Think of any relationship that is important to you. Consider how much of your energy is devoted to seeking the other’s approval, winning their time and attention and knowingly or unknowingly awaiting their validation for who you would like to be seen as. Investing so much importance in their opinion of you, that all other feedback is neglected or ignored.
If you are not playing the seeker in this game, then see if you are playing aloof or hard-to-get: The one who has to fend off accusations of neglect, is frequently unavailable(either physically or emotionally), is more likely to express criticism or scope for improvement rather than appreciation, or generally withholds demonstrations of love, dishing out scraps only when the other person seems to have reached the end of their rope. That too, just enough hope and love to keep the other from walking away. Hiding yourself, but wanting the other to be found when you so desire.
If you honestly evaluate your behaviour and find that you tend to lean towards either of the above, don’t be surprised to find that the other person plays the complementary role. The chaser finds the one who tends to run and the one who habitually runs, tends to find the partner who is willing to chase.
In the bargain, both players have defined relationship as a game of hide and seek, or chase and be chased. Once this habit and unconscious definition has set in, it would not be unusual for them to change the paired actor, but continue to repeat this pattern in different relationships. They look around and see the same around them, this is all they experience themselves and slowly but surely, one begins to believe that this alone is the definition of a relationship.
Even if one voices frustration and exhaustion with such games, the truth is many of us get addicted to the drama and adrenalin that comes from being in such situations. There are plenty of difficult interactions, food for thought, topics for discussion, room for complaint and then the peak experiences of making up. Unhooking from this morphic field of excitement and self importance is difficult even when one sees through it.
Most of us don’t even stop to notice and realise the underlying patterns of our behaviour.
Entrapped in this chaotic and happening world, our interactions remain at a superficial level. Despite the fights, arguments, tantrums or separations, this form of engagement is often actually easier than truly nurturing a relationship. For any relationship to evolve one has to engage and deepen the intimacy and transparency. This takes a commitment of time, effort and energies. A deeper look at our priorities, understanding of self and being available and present to the other is an on going and intense process. It means one has to have the courage to stay in uncomfortable situations, face the mirror and walk through the storms, all the while being rooted in the awareness that it is the love that is important, and not the drama. How many of us are willing to do that today? Genuine connect often shows itself in the quiet peace of being together; in the simple, uncomplicated sense of being home. How many of us have even recognised that this is what our soul really seeks?
The modern age would have you believe that you are highly connected to a wide network of people. Frequent chat messages and updates mislead you are into thinking you are in constant touch with the other. The truth of your involvement, you will know for yourself in your heart.
For those wishing to discontinue such games and move from superficial relationships to relating, here are some questions to reflect upon. (You can also use them for Access clearing.)
What definition of relationship are you using to create the drama you are choosing?
What would it take for you to release your need to chase or be chased?
What would it be like to be fully present to the other in this moment?
What if there was nothing to prove or disprove about the other? Or yourself?
What would it be like to fully demonstrate and be the love that you are at heart?
If you find this reflection useful, please share it with others.
Image Source: ‘Bond of Union’, by MC Escher http://www.squidoo.com/Fine-Art-Prints-MC-Escher