What does the word ‘relationship’ really mean? You’re connected to everyone and everything; in other words, you’re in relationship with everything in existence. The world is a mirror, into which you look and observe yourself experiencing. Fun, eh?
Breaking this concept down, whoever comes into your life is an expression of some aspect of yourself. Every meeting (re)presents an opportunity for growth and expansion. The key to healthier relationships with others is to get clear on your own patterning.
The reason you may be attracted to toxic or unhealthy situations is because they’re in some way familiar, and feel comfortable (even while they also feel very wrong). The familiarity can be extremely subtle, so unless you can look honestly and consciously at the root of the pattern in yourself, you’ll continue to draw in the same thing repeatedly.
You’re an energetic being, picking up information from thousands of sources every day. All of these are unconsciously added to the way you define yourself in the world until you realize this is the case and work on remembering the core truth beneath.
Let’s look at a specific example. Abuse is surprisingly common, and comes in many forms. It’s often described as a cycle, which speaks to the nature of unconscious, ingrained patterning.
If you grow up in a household where the underlying message is that you’re unworthy of love and respect, that’s the normal you’ll know. The beliefs that started as someone else’s were deeply entrenched in your body, mind and spirit, and have become part of your own underlying belief system.
Once the seeds have taken root, they grow freely, and become intensified by continued reflections of the truth of them. In other words, if you believe 100% that you are unworthy of love and respect, that becomes the basis for your way of being in the world. You’ll then draw to you reflections of that, which become evidence; your beliefs attract external support to prove to you the ‘truth’ of your beliefs.
The challenge is consciously acknowledging that your beliefs are the attraction point. This is not to say your belief in your unworthiness is true. It’s the opposite – it’s causing the experiences that compound your belief in it.
How do you break free from the seemingly endless loop of belief-echoing experiences? You begin to change your story, one small step at a time. Everything begins (and ends) with you. I’ll repeat that, because it’s vital; everything begins (and ends) with you.
It takes courage to acknowledge your own accountability and responsibility when all you’ve experienced have been unhealthy relationships. Taking responsibility does not mean claiming fault for having been abused. Being accountable does not entail excusing or claiming ownership of others’ bad behaviour. Personal responsibility and accountability are steps towards your empowerment and changing old patterning.
You can allow yourself to be accountable for not having set boundaries as clearly as you would have liked. Did you compromise your boundaries to keep the peace? Now you can take responsibility for your beliefs and mindset going forward, because once you know, you can choose differently.
If your past relationships have resulted in outcomes you didn’t love, use them as fodder for growth. The common denominator in all of them has been you, and you’re the only one you have the power to change.
In my own experience, I noticed a repetitive pattern of non-committal men in relationships. It wasn’t until I turned the lens on myself that I realized my own core beliefs of being unworthy of commitment were drawing that dynamic to me.
It wasn’t an easy realization; actually it hurt like hell, and involved some deep grieving and healing. It was also one of the most beautiful experiences in my life. This catharsis began a process of accessing and facing the false beliefs so that I could remember the real truth at my core: pure, shiny, glorious Love. This is the truth that exists at the core of ALL of us.
It takes courage to examine your patterns and beliefs under the microscope of truth. You’ll find things that are not remotely comfortable and you might find things that make you cringe. You’ll also find the beauty of you, underneath the layers of ‘stuff’ that’s been piled on from the outside, from family, institutions, experiences, you name it.
Once you find the beauty within you, make it the belief you build on. You’ll see changes in every aspect of your life.
* I am the author of this post. You may find the original version, which was used with my permission without attribution, on Your Earth Angel (yourearthangel.com) *