Relationships are complicated. Even if we have found the right person, it is often difficult to find the balance between closeness and the personal space that we all need. Crossing that subtle line is very easy. And once we do it, we begin to develop an insane attachment that makes us suffer. So, generally speaking, clinging to a person does more harm than good.
Why does one cling to a person?
Loving is not clinging. Love does not set limits, does not suffocate or imprison. Instead, the unhealthy attachment has the tendency to control and suffocate the other. In this way, is created a relationship of emotional dependency that takes away the psychological oxygen from its members. The funny thing is that the more one of the people clings, the more the other moves away in search of that freedom that he or she needs to be. This is why the unhealthy attachment often leads to the loss of the person we hold onto.
That need to cling often stems from deep insecurity. We cling to a person because, in some way, he or she has become a source of psychological security. His or her presence or the memory of him or her gives us the calm and confidence that we need by filling our emotional voids. Instead of looking for security inside, we look for it outside, making the other responsible for our emotional deficiencies.
How to stop clinging to a person in 7 steps?
1. Admit the unhealthy addiction. Ignoring the problem is usually the easiest way, but it is not the solution. So the first step is to admit that we have a problem of attachment. Have we developed emotional dependency on our partner? Or perhaps a possessive and controlling parent-child relationship? Or do we not let go of a person who is no longer part of our life?
2. Understand the reason for that attachment. There is always a reason to do what we do, only that many times we prefer to ignore it. When we cling to a person and develop controlling attitudes, there is a reason. It may be that a part of us cannot conceive living without that person. Or maybe we feel extremely insecure and fear loneliness. Or maybe we are averse to change. Whatever that reason, it is important to find it.
3. Letting go of the need to possess. Sometimes, at the unconscious level, we understand interpersonal relationships as if they were possessions. We believe that our partner or our children belong to us. That belief can lead to unhealthy attachment. Therefore, we need to understand that in life nobody belongs to us. We need to learn to love without possessing and accompany without invading.
4. Spend more time alone. The unknown usually generates resentment. If we have always been surrounded by people, for example, it is likely that we fear loneliness. So sometimes the best way to stop clinging to someone is to learn to be alone. It is not about becoming hermits, but learning to enjoy time with oneself so that our happiness does not depend excessively on the others. It’s amazing how much we can learn about ourselves and our feelings when we take time to reflect alone.
5. Take better care of yourself. When we cling to another person, our life begins to revolve around him or her. Often that means we sacrifice our well-being and relegate our needs to the background. To stop clinging we need to change that dynamic and take better care of ourselves. We must bear in mind that we also deserve to become our priority. Therefore, we must begin to treat each other with kindness and compassion, showing ourselves the same love that we project outward.
6. Give space to the others. All people, even those who love each other the most, need space. Although it is good to share moments, thoughts and emotions, it is not good for the other to feel trapped and suffocated. Therefore, we need to make a conscious effort to give him or her his or her space and use that time to develop our passions and interests. A self-confident, self-loving person who has developed a unique personality is capable of providing mature love that gives each person room to grow.
7. Trust yourself more. Self-confidence can go a long way toward maintaining healthy, nurturing relationships. People who are more confident in their abilities are less likely to hold onto others as a way to validate themselves. When we love and respect each other, it will be much easier for us to love in a respectful way, without being too invasive or possessive.
Finally, we must remember that before the person we hold onto entered our lives, we already existed and were probably happy. That means that the seed of happiness is in us, we do not need to look for it outside. To free ourselves from that unhealthy attachment, it will be helpful focusing on all the things for which we are grateful and make us happy, beyond that relationship.