Do You Have A Type?
If you have a type, you have a pattern and the likelihood is that you have a toxic type because it’s another way of doing the same thing and expecting different results. Basically if you have a type and you’ve struggled to find someone that reflects this out of the 7 billion people on the planet or you’ve had a series of relationships/experiences with this type that have proved to be unsuccessful, it’s because what your type is may not be compatible with your idea of a relationship and in fact, some of the things that you seek in others you’re either blinded by or they may be incompatible with other things that you also desire in your type.
‘Type’ is an example of where in life you can do 2+2 and get 52.
You latch onto certain things, you make assumptions about what the presence of these things mean and likely assume that the person will be in possession of other desirable qualities, characteristics and values, and then you end up believing that someone is something that they’re not. You create a whole person in your mind and then you have to deconstruct instead of getting to know them and gradually building up a full picture of a person.
I’m guilty of this – tall, handsome, charming, shows some interest in me used to equal perfect for me.
With type, you seem to think you know what’s best for you even if it’s not actually best for you. In fact, I’ve seen people stick with type even if it leaves them miserable and/or alone.
If you have a type and it’s not working for you, you can immediately learn something that can give you some valuable insight and an area to address – you are stubborn. This means that in spite of compelling reasons to change course, you’re sticking with your course of action and thinking. You can then evaluate whether this dogged determination not to change is showing up in another facets of your life, such as being reluctant to opt out of a situation or assert yourself.
What you need to evaluate is what type of meaning are you attaching to the elements of your type?
Get a piece of paper and draw an outline of a figure and draw on the physical attributes. What colour hair, their size, how they dress etc. If you fancy making this a bit more creative, get a couple of magazines and cut out the parts you need, such as a smart outfit, dark hair etc. If you tend to go for someone who likes like someone famous, save yourself the drawing and put a picture of their face in instead.
Tag any have to / critical items with their meaning. What does it mean about someone who is for instance tall? Also rate the importance out of 10, 10 being most important, 1 being the least. I added on my ratings – it explains why I was with tall, funny, charming….unavailable guys.
On a second sheet, make a list of what you’re looking for in a partner that hasn’t got anything to do with appearance. Try to stick with what you feel is very important and critical and then you can also do a sublist of like to have.
Here’s something I discovered when trying to figure out what drew me to my exes – there wasn’t much. I didn’t look for any particular values, what I tended to look for was:
- Shows excessive interest in me and chases me. (Meant that I am wanted, attractive, desirable even if I didn’t feel the same way about them. Eventually I would feel that I had to return the ‘compliment’. I also believed that if someone showed an interest in me then they must be single and interested in a relationship.) 9/10
- Or I had to feel an overwhelming curiosity and desire to be with them, even if there was no real reason. Truth be told, I tended to home in on someone, experience a ‘zing’ of chemistry, they’d seem interesting and/or funny and bam. (I believed that I was able to gauge who I should be with based on a glance, ‘intuition’, and conversation. I believed that it meant that they were very attractive to me and that they would have other things ) 9-10/10
- I also tended to specifically seek out an ambiguous air. (I can remember doing this as early as thirteen. I guess I thought that it was ‘romance’ and that real feelings are on the down low and have to dragged out. I liked also having the opportunity to make stuff up in my mind. The relationship was better in my head than in reality.) 9-10/10
- Makes me laugh. (If they make me laugh, they’ll make me happy. Er, not true.) 9/10
- Intelligent. (They’ll be emotionally intelligent, more likely to be in a relationship and we would always have stuff to talk about and do.) 8/10
- Charming. (Makes them desirable, funny, and likely to work for my attentions. Turns out charming was normally ‘shady’) 9/10
- Good job. (Because my mum told me that having a good job was important for my security. I believed that a good person who could give a good relationship will have a good job. I know – ri-di-culous.) 7/10
- Makes my tummy jump. (Probably my biggest downfall – turned out to be a warning signal most of the time, that I was doing my usual pattern). 9/10
Again, put down what you infer from someone being in possession of this quality, characteristic, or value? What do you think that they will be able to be or do? Also rate the importance again. Anything over a 7 and especially if it’s a 9 or 10 is likely to be a blind spot – this means that if you find someone who you think is these, you’ll likely feel very attached to them before you’ve really gotten to know them in full. As you can see from my example above, I, er, didn’t really seek out any values. At all. Nuff said.
- For each quality, characteristic and value, note which other specific qualities, characteristics and values that you think that they’re going to possess. Classic one – very intelligent means that they’ll be emotionally intelligent. Or have same interests must have same values. Or have obscure interest that you have so you must be soul mates.
- Is what you’re looking for similar to any other person/people in your life? For instance, are they similar to a parent or made up of both parents? Is it one parent plus whatever you didn’t get from them? Have a look at the detailed pattern profiles that you’ve put together (or are in the process of putting together).
- What you also may find useful if you’re very visual is to make up a mood board of your type with pictures to represent the different elements.
- Whether you do a list or look at a mood board, how does it make you feel to see your type laid out?
- Can you see any ‘competing’ or ‘conflicting’ elements in your type?
- Does your type reflect your values?
- Did you discover any beliefs during this process and if so, what were they?
- Did you recognise beliefs that you’ve already uncovered?
- Can you see where your type isn’t working for you?
The important thing to realise here is that we all have certain things that we like in others although it is critical to evaluate the importance or even the logic of these things. There is nothing wrong for instance with liking someone to be intelligent or even super-duper intelligent but it’s time to realise that there is a reason why you think that you have to be with someone like this (add this belief to your list of beliefs from activity three) and you may be giving it excessive weighting or assuming that someone is certain things because they’re in possession of this, for example, intelligence.