate with yourself. As you notice the themes of your patterns showing up in your life today, it’s an opportunity to bring conscious awareness to them so you can choose differently and connect in the ways you most desire. There’s nothing wrong with or bad about the old ways, it’s just worth the investment of your time and energy to see if they are actually working for you. If they aren’t, this is your chance to change and update them.
In this way, you realize you cannot be with the ‘right one’ since whoever you are with mirrors to you the same patterns in you that are looking to be healed. You can either work it out with them or wait to work the same patterns out with someone else.
I want to be clear, I’m not saying to stay in a relationship that’s abusive and am not giving the advice to stay or go. All I’m saying is that the triggers that are in you, are yours 100 percent and this is good news because that’s the only place you can change them.
And, if you don’t have a partner, you’re still with the perfect partner since all relationships are mirrors for yourself, and apparently, life is helping you see this more clearly by being with yourself. You begin to take your power back and show up for yourself in the ways you wished someone else would. There is such a gift in seeing this. Everyone is a mirror showing us how we can love ourselves more fully.
You are so supported in changing these patterns so that you can keep your heart open, experience deeper connection and ease in your relationships.