Many people who are seeking dates are limited by their fears of a lot of things in their life which they cannot affect, but are vainly trying to control. A naked fear of failure, of difference, of love, of hurt, of the consequences and even life itself, in the futile search for perfection. Worst of all, they fear commitment to someone for a long time. They might not get hurt by hanging back, but they stay stuck in their fear, fossilised and boring, doing the same old things, with the same expectations, but getting the same joyless results, while becoming increasingly unhappy and unattractive in the process.
The people who fear the most about potential relationships live in regret. They tend to be the ones who don’t make use of the opportunity in the first place because of the constant fear of failure and hurt that dog them daily. They would rather dither over their decisions, or take no decisions, allowing the opportunity to pass, then berate themself later on for not acting on the moment. It is very easy to sit and fret, or to live in regret; to worry constantly about what might happen in the future while feeling sorry for ourselves. Constant regret about the relationship which didn’t take off, the man or woman who hurt us, the partner who behaved badly or the person who rejected us, rather to chalk it up to life and use the experience for better growth. Living in fear and regret takes no skill or courage but it certainly keeps us single!
None of us is perfect, yet we spend our life in a futile effort to achieve such perfection through control. That little word control’ accounts for the numerous regrets we have, especially when we fail to control our lives at every turn and regret our mistakes’ and the hurt we had. Instead we use everything which goes wrong’ to prove how terrible we are or how bad our partners were, fuelling our fear of the future, which then prevents us from getting new dates and moving on with our lives. Fearing a repeat of our hurt, the next person we meet is likely to suffer from our pain without knowing what they have done, and are then deprived of the commitment they rightfully deserve. Men are particularly guilty of this. Often a man will tell the next woman who treats him well that she has restored’ his faith in women, as if the one woman who caused his pain represents the whole gender species!
The Importance of Commitment
The most important word behind love and respect is commitment. When we respect or love someone, we commit to them for whatever time required in the interaction. That’s the price we pay for more happiness with someone else. We commit to affirming them, aligning with them, to reinforcing their aspirations and self-belief, to valuing them as a significant person we admire and to enhancing their happiness while expanding our own. Through commitment come enrichment and joy. So when we cannot commit to another person, we are only half alive without the contentment we seek. Regret and fear keep that commitment at bay.
Human value comes from interaction, affirmation and love. We do not need anyone to complete us physically, but we do need others to enrich the quality of our lives if we are not to become mechanical robots with fossilised emotions. Our life becomes joyous only when we are enriched by someone else, and vice versa. If we are not reinforced in any way, we are likely to feel excluded from the social contact we crave. People give meaning to our lives. Without them we feel invisible. When we fear people, fear commitment to them, or fear repeats of past hurt, they all negatively effect our living. Thus, if fear is keeping you single, you’ll be missing out on a life.
By Elaine Sihera