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How to Love an Emotionally Healthy Man
How to Love an Emotionally Healthy Man
By Nancy Pina

Most people I work with as a relationship coach believe they have a particular "type" in love. They base relationship choices on a specific personality or physical look. They're looking for chemistry and fear that anything outside this established model will be boring, incompatible and physically unappealing. One primary key to attracting love that will last is the willingness to look at what is not working in your relationships and opening your heart to change.

If the men you have chosen to love have not resulted in fulfilling, lasting and loving relationships, ask yourself:

• Am I drawn to "bad boys" in love instead of reliable and stable men?
• Does the mystery of not knowing if he cares drive me to pursue this type of guy with even more determination?
• Do I want to be with him more the less he communicates with me?
• When a guy wants more from me emotionally, do I lose interest?

If you are seeing yourself in those types of relationships, the barrier you're struggling with is the fear of revealing your authentic self. It is only through vulnerability in your interactions with others that you will be able to attract the right one for love. For many individuals, being an open book signals emotional caution because it is associated with heartbreak. If you've vowed not to allow anyone to have that power over your heart again, you've probably built a wall which keeps the very thing you desire away.

Do you have a difficult time being vulnerable with others? Go through the following quiz and see how many statements are true in your significant relationships:

How Vulnerable Are You?

• I am generally on the offensive, and attack, blame or correct others.
• I always need to be the strong one, the person who has it all together.
• I'd rather please others than reveal my true emotions.
• I don't want to rock the boat in relationships.
• I shut down and keep my true feelings to myself when tension arises.
• I believe I can't let my guard down. 
• I'll never let anyone hurt me again.
• Revealing my emotions is very risky.
• Talking about the past serves no purpose.
• I have no problems, and if I did, I'd never tell. 
• No one respects a weak person.

If you find that your answers affirm a fear of vulnerability, the next step to relationship readiness is healing from the initial heartbreak. Hiding behind a facade only leads to attracting those who cannot fulfill your emotional needs.

Stuck in the Past

Many people talk about finding the right one, but are very resistant to taking the steps necessary to meeting that person. You may say, "I would do anything to meet the right guy, just tell me what to do!" The painless actions are the tangible ones: making yourself available, changing your routine, and telling your friends to set you up.

That's the Easy Part

The real work is before dating. It is vital to examine your past relationship pattern as well as your thoughts and words about love, men, and how you expect to be treated in a relationship. Therein lies the challenge: the greatest blessings and personal revelations are always hidden within the depths of your greatest fears.

Change is Possible

You've heard that what one focuses on, the mind will magnify. With time and nurturing, those thoughts will become reality. You may be astonished how often you seek the wrong thing in your love life and for yourself.

Each time you find yourself speaking, saying or thinking things that do not line up with the dreams and desires of your heart, mentally stop yourself and simply say the exact opposite. It sounds very elementary, but it is a powerful exercise you can incorporate to reverse what you expect out of relationships. 

When you take this step towards renewing your mind, you will not only be able to see emotionally healthy men, but you will be attracted to them as well.  A new relationship pattern will fall into place, allowing you to be treated with love and respect.

Nancy Pina is a highly recognized author, relationship coach and speaker. She is dedicated to helping individuals form emotionally healthy relationships through her practical Christian-based advice.  Visit www.rightrelationshipstv.com for articles and exercises. Her recent book and app can be found at http://www.rightrelationshipstv.com/books.html. Permission granted for use on DrLaura.com.
Tags: Dating, Relationships
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