I’ve recently had a relationship peter out with a wonderful man who has an extraordinary career – he’s won a Nobel prize, he’s an accomplished performer, a scholar, and he’s profoundly kind and generous. When we met, he was all but infatuated with me, and he made himself available to me at a moments notice – he was doting and flattering and inclusive.
I have a lot of shame around lack of professional achievement, and I tend to date men, like this one, who are extraordinarily accomplished, leaders of their respective fields. And invariably, my insecurity in myself plays out with me trying to compete with their professional pursuits (rather than investing in my own, still ambitious, dreams), and using their willingness to sacrifice their professional priorities to be with me…because I am so uncommitted to my own achievements.
The few times I’ve been truly focused and engaged in my own life, this is not an issue- at least on the surface, I’m able to show up as a confident partner – but I think I bring my personal insecurity into a kind of comparative competition – I’m attracted to excellence but I feel my own lack of comparable excellence makes me unworthy…and of course when the initial attraction and infatuation wears off, this is true…it’s a self fulfilling prophecy. Because I continue to invest more in *appearing* desirable than in creating value and pursuing my goals. I know this needs to change, and yet I have this belief that without external validation from a man, I’m worthless. I don’t know what my question is, but I want to challenge my beliefs and make a change.