As you get older (year by year, if not quicker), looking at yourself in the mirror, does your face match the picture you have of yourself in your mind’s eye?
Many don’t like looking at themselves in the mirror as they get older (40, 50, 60… ). They would have preferred to stay young for ever.
But even if your face is changing, it might well be that you yourself are not: you keep “doing” life and relationships the way you used to until now; you are motivated by the same fears and needs which have driven you until now; you apply the same self-sabotaging behaviors in your dating and relationships, same ones which have caused you to fail so many relationships.
So why do you continue with the same old patterns of behavior? Why don’t you change while your face – and probably your body – change?
The reason is simple: apparently you don’t have too much control over your face and body. They progress through the regular path of nature, of maturity, which makes them change (often to your dislike). But your emotions and behaviors could be, if you so wish, under your control. They don’t change unless you choose to change them. They are constantly the same unless you realize they might cause you more harm than good in your dating and relationships and decide to make a change.
This all means, that no matter how old you become, the way you “do” relationships might be consistent over the years. If you are a controlling person, you keep controlling your partners; if you are a manipulative person, you keep being manipulative; if you are submissive, you keep being submissive; and if you are escaping being alone, you will keep “falling” to whoever crosses your path, just so that you won’t be alone.
The sad side of this story is that no matter how often such behaviors and tendencies of yours have hurt you and sabotaged your relationships, it looks as if there is no way you can run away from them. The reason being, running away from them is almost like running away from yourself. They have become an integral part of you; rooted in your emotions, attitudes, behaviors, found refuge in the subjective perception you have developed towards yourself and towards your partners.
Why don’t you change if it is you who sabotages your relationships time and again? The simple reason is, you are unaware of the fact that you are the one to blame. You often find it easy to blame your partners (and/or external circumstances) rather than look inside and take responsibility.
No one likes to blame himself/herself, and if you are like everybody else (even though you might think you are different), you too wouldn’t like to blame yourself for the failure of your relationships. Instead, you might come up with one thousand and one reasons for failing: this partner wasn’t the right one for you; the timing wasn’t good; another partner has carried on too many problems from the past and a third one was too demanding, or too needy, or too who-knows-what!
All these might be true. But this is only part of the picture, part of the reasons why your relationships fail. A major reason might be – that you are the one responsible for the failure of your relationships. You see, as much as you might think you want to have a nice, satisfying intimate relationship, it just might well be that you don’t know how to develop and maintain one; that you are not aware of whatever fears, needs, attitudes, unhealthy reactions and behaviors you bring with you to your relationships, which eventually make them fail.
Indeed, admitting that this might be the case might not be easy. But how do you know this is not the case – that you are not responsible for the failure of your relationships – as long as you haven’t taken a good look at yourself, at your patterns, at whatever fears and needs control you and drive you, in one way or another, to hurt and sabotage your relationships time and again?
Looking in the mirror and seeing your face and body – even though you might not like what you see as the years go by – is one thing. Looking in the mirror and observing your inner self is much more difficult, but may be much more important in pursuing a satisfying relationship.
So as you continue to strive to find a partner with whom to develop a serious, loving and successful intimacy, the best you can do for yourself is look inside; become aware of whatever it is that make you fail, and get up the courage to make the necessary changes. It is then that you will become empowered to find a partner with whom to develop the relationship you hope for.