Those who find themselves in relationship after relationship may also find themselves going through the same pattern again and again. They realize they are consistently picking the wrong people.
The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. Those who find themselves in this toxic pattern need to get free from it, but that is easier said than done. The first thing to do is realize there are underlying reasons why you keep making the same choices. Once you discover what those root causes are, then you can make corrections that prompt different choices.
A lot of things in our experiences prompt us down a certain path. Everyone needs to take stock of their past to see what is contributing to these bad choices. You can’t blame others or your past, but you can work to understand how it molded you in both good and bad ways to the person you are today. Once you deal with those past issues, you can move forward in a new direction.
There are several basic reasons why many people choose partners who just aren’t right. They are listed below.
- Low confidence
This can cause a host of bad decisions in relationships from choosing wrongly to putting up with someone who mistreats you. When you have low confidence, you attract and are attracted to others who also have low confidence. While you may bond initially over this, there isn’t a lot of giving in a relationship when both are that way. Neither will make the other a priority because both feel they don’t deserve high priority. There could be jealousies and other issues too.
Take some time to build your confidence. Take a kickboxing class or join a Toastmasters group. Learn that you are worthy to be loved and made a priority.
- Wrong Priorities
Some people put priorities on things like money or power rather than character qualities like honesty and kindness. This is a disaster waiting to happen. Those who get involved with someone because of materialistic leanings will have fun for a while, but eventually will resent the control of the other person. They will learn the dynamic is more like a business deal than a relationship and they have little to offer in negotiations.
That doesn’t mean those with money are bad people. What it does mean is the fact that you set your priorities on materialism will attract the wrong people. In other words, it will attract those who only care about money and power. That will translate to control over you and a lack of respect for what you bring to the relationship.
Take time to reprioritize your list. Write down what you are looking for and why. That will help you decide which criteria should go.
There are some people who simply love the chase. They will go after the one person who doesn’t want a relationship. There could be a variety of reasons for this. It’s exciting and thrilling. The idea of gaining the interest of someone not at all interested is an ego booster. It’s a game that requires strategy and that produces creative energy.
Even so, this kind of relationship is destined for heartbreak because that person either will not want to commit or you will grow weary when the chase ends in a commitment is expected from you. A stable relationship can be considered boring by someone who loves the chase.
Take some time out from relationships until your can lower your thrill level. Develop some friendships with the opposite sex instead. Make it a point to go slow if you date.
- Fixer Uppers
There are some people who have such a maternal or paternal instinct they seem to find and attract others who they think need fixing. Worse than that, they think they can fix them. It could be they meet someone who appears needy and that brings about compassion which turns into an emotional tie. It could also be they find someone who has some qualities they like but “would be perfect if” so they try to fix them rather than keep looking.
Whatever the reason, you can’t fix anyone and most likely will not have success. You need to see people for what they are right now and not expect them to ever change. They could change over a period of many years, but you can’t count on it. Even if they do change, it is likely to be a slow, drawn out evolution that will take decades. Either love them as they are or move on to find someone more suitable for you now.
- Closed Minds
There are some people who have specific lists of the person they want to marry. In some cases, the list is so specific that it would be impossible to fulfill. It is good to know what you want and even write it down, but be realistic about your expectations. If you are so specific that you want to look at anyone who doesn’t fit the list, you may be overlooking someone who could really make you happy.
The movie Practical Magic deals with bad choices in relationships and unrealistic expectations. In the movie, one character decides as a child that she never wants to fall in love because of the pain she saw her mother endure. So, being a witch, she creates a love spell that identifies the person she is to love. She makes it so specific and unrealistic that she feels the person could not possibly exist. If they don’t exist, she will never fall in love. The problem was he did exist, but not in the way she expected.
Change your checklist to be more broad sweeping rather than specific. Allow room for people who are different from you in some areas, but look for those who agree on the major points like religion or goals.
- Drama Seekers
Some people thrive off drama. Drama is thrilling and puts them in the limelight. It makes them feel like they are on a reality show. You get a lot of attention from friends and family when your relationship has issues.
This is not a good thing. It breeds a toxic relationship and ends up causing you stress. It will likely end with a fiery finale too, which results in anger, heartache and sometimes a restraining order.
Those who love drama need to refocus their lives where they aren’t the center of the universe. Do some volunteer work or get a hobby where you learn that you do not need to be at the center of every discussion. Once you learn to take the focus off yourself, then you can change your relationship habits.
You will be a better person to date and will attract a whole different group of people once you eliminate some of your choice issues. You will find just making a few changes will open up the dating world immensely. Then, you can hope to find love.