Please find another excerpt taken from Chapter 2 called Start With You. I hope you enjoy and that some of this may ring true.
Chapter 12: Start with You
These are self-esteem battering and, at worst, abusive relationships and unless you want to keep experiencing the same death march each time, I strongly advise you take a deep breath, embrace a new approach and follow these steps to Mr Right. But first it starts with you and the way you perceive yourself; how you feel about yourself. If you are ready to be honest with yourself and do some soul-searching (it doesn’t have to be a long and arduous task) and embrace a new approach you are halfway there!
I have asked myself time and time again, ‘Why have I deserved this treatment again?’ and even wondered why the world was punishing me. Why were most of my friends settled down and living happy healthy relationships and lives and here am I trawling through painful relationship after painful relationship getting it wrong time and time again. What was wrong with me? Why couldn’t they see what a catch I was? I’m intelligent, loving, caring, independent, vivacious and positive. It took me over a decade to dissect the questions I was asking only to realise that I was asking the wrong questions. The question was not, “What was wrong with me?” but “Why am I attracting the wrong man for me?” The question was not, “Why can’t they see what a catch I am?” but “Why couldn’t I see what a good catch I was?” What was wrong with me was that I had allowed my sense of self-worth and self-esteem to be dictated and defined by the way these men had treated me. I had somehow subconsciously agreed that I had deserved it and in doing so kept on attracting the same type of man into my experience.
Now I imagine you’re reading this now protesting, “No I have a high sense of self-esteem and self-worth!” I did. Well if that is the case why do we keep attracting and staying with the same kind of unavailable men who hold us in such unsatisfying and negative situations? The answer is; it is us. It is we who are holding ourselves in this unhappy and unhealthy situation, we who have chosen this path and we who have chosen this man. What we need to ask ourselves is, “Why have we chosen this particular man and path?” and “What are our expectations?” Do we deep down, expect these men to walk away from us, to hurt us and abandon us or do we expect this man to offer us an equal loving and stable relationship based on honesty and mutual respect? If we are expecting the latter and getting the opposite and stay what does this say about our sense of self-worth; our sense of self-esteem? Equally if we are expecting the worst and receive the worst and stay put the same question can be posed, what does this say about our sense of self-worth; our sense of self-esteem?
Belief systems are deeply ingrained beliefs we have about ourselves and the world around us. These are created and formed at an early age and affected by experiences and events we experience. Our belief systems can be affected by the way we are treated by others or made to feel. They can also be affected by other peoples’ opinions or perceptions. For example, if a child is told by people in “authority” or “authoritative positions” over and over again that they are clumsy, thick and will never get anywhere it is most likely the child not only hear these words, they will ‘feel’ these words and associate these words with themselves. Every time they hear them they begin to believe these words apply to them. They will live out these words and most likely fulfill these false prophecies formed by someone else’s misguided opinion. If they are told they are “unlovable” as a child and they experience a lack of love from those who are meant to love them, most likely they will find it harder to accept and believe they deserve to be loved just for being who they are. Perhaps they will try and change who they really are in order to fit in or conform hence deep in their deep belief system they believe that in order to be loved they must conform; they must not be themselves. How long can a person live this way, concealing who they really are? How can a person really truly love themselves if they cannot be themselves? Truly. How healthy is it to live your life believing that to be loved you need to live by someone else’s standards? Everyone deserves to be loved. No one is any more or less worthy. However, when we live through these kinds of experiences without being fully aware of the affects upon our own thinking or sense of self we become littered with false and dangerous belief systems that have been dictated to us by those who, quite often, already have negative belief systems about themselves.
If we as a child have been abandoned or neglected, we may as adults suffer from a deep seated fear of abandonment. We may fear that everyone we become close to will eventually leave and abandon us. We may end up catering so heavily to somebody else’s needs that we forget our own. This relationship is unhealthy and based on the belief system that you are not worthy enough to be loved. If you have not placed your needs, wants and desires high up on that ladder of importance why would or should anyone else? I am a big believer that whatever we thoughts we hold in our belief system we will attract. Like attracts like. That what we focus on the most will always transpire into our conscious lives. Have you ever been in a situation when you’ve feared the worst and when the worst happens you say, almost triumphantly, “I knew that was going to happen!” Well of course it did it’s what you believed to be true! In the past, the relationships I had attracted and the men I had chosen perfectly matched my deep rooted belief that I didn’t deserve to be loved and that I will eventually be bitterly let down. Well at least a perfect match! How could I possibly be a victim when I have simply attracted what I believed to be true?
Change your thinking and your thinking will change you!!