What Types of People Do You Attract?
You can tell a lot about how someone’s character by looking at the types of people he or she attracts. That’s not to say that most people only hang around with carbon copies of themselves, but in general, people with similar ways of relating to the world and managing stress tend to find each other. Are you the type of person that you’d like to hang out with?
The example that I see most often in clinical practice is one in which one member of a dysfunctional family attempts assert control over his or her life and works to establish healthier interpersonal relationships, expectations for self and others, and interpersonal boundaries. Before long, bitter conflict erupts in the home as the dysfunctional family around the individual consciously or unconsciously does everything they can to keep the individual stuck in the toxic patterns of the past. They fight to keep the individual sick because the healthy individual removes the illusion that everyone involved is doomed to live as a victim forever trapped in an unhealthy situation by circumstances beyond their control. When one family member changes, that means all individuals have the potential to change. If the healthy individual finally escapes from the chains of the toxic family relationships, the others are forced to acknowledge that they are not trapped and are choosing to wallow in misery as helpless victims of the past.
When you are out in public, take a moment to focus on how people talk to each other. You’re bound to notice that if one person in a group begins complaining about something in his or her life, the individuals hanging around this person tend to rapidly follow suit. Broke people hang around with other broke people and complain about not having enough money. Bitter people hang around with other bitter people and meditate on past failures and slights. Anxious people hang around with other anxious people and find new and creative things to worry about. On and on. The phrase “misery loves company” is a true description of a sizable portion of humanity. How likely would it be that such a group could or would attract individuals actively working to better their lives, despite the hand life dealt them?
Traits that many people consider attractive in others include success, gratitude, generosity, tenacity, passion, stability, ambition, positive attitude, kindness, humor, compassion, honesty, reliability, and purpose. How many of these qualities do you possess? How many of these could you possess if you made a concerted effort to change your outlook on life? Which of these are a challenging for you? The first step in becoming the type of person that attracts successful, psychologically healthy people is to realize that you need to become the type of person successful, psychologically healthy people would find attractive. Future blog posts will focus on ways to develop, grow, and strengthen each of these qualities in your daily life.
The thoughts and opinions expressed in this blog are those of Dr. Lee only. Nothing in this blog should be construed as representing official FDA policies or views.