The dynamics of relationships can be very strange.
First, you meet someone and find him very attractive. He finds you attractive. What he initially sees and finds attractive is usually you being yourself.
So why do so many people try to change who they are into who they think someone else wants them to be?
In the early stages of a relationship, you may try to project a version of yourself to him that you think he’ll like. “He likes artsy women, so I’m going to show him how artsy I am.”
“She loves yoga, so I’m going to talk up doing yoga, even though I’ve only done it a handful of times in my life.”
Oddly, at this stage of the relationship, you don’t even need to bother to do that. You both are only looking for all the things you have in common anyway, and ignoring the differences, even the glaring ones. You’ve got blinders on and only see what you want to see.
You love mellow singer songwriters like Jack Johnson and James Taylor, and don’t care when your friend points out that this guy’s Facebook profile lists his favorite band of all time as Megadeth.
He’s not thinking about the fact that you hate the outdoors, even though he spends his weekends hiking, biking and canoeing.
This is generally how relationships start. For them to endure, however, you both have to see one another in the clear light of day. Trying to be someone who you aren’t, someone who you think he wants you to be, never works over long term. Squeezing yourself into a mold that doesn’t fit you just doesn’t feel comfortable. While it is possible (though unlikely) that the relationship may last, if you aren’t being yourself, you won’t be happy. Period.
Hiding who you are is toxic anyway. Corrosive, in fact. It requires you to keep secrets, to seal away all of these wonderful, glorious parts of you that someone, maybe even this guy, would love.
If you feel the need to hide who you are, ask yourself why. Is it because you don’t love yourself enough? The truth is that to be successful in any long-term love relationship, you must love yourself first.
Rumi said, “Your task is not to seek for Love, but to merely seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” One of those barriers is being afraid to let your beloved see who you really are because you think the real you is not loveable.
That barrier is caused by the biggest barrier against love of all: not loving yourself.
If you don’t love yourself, you can certainly learn how. A good life coach can guide you to that place. It is worth every bit of time, effort and every cent you spend on it because if you don’t love yourself, you won’t be capable of being a good partner in a love relationship. And you will never be happy. You’ll end up spending your money on antidepressants to mask your pain.
If someone doesn’t love you for who you are, there is someone else out there who will. Love yourself. Be yourself. Get rid of the barriers. It is the only way to have a deep, warm love that lasts.
Questions about coaching and whether it’s for you? I’m happy to talk! Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up a time or click HERE.