Have you noticed that you keep on attracting people with similar traits into your life? That’s because those people are reflecting attributes you have yourself.
There is a famous saying: you are the sum of the five people you spend the most time with.
Good or bad, the people you attract are showing you something you hold within yourself. However, it can be challenging to recognise the negative traits in yourself, leading to resentment for specific people you attract into your life.
Life is full of energy and vibrations. How we interact with the world is how the world interacts back with us.
Where does this idea come from?
According to ancient cultures such as ancient Egyptian and ancient Hawaiian cultures, there are 12 universal laws that are designed to help you understand life so you can make the most of it.
You may have heard of one of them: the law of attraction. In its simplest form, this law states that you receive the same energy that you put out into the universe.
Some people also refer to the law of attraction as the law of mirroring or reflection. That is, who you are inside is reflected in the people and situations you attract into your life. Therefore, based on this theory, everyone you meet is a mirror.
While based on philosophy and spirituality, there have been many psychological studies testing whether the law of attraction actually exists.
A study by Byrne and Griffitt found that as people recognise more similarities to themselves in strangers, they become more attracted to them. This is further backed by research from Montoya and Horton. They agreed that based on multiple studies on the law of attraction, there is strong evidence to support the idea that we attract people similar to us.
Why do you attract certain people into your life?
Every person has a unique lens they see the world through. That’s because, as humans, we see the world based on what we know about ourselves.
Whether we are aware of it or not, we expect people to behave the way we do and set people the same standards we hold for ourselves.
So, it makes sense that the people we attract are people similar to ourselves.
It can be easy to recognise this in the good relationships we hold – after all, we all like to think of ourselves as good people. But it is harder to realise that the traits we hate in other people are actually reflecting the qualities we hate in ourselves.
Now, you can’t control who you meet in your life, but you have a choice on whether you keep them in your life.
If you keep negative people who make you feel worthless or sad, it may be time to look inwards. Do you respect yourself? Do you feel worthy of love? Do you love yourself? If you answered no to any of these, you might have found the reason.
You see, for better or worse, the people we attract tell us a lot about who we are. So you can make a lot of self-discoveries based on the people entering your life.
The negative people entering your life are trying to teach you a lesson. You have areas of your life you need to heal or improve. You see, hurt people hurt people. Being open to receiving this information will help you make positive changes in your life that will bring along better people.
You don’t attract bad people because you are a terrible person, but instead, you lack the self-esteem to reject these people, leading you to keep them in your life.
You may find that everywhere you go, everyone treats you a certain way. And you may need to pause and dig deep. Is it them, or is it me? It is difficult, sometimes painful even, too recognise bad traits in yourself, but only in doing this can you start to improve and attract better for yourself.
Every person you meet is a learning opportunity to discover something new about yourself and your personality.
Use these people to show you where you may need to heal yourself and learn to improve specific behaviours or traits in these uncomfortable situations.
This comes down to a lack of self-love and self-esteem for most people, so how do we change that?
How can I improve my self-esteem?
Before you can focus on changing yourself, you need to learn how to accept yourself for who you are.
To accept love and respect, you first need to learn how to love and respect yourself. But for many of us, that is much easier said than done. Nevertheless, you need to learn to love the person you see staring back at you in the mirror.
Take the time to learn more about yourself. Discover what you like about yourself and what you don’t.
You can do this by finding a quiet place and allowing yourself to be open and honest with yourself.
Make a list of the reasons you are amazing and another listing reasons why you think you don’t deserve love.
With your list of reasons why you don’t deserve love, go through it without judgement and see if you can find real-world evidence that these make you unlovable or unworthy of respect. You’ll realise you probably can’t find actual evidence for it, but instead, you just feel that these reasons make you unworthy of love and respect.
Many people with low self-esteem feel this way, and doing the exercise above is a method employed by therapists to help people realise that not all their self-beliefs are true.
When dealing with low self-confidence, or mental health problems such as anxiety or depression, your brains trick you into believing you are unworthy. It makes you think that the reason you feel anxious is your fault. That you are faulty. Broken.
But you’re not; you just need healing.
Next time you feel unworthy, question your mind. Tell yourself you are worthy. Worth respect. Worthy of love.
And to attract similar people into your life, make sure you are giving back those same levels of respect and love.
Start taking small, actionable steps to improve the things you can change and want to. For the things you can’t change, learn to accept your imperfections. Never forget that nobody is perfect, and you are allowed to be flawed.
And don’t be afraid to demand better from the people in your life. An essential part of attracting people that lift you is to set boundaries and be firm with them.
Who do you want to attract to your life?
Once you have learned to accept yourself as you are and realise how worthy of love you are, you can focus on healing and improvement.
In other words, what kind of person do you want to be?
It’s a big question to ask, I know. But it is crucial to get to know yourself and work towards the person you want to be if you want to attract people who reflect the better you.
Fear of change leads us to attract what we are familiar with.
Change is a scary thing. As humans, we love to live in our comfort zone. But as the old saying goes, there’s no growth in the comfort zone, and there’s no comfort in the growth zone.
For this reason, it is very easy to keep old, bad habits and continue to attract the same types of people that keep us in a negative zone. It may not feel nice, but it is familiar, which is comforting.
So, how do you start to make the healing changes to attract better for yourself?
Focus on inner-healing
Take stock of your present situation. Are the situations around you presenting you with signs for healing?
To change your circumstances, you have to change or heal aspects of yourself internally.
It is certainly far easier to know you need to heal than to go through the process.
Remember that you don’t have to do it alone. If you have deep-rooted emotional wounds that need healing, you could benefit from talking to a therapist to help guide you. There is no shame in asking for help. Asking for help to heal is one of the bravest, most courageous things you can do for yourself.
Get clear on the kind of person you want to be
You need to create a list of personality traits and actions you admire in other people you feel you would like to embody.
You don’t need to change your entire personality, there is nothing wrong with being who you are, but you may find that, in particular situations, you act in ways you dislike about yourself as a defence mechanism.
Making small changes to address this will lift yourself to be a person you feel more comfortable being, leading you to attract people that resonate with the vibrations and behaviour you are putting out into the world.
What do you want out of life?
Personality and behaviour aren’t the only aspects of your life that attract people to you. Knowing the direction you want to go in life will really help you attract the people equipped to support you on your journey.
You don’t have to have an exact idea of where you want to be, but you should get clear on the direction you wish your life journey to take.
For example, if you are in a job you hate, you will harbour many negative feelings and resentment. To improve this, you need to work out how to improve your situation.
You may not be able to give up your job just because you don’t like it, but you can indeed find time outside of your work hours to take steps towards acquiring the necessary skills to leave it.
Get clear on your goals
Setting goals is an essential component of self-growth.
Having goals to work towards gives you purpose in life and allows you to attract people and situations that align with your intentions.
Journaling is a great way to work out a path to becoming the person you want to be.
Start by choosing two or three goals that you want to achieve. These could be about your health, work-life, relationships…anything you feel is important to you that you want to improve.
Make sure your goals are SMART – that is:
- Time Frame
This will help you narrow precisely what you want and why.
Once you have your goal in place, make sure you split it into small daily actionable steps that feel achievable in your day-to-day life.
After all, goals are achieved through small, consistent actions.
If you make goals that you aren’t passionate about or that are unrealistic to your current situation, you will find yourself struggling, so make sure you are honest with yourself about how much you can achieve daily.
You can always adjust your goals as you progress; the most important thing is finding a starting point that you can commit to.
If you are having trouble getting clear on your goals, consider getting a goal planner like our Daily Goal Setter Planner.
If you feel that the people you are attracting into your life are dragging you down, pay attention to what they are reflecting back to you.
Use every person that enters your life to learn how to heal and improve.
Keep the people that lift you up and demand better from those that drag you down by changing those characteristics you hold within yourself.
Don’t be afraid to acknowledge your imperfections; everybody has them. But by working on the elements of yourself you want to change, you will find yourself attracting people and situations that make you much happier.
And remember, no matter where you are in your healing journey, you are always worthy of love and respect, so do not settle for anything less.
In time, you will find that you attract the people who make you feel fulfilled and renew your passion for life.