When you aren’t getting the results you want in love, the tendency is to focus on what is wrong. You may have been told that you need to work on your “blocks” so you can find love, but this approach actually works against you. You will get caught up in a never-ending cycle of fixing and go down a rabbit hole of despair feeling you are never going to “get it.” By looking at yourself as broken or wrong, your mind expands and magnifies what you focus on. Just like when you are looking to buy a new car and find one you like, all of a sudden you start to see that car everywhere on the road. That is why you feel so exhausted in self-help, you keep focusing on what you don’t want. You are a creative being and your mind can either work with you or against you depending on where you focus it. I am not saying that there isn’t something inside that is stopping you from finding love, but let’s stop calling them blocks. Every human being was born into an insecure world and created a safety-zone for their emotional state to help them survive in the world. This process is the function of a normal, healthy mind, not a block or pathology. As a society, we’ve been trained not to get too close, not trust the opposite sex and to feel as though life is tough and hard, filled with problems and struggle. Everyone has shut off the heart to some degree just by being alive. Of course, you can have surface relationships in this state and that is why relationships fail so easily and the divorce rate is over 60%.

There was a time when I had dreams but had no idea how to make them a reality. I dreamed of finding a true love and doing something meaningful as a career.  I encountered so many obstacles along the way but I kept moving and hoping that things would turn out. Not because I was so sure that they would, but because I couldn’t stand the thought of retreating back to die an unfulfilled life. I wanted to teach about love and personal development. I wanted to write a book on finding love by accessing the subconscious mind, be interviewed as an expert on television and lead workshops around the world. I also wanted to find my own true love but past experience never gave me a hint of hope that it would ever happen. No matter the odds, I kept moving. I remember once when I was at a women’s networking event and I shared my dreams of being a relationship expert. The woman across from me shouted to the rest of the group, “Look at her, she wants to be a relationship expert and she’s not even in a relationship! Isn’t that funny?”  Yes, they all had a good laugh on my account. But, that didn’t stop me. They told me that I didn’t have a Ph.D. so forget about getting a book deal. They told me I couldn’t get interviewed on television because I didn’t have the right credentials or didn’t have the right look. They told me that I wouldn’t find a great guy because after all I was forty and I just needed to settle for good enough. I didn’t listen to them and continued toward my goals.

Have you ever felt puzzled (along with your good friends) as to why you haven’t met a special partner yet? You feel over-processed with all of your “issues” and you know why you attract unavailable partners or no dates at all, but still cannot break free to love. You wonder, “Am I destined to be alone?” I had the same frustration. It was driving me out of my mind. I knew I was relatively attractive and had a pretty good personality and wasn’t crazy, but still no man wanted me. I saw the guys I dated settle down with the next girl and I wondered, “Why didn’t he pick me?” We have this battle going on inside with the part of us that wants great love and the other part that is settling for crumbs. Usually the crumb-grabber wins because she is the loudest and the most emotional. This ego part of us wants more of the same. So, if heartache has been a familiar friend, she will pick Mr. Non-committal every time. What kept me single so long is that I gave crumb-grabber so much attention. I analyzed her, found her core beliefs, healed her wounds and played with her inner child. All these things were a great start, but there was an underlying message that I was broken and that idea that I was dysfunctional because I was single was what kept me stuck. If you come from a place of wounded-ness, you can never feel powerful. Even after some healings, you will still have a tendency to be overly protective and scared to open your heart. You would unconsciously be afraid to get wounded again. No visualization or vision board will help this.

Many women dream of the handsome prince arriving to take her away from the evil stepmother of corporate America or the lonely tower of gloom. Romantic comedies, poetry and even Tom Cruise with his “you complete me” message has given singles the idea that happiness is on the other side of meeting that special person. There is nothing wrong with wanting a partner or marriage or children. We are social creatures and designed to have love and valuable relationships with each other. In the movie, “Out in the Wild,” the main character realizes at the end that true happiness is shared with others. Your desire for love and a more complete life is right on target. But a partner isn’t the sole solution of life’s woes and is not responsible for giving you a life. Imagine meeting someone and having that burden placed on you. Being someone’s everything is so much pressure. The best thing you can do for a lasting relationship is to be happy before you get involved. You know this, you have heard this before but how can you be happy if the one thing you want in your life is missing? Believe me, I know it isn’t easy when your heart aches for true love but the truth is that you aren’t aching for what you think. There is something deeper, a void that you feel inside that can never been filled by anyone but you.

You say you will never go back to him or that you just won’t accept that last minute invitation again from him. You want to tell him its over or tell him you like him but the words just won’t leave your lips. Something inside of you stirs and you stop. You have boundaries that you wouldn’t dare cross with others, but somehow you let them step all over you. You tolerate behavior because you don’t want to be alone, but you know deep in your heart what you need to do. You just can’t leave. You stop. You see someone in a public place that is attractive. You notice no wedding ring and he’s looking at you and smiling. You want to smile back and walk over to say something but you just can’t move your feet or smile back. You justify your staying put because HE should be the one to approach you. Then, he walks out. You wonder why you stopped. The comfort zone you created for yourself has kept you safe and worked for your current life situation. You have survived and thrived in some ways but you want more. You want a greater love relationship than your friends. You want a raise or a career that makes you happy. You make promises that this year everything is going to change for you, but it doesn’t. What makes you stop? Love or anything new in your life is on the other side of fear. You hit a wall, a habitual limitation that shows up and your mind warns you not to cross that line. Your ego wants you to stay comfortable so it talks you out of anything risky, new or adventurous. You feel the desire, but this part of you makes you stop every time.

We have all been there. They say they are interested in a serious relationship, jump in quickly and then, three weeks into dating, they disappear. You thought you had a great connection but then suddenly they drop off the face of the earth. Sometimes they break up with a text or leave a message on your voicemail when they know you aren’t home. What is that about? This behavior all comes down to one thing…fear of confrontation. Somewhere along the line we have all been told how to behave, when to share and when to shut up. Most of us have been conditioned to avoid the truth because we don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings OR we don’t want people to challenge us on our truth because we don’t have enough confidence in ourselves. The problem with white lies is that you really think you are being nice. I remember a time when I met this guy who was really great but I just wasn’t interested and I was afraid to hurt him. I kept stringing him along because I hoped he would eventually lose interest and go away.  What I realized was that I wasn’t being nice at all. I was actually being mean. When I finally told him the truth he said, “Thank you. At least now I know where I stand and can move on. I appreciate your honesty.” That broke an old pattern of mine where I would just not return phone calls but, at the same time, complained about men who did that to me. It was liberating to just say what I really felt. Honest communication with a man...wow.