Most of us will move through life with the prospect of one day meeting someone we want to spend at least a good chunk of time with, if not the rest of our life.
The need for a deep human connection is what bonds us all. Whether we acknowledge it or not, we all long to be heard, to be seen, and to be loved.
Love in that way is a great equaliser.
So we look for that person who will make us feel whole.
And while we do this what we don’t realise is that there are internal dynamics at play within us. Some of which we are conscious of and some of which we are not.
Those dynamics can both be pretty obvious, but also very subtle.
They include impressions left by witnessing our parents’ dynamics, how they relate(d) to each other, and what kind of partnership they role-modelled (or not). It also includes the way our main caretaker responded to our physical and emotional needs. It can be based on our early life and love experiences.
It can also be more subtle, like how you internalised dominant cultural messages around marriage and your position as man/woman/non-binary.
Depending on how you filtered this information, you then did a natural selection of the qualities you witnessed and labelled them as either desirable (e.g. being in a good steady marriage is good/the right thing to do) or not desirable in yourself and in others for your survival (eg: I never want to be a housewife/marriage is a trap/being unsure is bad etc).
And from this lens, you start seeing the world, and the people around you and acting following those principles.
And don’t get me wrong, this is a wonderful survival strategy.
But if it doesn’t bring you the kind of connection you truly long for in your relationship.
Or it doesn’t help you attract the kind of partner with whom you can learn about love.
You know it’s time to change strategy.
Then you have two choices really.
Firstly, you can try to control the outside, the externals, the relationship(s). Or be in that constant quest for the one who will make you feel whole.
So the temptation here might be to change partner or try to control your existing partner if you are in a relationship. Or think ‘there is no one out there for me’ if you are single.
But in the long term, this strategy will fail you.
It will fail because you will keep repeating the same patterns operating from a place of survival, as opposed to freedom, expansion, possibilities, the ‘anything is possible’ kind of feeling.
Which means you will keep getting the same disappointing results.
So how do you start creating YOUR ideal relationship?
This is the wonderful question that Carl Jung the (in)famous swiss psychiatrist I root my work in helps us address. The answer is you make the unconscious conscious.
In practice, this looks like – exploring what’s happening for you internally that is contributing to you getting those results. And this applies to love, and it applies to all forms of relationships.
And this is why relationships are such a wonderful vehicle of self-growth and self-realisation.
Because they help you see what you would otherwise not be able to see in yourself.
So yes, relationships make us feel whole, but not in the way we think of them in our dominant western culture.
Relationships are in service of your wholeness, but your wholeness comes from within.
So if you are not getting the connection, the fun, loving, committed relationship you want, or you are stuck trying to figure out whether to commit or not.
Or you are experiencing high levels of anxiety in your relationship* or simply not able to meet partners with whom you can settle down with.
You can continue all you want to try to change the externals.
Or you can change strategy & start curiously and compassionately exploring what’s going for you internally.
I am not going to lie this is not easy work, but with the right kind of support you’ll be amazed by the results you’ll get.
And if this something you are wrestling with right now, I am currently working on my new 1:1 coaching offer which will help you uncover your inner barriers to connection to create the fun, loving and committed relationship you want free from fears, worries and anxiety. Stay tuned for more!
And as always, I'd love to hear from you.