Do you feel like you have to be perfect in order to avoid being rejected? Do you become clingy or demanding when you feel someone pulling away? Do you panic when you don't receive an immediate response to a text, email, or voice mail? And do you try to avoid some of these fears by numbing them with food or just a few cocktails?
If you answered "yes" to any of these questions, you are likely in the grip of one of five major (and all-too-common) relationship fears. Each of these fears can lead to specific and damaging behaviors that are likely to sabotage your relationships — even as you are struggling to maintain and strengthen your connections.
Our minds are powerful. Clinging to destructive thoughts and fears can often lead us into vicious cycles of self-doubt, so it's up to us to intervene in these cycles when we notice they are happening. That way, we prevent our fears from dictating our behaviors, and leading to further insecurity.
The first step toward change is understanding these fears — and the behaviors that are associated with them. Here's an explanation of five major fears that are likely to destroy your relationships. Get to know them, because knowledge is power, and it's the most essential ingredient for personal growth, both in and out of relationships.
1. "He/she is going to leave me."
Do you sense that the people you need for support and connection are unstable or unreliable? Maybe they are, and it's important to trust your gut if you feel like you're not being properly supported by your friends and family members or by your partner.
But ask yourself if you are truly feeling unsupported, or if you are reacting to a deep fear of abandonment.
If you fear abandonment, you likely have such thoughts as these: People who love me will leave me or die. No one has ever been there for me. The people I've been closest to are unpredictable. In the end I will be alone.
You have a tendency to over-generalize and read into the behaviors of those around you. As a result of your victim mindset: