Although one may want to commit to a relationship, it doesn’t mean that they feel comfortable doing so. On one side they may have to have the need to be with someone and at the same time, it could be something they fear.
And while this could be something that only has an impact on their relationships, it could also affect other areas of their life. When it comes to their career for instance, one could find that they are unable to stick to anything for very long.
This is going to mean that it will be difficult for them to achieve anything. But even though this will create pain, the pain is not going to be as strong as it would be if they were to commit to something.
The Outside Observer
So there are going to be other people who notice how destructive this is and they might wonder why one has this fear. And if they haven’t got any insight into why it is, they may end up making judgements about this behaviour.
However, when one does have this fear, they are not necessarily going to be consciously are of it. It is then something that controls their life and yet it is not something they have looked into any further.
There is also the chance that one is aware of this fear, but doesn’t know why they have it. Either way, it is sabotaging one’s life and unless something changes, it is not going to be possible for them to move forward.
It could be said that commitment is a big part of success; as if one doesn’t commit to anything, then they won’t achieve anything. Nothing happens overnight and relationships are not built in a day – they take time and effort.
If one sticks to something, no matter what happens, they are going to gradually progress. Talent and ability and nothing without commitment; the world is full of people who haven’t utilised their gifts.
Commitment is part of being able to not only survive, but also to be able to thrive. If one stopped eating and drinking, their life would soon come to an end. It is through ones commitment to eating and drinking that they are able to stay alive.
And the same applies to being able to thrive on this planet. Here, one is going to have to commit to taking certain actions and through this, they will gradually move beyond merely existing.
When one fears commitment it is naturally going to create conflict within them. On the inside, one is going to feel the need commit to certain things and at the same time, another part of them is not allowing them to fulfil this need.
If commitment was not part of life and one was able to survive and thrive without it, then it wouldn’t matter. But as commitment is a vital part of life, it shows how unnatural this fear is.
Although having the fear of commitment is going to mean that one has trouble committing, it doesn’t mean that they will always sit on the fence. They could have moments where they end up diving right in and not thinking about whether they are making the right decision or not.
And because of this, they could end up reinforcing their fear of commitment in the process. It is then back to how they were before and before long, one could do the same thing.
What’s Going On?
Under the fear of commitment is going to be the fear of being engulfed. This doesn’t mean that one will just feel slightly overwhelmed; it means that they will feel as though they have lost themselves.
And along with this fear, is going to be the fear of being abandoned. So when it comes to a relationship for instance, one is going to feel that they will end up being either engulfed or abandoned or both, if they were to commit.
Although these feelings will have been experienced in their adult relationships, their adult relationships are unlikely to be where they were first experienced. However, years will have gone by and one may have become disconnected from where they were first experienced.
In most cases, these feelings would have been the result of what happened during their younger years. The kind of nurturing their caregivers provided would have been the cause.
This would have been a time where ones need and wants were ignored and this would have caused them to end up feeling abandoned or engulfed. And at that age, it would not have been possible for one to do anything about it.
They were powerless over what was happening to them and they had no control. These experiences would have therefore been traumatising.
The Present Day
So as this early trauma has not been dealt with, their present day relationships and experiences are going to retrigger the old trauma. And unless one is aware of the original source, they could end up believing that what is happening now is causing the pain.
Unless the pain from these original experiences is released from one’s body, one will continue to perceive commitment in the same way. As this grief work is done, the outlook that out has of commitment will gradually begin to change. This can be done with the assistance of a therapist or a healer.
Oliver JR Cooper
Author of 25 books, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.