People have a difficulty with relationships primarily because they are afraid of getting hurt.
They are afraid of being a simp. They are afraid of being taken for a ride or taken for granted. They are afraid the other person’s feelings will change. They are afraid that their own feelings to their significant other will change. They are afraid of change.
They are afraid of breaking up. They are afraid of abandonment. They are afraid of their blind spot, ignoring red flags and making a mistake. They are afraid of introducing children into the equation if things go belly up. They are afraid of divorce, prenups and alimony.
They are afraid that the person they love will become someone they hate.
. . .
By virtue of being afraid of experiencing something, you’re probably going to walk right into it. You think that by taking a hard stance on some behavior or trait that you will avoid pain in the future.
But what tends to happen is that the subconscious mind sees your strong emotion regarding your anxiety or annoyance and hands it back to you.
It definitely sounds like a lousy mechanism when it is working against you, doesn’t it? But when it is working for you — it’s awesome.
. . .
With so many reasons to fear a romantic relationship, it seems incredible or perhaps incredulous that people would still put themselves out there. But this is also due to our subconscious.
When we observe someone who really wants a relationship, it may be an indicator that there is something inside that is unhealed. What they want is love, and a relationship is a means to get that love.
But when you dread something that you are desperate to avoid, you walk right into the path of someone who will show you the very thing you were trying to avoid. Why? Because the subconscious can only show you what you keep focusing on or what is being propelled by strong emotion. These things shape your identity.
So when you date the same person over and over again, that is your cue to look at these people and see what they all have in common and how they all triggered your anxiety.
By making this subconscious tendency into a conscious one, you are now aware of what you are doing and can make better decisions in your love life. And as I said earlier, when your subconscious is working for you and not against you, it’s brilliant.
Given the long list of worries and concerns I mentioned at the beginning, what do they all have in common? They are all fear-based.
When it comes to a romantic or love relationship, you can either look at it through the lens of fear or through the eyes of love.
Love is the default.
Love is the lens through which we naturally viewed things as children. We then learnt that love could be thwarted and that love could lead to pain. As a result, we then began to fear love. And for some of us, we learnt to fear the sex/gender we were attracted to.
The truth is that love and loving someone can never yield pain. What causes pain is when we hate or resist when people are not loving towards us or we perceive that people are not being loving.
Your dad leaves the family and starts a new one. Your mom yells at you for no discernable reason. Your sibling pushes you down and laughs. Your friend makes a mean comment behind your back. Classmates don’t want to be your friend because you are poor. Someone refuses to date you because you are overweight. You observe your parents fighting. You think that the bad things that are happening around you are because you are inherently bad.
These are but a few of the ways that you could be loving but your resistance to others’ resistance and fear can then make you into a resentful and fearful person yourself.
This is the mental pandemic we have been fighting for millennia and the only vaccine I’m aware of is to go within.
Your life has more than likely yielded a painful carousel of the same old, same old thanks to your subconscious programming. This is valuable information because now you know exactly what you are fearful of.
If you allow yourself to feel this pain instead of running away from it, you will heal and your subconscious will drop the thought because there is no emotion to propel the thought anymore.
Even if you were to come across someone who could trigger you in the ways you were triggered in the past, you would easily shrug it off because the wound is now closed. No one can pour salt on a closed wound and get a reaction out of anyone. There is no reaction whatsoever.
But there is something that is even more fundamental to look at. We need to sit with the notion and emotion that state that there is pain in love.
It is impossible for love to elicit pain because it is the opposite polarity — fear — which is the actual culprit. Love is what heals. Fear is what corrupts and destroys.
I understand that you may have been in love with someone or you loved a family member and they hurt you. But consider that the pain you felt when they did something unloving could have been avoided if you accepted what they did.
Consider that you wouldn’t have felt any pain if you didn’t judge their actions at all.
This is the irony that is often too painful to accept. Our problems aren’t necessarily with others. It’s often us. Specifically, it is our interpretations of what others do that get us into trouble.
It is totally natural to reject and resist pain. But the pain originates from a thought that we didn’t even think ourselves. It is the mind that conjures the negative thought and we buy it hook, line and sinker.
So in a way, it isn’t our fault. But we are the only ones who can deal with our issues.
If you associate pain and fear with love, you will continue to experience relationships with pain and fear. But if you sit with the emotion behind the specific fears you have regarding love, you can be set free and begin to experience love without fear.
You can begin to experience love with a significant other and with your fellow human beings, whether they are loving to you or not.
This post was previously published on Hello, Love.
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