If your relationships haven’t been too long or too deep, a possible cause is that you’re unconsciously afraid of getting too close, vulnerable, or dependent on someone else. You may value your freedom and independence more than connection and commitment.
I feel you. I know how hard it can be to want to be in a loving relationship and, at the same time, to push people away, or to choose people who you know you won’t get too attached to. It’s an inner war that can keep you single or in shallow relationships.
From my own experience, people who fear commitment are, at the core, afraid of getting hurt. “Opening my heart to someone, sharing my wildest dreams and deepest fears, showing my most vulnerable parts and being rejected or abandoned? No, thank you!”
Many times, along with the fear of getting emotionally hurt, there’s also the limiting belief that you can be loved only if you are perfect: “This person can’t possibly love me for who I am, once they see the real me, they will run away, and I will suffer. So, I won’t open my heart.”
If this is you, here are some things that have worked for me in my own healing journey:
1. Slow down and get to know the other person really well
Instead of rushing into a relationship, try taking small steps. Gradual progress allows you to feel more secure and in control, building trust and comfort.
Imagine driving with 150 km/h versus driving with 50 km/h – what would be the damage in case of an accident in any of these situations?
Similarly, it’s one thing to go slowly when you meet someone new and another one to rush into the relationship. When you go slow, you can see red flags and lack of compatibility, and you can stop. However, when you go fast, you will not see these things, so you might end up getting hurt and also hurting the other person.
2. Ask yourself: “What kind of relationship would make it worth for me to risk being rejected or abandoned?”.
For example, I used to fear commitment because I didn’t like any of the relationships I saw around me and I was thinking: “If this is what a committed relationship is, then thank you, but I am not interested!”. Until I heard about the concept of designing your ideal relationship and consciously creating a relationship that you actually want to be in.
I am not saying this is easy because you need to do inner work and really get to know yourself, choose your partner wisely and then work with them to consciously create this relationship, but it’s better than staying in a shallow relationship or being always single.
So, write down the qualities of your dream partner and your ideal relationship and pay attention if the people you date are good candidates for it. And when I am saying 'qualities', I am referring more to important character traits rather than physical attributes.
3. Define what "freedom" means to you
I get it, you want to be in a committed relationship and also feel free, and you may think these are incompatible.
What does freedom mean to you?
Does it mean to be able to climb mountains once every month by yourself?
Does it mean to be able to go out with your friends twice a week?
Does it mean to be able to have other sexual partners? In this case, you may want to also define what “commitment” means to you.
Until you do not know what kind of freedom you want, you won’t know what kind of partner you need.
4. Do the inner healing work with a professional
This pattern of fearing commitment is coming most likely from a previous hurt (either in your childhood, teenage years or early adulthood) and it can be transformed.
I am not going to lie, doing inner work can be uncomfortable: acknowledging your hurts and your fears is not pleasant. But, the same way you feel happy after climbing a mountain, you will feel happier after working on your mental and emotional limitations.
5. Ask yourself: “Do I want to let fear stop me from living my best life?”
Can you have a good life without being in a fulfilling committed relationship? I guess so. But can your life be even better and enjoyable when you share it with someone you are deeply in love with?
Relationships can be challenging, I know. But would you rather take a risk at creating your dream relationship OR playing it safe and missing out on the love, passion, joy, happiness, connection, growth that you can experience in a mutually satisfying romantic relationship?
You are the creator of your life. Just like an artist works and sweats to create a masterpiece, you will also need to put in the work if you want your life to be something you are proud of. And if you resonate with me and you are ready to start this journey, you can contact me to see if we are a good match for working together.