Find It In You

A beautiful, confident woman stands against a white wall with her arms crossed, thinking about it's time to find it in you and stop looking for a man to fill you up.There’s a reason you’re so drawn to him. It’s no accident he’s the one you've chosen, even if it doesn't seem like it.

And it makes perfect sense that you feel like you can’t live without him, that you can’t let him go, that you need him in your life to live.

I understand completely even though most everyone else you use these words with doesn't. And they don’t understand because they can’t.

But you do, so well.

This reason you’re so drawn to him, it’s because you’re so good at attracting exactly what you need. It’s because you’re such a beautiful loving, caring, sensitive soul that you've found exactly the type of person who gives you a new feeling of confidence and boldness that you, too, can do anything and be anything when you’re around him.

Of course he makes you laugh, of course you’re so happy when you’re with him.

His is the life you want for you! His way is the ease with which you want your life to be lived by you. And he makes it seem so believable, so possible, and so within your reach.

You can let down your guard, stop trying to please everyone, stop caring about what everyone else thinks, and stop being oh so responsible.

You can breathe.

He's almost everything you wish you could be more like, even if you don’t realize it yourself.  His lack of caring about everyone else, his lack of needing to please anyone but himself, his ability to set such strong boundaries to keep everyone from getting too close, his attitude of irresponsibility.

He knows what’s his and what isn't and he has no problem separating the two. He may even tell you this is who he is, and people can either like or leave it.

And of course, he’s talking about you here,  too.

It wasn't until I finally realized how little I was actually getting out of these relationships, how one-sided they truly were, that I started seeing a pattern to the men I was attracted to and attracting. They were one and the same. They were all various versions of this same theme.

It was because I was always looking for someone outside of myself to give me permission to live the life I always dreamed of. It was because I didn't think I could do what I wanted to do on my own.

It was because I cared so much about what everyone else thought about me and wanted everyone to like me, to approve of me, to accept me for who I was.  It was because I feared failure, I feared disapproval, I feared being discovered that I wasn't everything I was supposed to be by the standards I had allowed others to set for me that weren't my own to begin with.

It wasn't until I repeated this same pattern enough times that I was finally able to see what was really going on.

I stopped trying to live off someone else. I started living for me.

I started making a list of everything I wanted to do. I ventured out of my comfort zones. I started asking myself the big questions I didn't think I had a right to ask.

I started looking at me, not him.

I started finding my own way, baby steps at first, not knowing exactly what I was doing, but knowing it was my own right to find my own way.

I stopped apologizing for not knowing.

I started accepting the things that I had always hated about myself.

I stopped seeing my negatives as liabilities and started seeing them as the qualities that made me who I am.

I made a list of things I wanted to work on, things I really did want to change, but I also started to accept where I was and who I was right then as well.  And realizing that wherever I was starting from was OK.  I realized I had nothing to lose and everything to gain, and the only thing I was wasting by not getting started was my own life.

It was time.

It didn't happen overnight. But it did happen.

Not without doubts and not without fears. Not without so many two steps forward and one step backward wondering if I was doing the right thing or if any of this was really necessary. And not without having those moments where I simply wanted to give up and go back to the old model that seemed so much easier because at least then I didn't have to do this on my own.

But I didn't go back. And I finally found what I had been looking for in me.

I stopped caring so much about everyone else and what they thought of me, and I started living the way I wanted to live my life. I stopped trying to please everyone because I realized I was the only one I answer to and what someone else wanted or needed was their business and not mine.

I started setting strong boundaries to keep myself strong in who I was and keep other people’s issues from becoming enmeshed with my own. I started being only as responsible as I needed to be, and not responsible by anyone else’s standards.

I started knowing what was mine and what wasn't and being able to tell the difference.

I stopped changing myself into what everyone else wanted me to be. I began to live my life for me without listening to that little voice that I was so used to hearing tell me I was being selfish. I finally knew the truth.

Now it’s your turn.

Find it in you.

What does he have that you don’t? What does he give you that you can’t give to yourself? What wings does he give you that you can’t give yourself? What does being with him bring to you that you don’t feel you can do without him? What is it that draws you to him? What need are you trying to fill?

This isn't about proving to yourself you don’t need anyone but you. It’s not about saying no to someone who is on your page and compatible with you.  It’s about discovering that you don’t need to settle for a relationship with someone who doesn't treat you the way you deserve to be treated simply because you don’t think you can live without him. It’s about giving to yourself everything he gives you so that you can have the life and the love you’re always wanted that’s found in the true living of your own life. It’s about feeling that beautiful confidence of knowing you can do this for you.

You don’t need the halfway version of living vicariously through someone else

Go find the real thing in you.

How about you - what need are you trying to fill with the men that you've been choosing? Share your story with us in the comments.

Comments

  1. Courtney says

    i had this guy which I met last September. I was drawn to him because of his caring & personality, on the 15 Nov 2013 I had a bad day n plan 1 was meeting with him was up in the air (I asked him for a drink) my other friend could only have a drink with me n that was plan 2 and 1x my other friend took off n not saying good bye I went back to plan 1 which was meeting up with the guy, I was out of my mind thinking should I go to the mall n see him so I gave the guy a txt saying I was at the café waiting for him n then he txt'd back "so sorry to hear you had a bad day and nah I don't think I can do drinks 2day & it's hot" he sounded buggered . So I was upset n felt like I pressured him and myself and he gave me a txt saying "it's ok, we'll talk tonight" so that night came around n he wasn't online n didn't come online n said to him What happened to u last nite n he said "he went out & said so sorry" I thought he could've just told me he went out. on 4 Feb he ended the friendship which I didn't want to happen bcoz I was too drawn on him n told me he was sorry & I hope he comes back to me hopefully around 6 months - 2 years. last week 1 of my friends left me n said he saw that guy that ended the friendship n I kept quiet on it n not said a word about It just incase he comes back to me. he left to go away last Friday n is away for 2 weeks. It's like I haven't forgot about the guy i'm drawn too but I still think of him at the back of my mind n keep things private with him. Its like I will always remember him just incase I see him again. example bumping into him on the streets n says to me do u remember me and I would say Of course for a example" I wanted to see him more than 1x but I saw him 2x in sep n he's postponed 8x in outings.

    • Jane says

      You have to both be on the same page and want the same thing with each other for a real relationship to work, Courtney. His actions - his behavior - always tells you what's really there, and what's not. When you can accept where he is, and where you are, and realize you can't change anyone else or make them want to be with you, you find a peace within yourself. Of course you remember someone who meant something to you. It's when you realize that it's never personal - it's always about compatibility - that you can choose to not let it affect you.

  2. A says

    Jane,

    As always I love to read your posts, I find I am able to exhale afterwards. As most of us know, the search for the one can leave you feeling exhausted and hopeless, especially as we get older. One thing I'd like to address though, is this theme of "When you're ready", "When you're happy with yourself". I personally feel this is a life long pursuit and I honestly feel that I'm always going to have insecurities, things I'm working on, and trying to accept myself more, in fact that is one of the biggest things I've learned to accept about myself this past year. I recently called off a marriage, I've managed to avoid dating people that I normally would have fallen back to in the past, and I'm trying to maintain a positive attitude. At 35, I feel I love and accept myself more than ever, I refuse to settle, but I am remaining open to people I would never have been open to in the past. I've been pursing my likes and spending quality time getting to know myself. I've been single now for 2 years and as much as I love your posts, I am a bit disheartened by this idea that "If you haven't found it yet, its because you either don't love yourself enough, or you aren't doing quite the right thing". I can't help but interpret that like I'm still doing something wrong. It's a bit exasperating because, honestly, I don't know what else to do. I'm not asking for advice on how to find love, I'm just saying that it's very possible for a person to love and accept themself, to be exploring what they like, to be living a life that they want.....and unfortunately, still long for someone to share it with. I'm not unhappy and even when I was in a relationship, i still took care of myself and my partner, but there are those days when I have a hard time at work, my pms is just bringing me down, or something kinda crappy happens, and when I come through the door, as happy as I am to see my dog, my heart can't help but ache for the right man to be standing there to give me a hug. So, thank you for all your amazing advice and words of wisdsom. Really and truly, like I said before, when I'm feeling hopeless, I often come to your blog to raise my spirits, and it usually does the trick, except when I read these posts of...."When you do this, when you realize that....THEN you will find it". I just don't know if that is true for everyone....

    • Hope says

      Hi A, I have to step in here. I think certain advice from Western society has made everyone neuortic and analysing the smallest detail. You see I enjoy reading Janes blogs, but these are her experiences and lessong sfrom her path and glad she is providing a network for women to share and express their sorrows. Love and relationships do not come to you when your happy or sad. Life will forever be rollercoaster ups and downs. Unfortunatley people have brought into this happiness business of marketing based on fears. You are fine, you are not doing anything wrong. Its not about who you are, in life there will be happy and sad moments secure and insecure moments, its called be human being real. Everyone has gone crazy in this finding true love BUSINESS. Love is not a game nor a business. Follow nature, forget the manipulated western structure and know you will meet him. I am in your boat. Its not about fixing yourself, the other person involved also has to work on their selves for your union. Don't focus on you, live your life stop analysing and see LIFE as a gift and whats in front of you everymoment, and let go surrender to life. Think realistically, can all this advice work in areas with no Western influence, look at the native Americans, or other cultures in the East, or the immigrant families you see in the west who live honestly with authentic personalities, love joy and emotions and deal with problems not running away or living a fearful life. None of Western advice really works in the real world. Think if a lot of the advice on positivity constantly working on yourself would apply to people with nothing but a simple village life. They are happier than us, because they live with their hearts and honour. So please ladies stop stressing yourself out, stop analysing IT'S NOT YOU NEVER HAS BEEN YOU. We are all made uniquely with our flaws and behaviour, we can grow and change for us. FOR PEACE OF MIND FOR LOVE TO FLOW WITHIN. Its just the reality you havent met your guy, but if your heart pulls at you its worth following your heart. A lot of advice from the west is based in insecurites. Janes blogs are from her own insecurities. I know many of us are born in authentic cultures who know insecurites are not real its western society made to break people to bring them down. It doesnt exist. Do you think a disabled person is insecure or suffering, no thats all the person knows, its the fact society sees him/her as abnormal. The diabled person is secure in oneself. Just know this ladies follow your heart and head, just know that love should never be toxic, someone abusive manipulative or cheating are symptoms of their own ego an internal mental issues. Its never you. You can choose to either leave or work it out. Some long relationships have been through their fair share of struggle, you have to think are they worth it for you. If you want it for your life. Love should never be transactional. Just give love but love yourself for the union. It should be teamwork, chemistry timing and luck. There are no rules.
      STOP ANALYSING AND LIVING DO YOU THINK THE OLDER GENERATIONS ANALYSED LIKED WE DID. WE HAVE ALL LOST THE PLOT TO THE POINT MORE DEPRESSION AND ILLNESSES FROM TOO MUCH THOUGHT HAS INCREASED HERE IN THE WEST.

      • A says

        Thank you Hope, I agree with you entirely. Too much thought is dangerous and it can be a vicious cycle, but when you want something with your whole heart, and in my case, most of your friends and family are all married with kids....one can't help but wonder...why can't I seem to find this? Honestly, the best thing for me I think, is to give myself a much needed break from thinking about it for awhile. And actually, I think Jane recommends that too, but it can be hard to do.

        • Maris says

          Dear A,

          Don't every single women or men gets to this question?
          I am not from the western or America and I deal with them same issues.

          It is true that you should not chase after love like a mad women!
          I find that life should be joyful and that you gotta have inner peace with yourself.
          And I think sometimes a book, religion, friends, hobbies or Jane Blog can lead you
          In life to stay happy and have hope. I think this is something you should practice
          Or your life.
          People with husband and kids also deal with own insecurities and
          Drama.

          Now I must agree that sometimes it is hard , I am myself 2 years single and 28 years.
          All my nieces are getting married or pregnant.. In my culture people get married at
          23... I am exctuay "to old" as my aunts joke sometimes.

          So don't stay exhausted, change the situation or think
          What your next step is, what will make you happy/calm.
          Reading books about relationships etc. does not always help. In that way
          I don't understand American culture about this hype/books how to get happy etc.
          it seems like a business, your right in that.

          but I do read American spiritual books, some of them Are very inspiring.

          I am taking myself a break at least 2 months and still are going to enjoy life
          And keep my heart open. Maybe if a nice man shows up I will
          Consider it . But now I feel a little exhausted and I am taking a break.

    • Jane says

      I so hear what you're saying here, A. I hear that longing in your heart that is a reflection of the kind of love that you have to offer someone who is worthy of you. And it's not "unfortunate" to still be longing for someone to share your life with after you've made this beautiful, full life for yourself. It's a natural part of being ready for someone to see you for your true self and be ready for you as much as you're ready for him. This isn't about what everyone else seems to have that you don't. This isn't about blaming yourself and beating yourself up for what you feel you can't figure out or aren't doing right. This is about loving yourself through this journey you're on called your life. This is about giving that same love and compassion and understanding you give so easily to everyone else to yourself. What my posts are all about are the pieces of a larger puzzle for you to take what resonates with you and see what comes up for you, what inspires you, what gives you that "aha" moment so you can take it and apply it to your own life in whatever way speaks to you.

      Love finds us in all different ways, at all different times, in all kinds of places. It finds us when we're ready, and it finds us when we're not. If we're not ready, it comes back and finds us again. It finds us as many times as we need. It gives us those second chances we don't always give ourselves. It's not a contest to see how ready we can be. It's a process of believing in ourselves, of believing in love, of knowing what we're looking for, and of being open to see what shows up when we're not spending all our time and energy hunting, but when we're living, not endlessly searching. What it looks like and how it happens is different for everyone. What I am absolutely certain of is that love is loving and forgiving, and compassionate and understanding and knows how to bring two people together who are truly right for each other when we least expect it. And it's exactly the same for you.

  3. Maris says

    "l, I feared being discovered that I wasn't everything I was supposed to be by the standards I had allowed others to set for me that weren't my own to begin with."

    This is So true for me. I was not always aware but I guess I liked it that
    Someone "loved me or thought of me as the prettiest girl in the world".
    sometimes it is ok that you feel like this because of a guy. It is a
    Compliment actually . And I discovered that I was actually getting addicted because
    Time and time again I need that approval to make me feel good/sexy.
    What happens when he leaves or I don t date, I miss it and
    Try to take it back again ( because it made me feel good/sexy) . It's like a
    Small addiction that is eating bits of your self esteem.

    Only in my case I was trying to adapt myself or my body of what he said/thought
    Was "pretty or sexy ". So that I would get more compliments and then my ego
    Would rise to the sky !
    Which looking back , is the most time waisting in my life .
    Being under pressure about body image or how sexy does he find me.
    What a waist of time, it even makes me mad!
    I am now 28 , and glad that I came to this point on my path..

    Thank you Jane!

    • Jane says

      So spot on, Maris; thanks for sharing your experience in such a real way that I'm sure so many of us can relate to. We give so much of our power away when we allow our sense of worth and our "measuring up" to be so dependent on another human being. But like everything else, we have to be ready to see it for what it is before we do. Be so proud of yourself for seeing yet another piece of the puzzle!

  4. Michelle says

    Hi Jane,

    This post resonates with me quite strongly as I had come to this conclusion on my own recently.

    Do you think that the same would apply to the men? I mean, the man I'm thinking about and am drawn to is obviously drawn to me also. Is there something is me that he is also looking for? Something that he would need to draw from within?

    • Jane says

      I'm so glad the timing of this resonated with you, Michelle. I do believe this is exactly how the other side of the attraction works in who you find drawn to you. He has his reasons too that he is probably not even aware of. He sees something in you that he doesn't have, that he wants to cultivate in himself, albeit in a very subconscious way for most men because they are not as in touch with themselves - especially their inner emotional selves - as we tend to be. And so it is no coincidence that the irresponsible, non-committal types who know they "should" be ready to settle down, they "should" be ready to commit and be responsible and accept the responsibility that comes with being of a certain age and settling down with a wife and family because they feel the pressure, too, find themselves drawn to someone who is herself very responsible and family oriented, and "ready" herself, only to discover that they can't do it, that they're not there, that they couldn't pull it off. But if they're motivated enough themselves, after playing out their own pattern of this enough times, they can look within and discover the work they need to do within themselves.

      Even just realizing for themselves that this is what they're feeling, that this is what's going on with them, can be enough of the impetus that finally helps them to open up, to get back in touch with themselves and their emotional side that they were taught to suppress for so long, since this is how most men are raised in our culture. And so they, too, "find it" in themselves.

      But we so often don't give them any reason to do this work, to look this deep. We excuse them, we over-accommodate, we overly understand, we let them back over and over again. So that they discover there's always someone willing to put up with their behavior, to try to save them, to trade what they're both looking for, in the same unhealthy ways that keeps everyone stuck and simply doing more of the same. It's why we have attractions like this that seem so magnetic, so powerful, so much like fireworks, and then can end in such devastating ways. Yes, indeed, Michelle, it's there, it happens for him, too.

      • Hope says

        I love this insight you have here about men. I so get it and do not get it. I find that some men rather not work on themselves for the easy girl and get trapped and go down in life. Then just face their issues with someone who is patient and giving them room to grow and develop and progress in life together for the union.

        • Jane says

          We all live to the light of what we know, Hope. Just like all of us, they have to be motivated to look within, to work on themselves, to want to do something different. And if it's working for them and they can easily find someone who doesn't understand she has a right and a say to how she's being treated, there is no real reason to do anything different. No matter how much we don't understand how someone else behaves the way they do, it's not up to us to change them. It has to come from them.

  5. lacy says

    I can't tell when and if a guy really likes me or not cause all they do is use me, so I'm not looking for a while,I do . Miss hanging out and doing things but I'm not interested right .now all men do is use me..I'm fine being single....

    • Jane says

      Someone who truly likes you and is interested in getting to know you better won't ever use you, Lacy. That's how you'll know. But it's only when you stand up for yourself and refuse to be used that you start to see a change in who you're attracting and who's attracted to you. Enjoy this time focusing on you and living your life getting to know you. Life, and love, is not meant to be lived being used!

  6. Carolyn says

    Jane, yet another right-on, fantastic post!
    I was involved with someone, long-distance, and I really loved him. When it was obvious that the relationship was not going to continue, I would think to myself, "But I can't live without him!" Then it hit me like a ton of bricks, "I DO live without him all of the time!" He is not there for me at all. You are now helping me, through Getting to True Love, move on.....ONWARD and FORWARD!!! Thank you, Jane!

    • Jane says

      Thank you, Carolyn; I'm so glad this resonated with you. It's so telling when you realize what you are truly capable of when you see just how strong you are in yourself, in being yourself, in letting the real you hold your own. Love your beautiful expression of words here; you've got it, Carolyn!

  7. Tina says

    This article has lots of good advice, thank you, Jane. I'm still trying to find myself and I'm still struggling because I'm not confident, but I shall try as you seem comfortable with yourself now and I hope to be like that someday. I realized that I've always been attracted to the cheerful, outgoing guys that always got along with everyone. I guess it's because I'm usually reserved and quiet and being with them makes me open up more. The first guy I crushed on was extremely sweet to me and said things that girls would like to hear, but I soon learned that he didn't treat me as special as I thought and he said all the same things to other girls. The guy I'm currently in a relationship with is also sweet, but he actually does care about me, but I still find it hard to trust him and I don't know how to stop doubting him. How can I tell when someone is sincere? He's willing to spend time with me and talk to me, but I always get so insecure when he doesn't respond. I think it's due to the fact that we are in our last year in college and graduation is coming up, so he doesn't want to get too close to me. And, the fact that we've only been dating for about 4 months. During the whole relationship, he hasn't wanted to define the relationship and isn't willing to commit because he was hurt in past relationships and is afraid of the idea of getting into one. I really care about him and he really cares about me too. He says that he feels like he's treating me like a girlfriend and he wants to be treated like a boyfriend. There is about 3 more months until graduation. It's so hard for me because this is the first time I've seriously cared for a guy and I just want to cherish the time we have left together before it's gone. He already mentioned to me that it's too painful for him to be in a long distance relationship as he has tried before, but he still wants to be friends after everything is over. Should I keep trying in this relationship and hope he changes his mind or just let go? How should I talk to him about this? I keep telling myself to let it go, but I really care about him and always miss him too much to go through with it.

    • Jane says

      Try not to put so much focus on the relationship itself, Tina; and just enjoy being with him. It has only been 4 months so it's still early on in the relationship and so he may not be ready to define the terms of this or get into the details. It sounds like you've already communicated your desire to define your relationship, so listen to what he's saying he's not ready and isn't willing to commit. If this is what he says, the best thing you can do for yourself is to believe him and not take this personally. It's never about you, it's about him.

      If you can just enjoy your time with him, and keep living your own life and keep your options open, it will be easier to accept him for where he's at while also continuing to get your own needs met outside of him. It's not about waiting for someone to come around or hoping he'll change his mind; it's about living your own life and filling your own cup so full so that what he does or doesn't do isn't so much your focus as much as living your own life is.

      For any relationship to work, it requires two people who are both on the same page and want the same level of commitment with each other - and want to do what it takes to make that happen. You can't change him, and you can't make him want what you want. What you can do, though, is keep focusing on you, keep him as just one part of your life, and keep everything in balance by not making him out to be more than he is. Only you know what you can live with and what you can't, and what he is worth to you. It's always your decision.

  8. Kwevanzané says

    Jane the pain is too much. How do I move on? I can't even concentrate into putting my energy into other things. Everyone around me is getting married, having kids, and I am always on someone's rejection list.
    I know al of it is my fault, I know I brought this on myself. I cried so much last night, I just wanted to scream, i wanted to hurt myself.
    I am 28, I have been rejected FOUR times..... I've never been in a serious relationship. The last person I got close too, he just had me to feel better about himself and now that he's on a good path (with endless help from me) well he doesn't need me anymore. He has a job now because of me, he's made some very good decisions (because I made them for him). I was always his emergency contact, and now I'm no contact.
    How do I move on with all this pain????

    • Jane says

      I so hear your pain, Kwevanzane. You will get through this, as hard as it feels right now, but you have to take the steps you need to get that help.

      None of these rejections have been about you, no matter how much it doesn't seem like that way. These men weren't right for you or they would have worked out. You're not here to provide "endless help" to "make his good decisions" to give and give and give some more without receiving something for yourself in return. You're not here to be someone's "emergency contact".

      You're here to be loved for your own beautiful self, without having to prove yourself or do anything for anyone but be yourself. No one is ever worth hurting yourself for, and if you really that way, please don't hesitate to get help from a professional who can help you see this for yourself. You're worth so much more than this, than any of these guys, than anything you're putting yourself through.

      See these rejections for what they are, reality checks that you couldn't see any other way. Learn to love yourself, to see yourself for the prize you are, Kwevanzane. Make sure someone's worthy of you before you give so much or yourself away like you have. Don't be so hard on yourself; you've done the best you could with what you've know and where you've been. You're so not alone!

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