After finally getting settled down into adulthood and conquering culture shock, I thought it would be the perfect time to write a blog post about why we are always chasing. Within the first two days back I have come to realize one thing that all human beings are inherently bad at: relationships. I feel like I have not met one individual who has not had some struggle. This is such a wonderful thing. If you are or have been struggling with a relationship, it’s 100% normal. We are wired for connection, without it we would not feel complete. I’m not solely speaking about intimate relationships, I want this to include friendships and everything in between the two.
One of the reasons that I think we struggle with relationships so much is because we are not comfortable with who we are. When is the last time that you looked in the mirror and your first response was not negative? I know that this is something that I struggle with daily, you are not alone. I think it is because we are so busy perfecting who we are and trying to be something that we feel we should be. In this zone all there will ever be is a wasteland of conflicting expectations and values that we will most likely never reach. How can you reach something if you never define what it is?
For example, if you are looking for a long-term relationship and are constantly settling for less than you deserve, how will you ever feel satisfied. You may think that you are doing this individual a huge favor by being there to pick up all of the pieces. Unfortunately you are doing more harm than good. Chances are you have dated someone who drove you absolutely crazy and yet you stayed with them because you were “improving” them. Everyone is imperfect and that is beautiful, you cannot change anyone, nor should you. You are who you are, and they are who they are. Neither is wrong, they might just not be compatible together.
Think of this, if you stay with someone who was a hanus amount of bad behaviors, you cannot fix them. Nothing is broken. If they think that they need to improve they will, until that time, you are wasting your breath. Therefore the only option left is to accept their bad behaviors. If you’re not okay with these behaviors, it can become your own personal hell. Why? They don’t feel the need to change and by staying you are saying their behaviors are okay. That does not make you a savior, it makes you an enabler. Enabling someone’s bad habits is one of the cruelest things that you can do. Tell them why their behaviors are destructive, if they listen, sweet! You may have a winner, if they do not, walk away. Not because you want them to chase you, but because you deserve better.
Everyone has bad habits and behaviors, it is what allows us to keep learning. If we stopped learning we would stop living. It is not fair to expect someone to be perfect, especially when you yourself are not. That is the biggest barrier between us and our happiness. We think that by meeting someone, they will fix us and fill in our missing parts. If you were to be given a manual of all the “parts” you were supposed to come with on this earth, you would realize you have them all. It is why we come into this world alone and leave alone. That does not mean we should not make as many quality connections as we can while we are here, quite the opposite.
I bring this up because expectations are a deadly thing. They can crush a beautiful moment in a heart beat. We succumb to the thought of “if this, then that”. We all want to have extraordinary moments in our lives. So we wait, and wait, and it never comes. Moments do not cease to be extraordinary, our expectations do. Our expectations rely on our insecurities. If this one thing were to happen, my life would be profoundly different. Maybe yes, maybe no. That is not something I am willing to wait my entire life to find out.
And why not let the ordinary be extraordinary, not because we need it to be. Simply because it is just by being. If we stopped chasing the perfect relationship, friendship, or moment, we might just realize that it is right in front of us. If you want to attract Mr./Mrs. Right, you better be sure that you are what you want to attract. You see, we do not attract what we want to be, we attract what we are. Be being what you wish to attract the universe aligns itself in such a way that it has to work out, We do not like hearing this, it means that we are not in control. Why does control matter so much? Control means that we do not have to be vulnerable.
It means we never have to feel like we cannot control the outcome. If we do not want to get hurt in a relationship, date someone who doesn’t deserve you. It gives you complete control and you will never be hurt. It also means that will never truly live. If there is one thing that I have learned from Dr. Brown, it is that vulnerability is the birth place of happiness and also fear. You cannot have one without the other.
It is why we never really feel anything when we are in control. When was the relationship most exciting: when you first met. Because there was no certainty whether or not it would work or not, and that is like our natural drug. It is a high that is so hard to reach that we can only reach it through the doors of vulnerability. Stop controlling, stop predicting, stop thinking. Just be. That is oversimplified, it is a daily practice to just be present in our life. If you are busy chasing, you are most likely not in the game that is your life.
Do you see magnets chasing other magnets? No. It’s because that magnet is a magnet and that is all it will ever be. Therefore it can wait and will still attract what it needs to into its life. We are magnets, although we have a plethora of emotions that prevent us from sitting still. In a world that is obsessed with movement it can seem strange to just be present.
Maybe, just maybe, if we stopped chasing, we would let life catch up to us. How would you feel to just be present? I may be a fitness fanatic, but I know sometimes it’s time to take off the running shoes and just sit and close my eyes. Try it, the next time they open, you might just find something worth looking at.