Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Making Sense of What Attracts Us

We all find ourselves uniquely attracted to certain people, situations, and things, while being naturally repelled by others. Most people, however, don't realize the extent to which their preferences are a reflection of who they are and what they want to become. Likewise, what we reject on the outside is an accurate mirror of what we reject in ourselves, or are afraid of. (Note that there are other attractive/repulsive forces at work in the universe, as well, but we'll be focusing on the most common phenomenon among humans: projection.)

Let's take a look at this. Think of your favorite author, movie star, singer, or athlete. What qualities does this person possess that you admire? Get specific. Maybe you admire their raw talent, confidence, or what they express. Whatever it is, it's likely to reflect what you desire to manifest or develop in yourself. Or, maybe you already possess these qualities, and you light up when you see these mirrored in another. Regardless of whether you are it or you long for it, the feelings you have ultimately tell you more about yourself than about the object of your admiration.

Along the same lines, it seems to me that the reason why most romances fail is that we are strongly attracted to certain qualities in a partner---qualities we want to integrate in ourselves. We think we want to be with a strong, capable, confident person, for instance, but what we really want is to be a strong, capable, and confident person. When we first meet Mr. or Ms. Right, that's what we see, and we disregarded any characteristics or circumstances that don't fit with the desired image. Eventually, though, we have to deal with the whole person, including the parts of them that reflect what we aren't comfortable with in ourselves (laziness, selfishness, anger, etc.) In the end, it cycles back to us.

I've noticed that this also works in reverse. Have you ever met someone who immediately pushed your buttons? You couldn't stand them because they seemed arrogant or weak or superficial. But then, over time, you got to know them better and discovered that they were actually okay. If you're honest, you'll realize that it's your own arrogance, weakness, or superficiality that you can't tolerate. Once again, it all cycles back to us.

Given this idea, you might be wondering why a macho guy would be attracted to an super-feminine woman (or vice-versa). Surely the manly-man doesn't want to be a woman. That's probably true, but all human beings possess both masculine and feminine energies, and when one is strongly emphasized, the other can become deficient, and we feel we must seek it outside of ourselves if we want to find balance.

This week, I ask you to look at yourself. Notice that what you are attracted to is predominantly a mirror of what you like about yourself or what you want to be. Own that what you don't like "out there" is a reflection of what you don't like about yourself or what you are afraid of. This is called "pulling in your projections," and can be extremely revealing, liberating, and humbling.

Blessings to you, and have a beautiful week.