Heartbreak

5 Ways To Change Your Fate When You're Sick Of Attracting Jerks & Manipulators

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Are you sick of attracting jerks and manipulators?

Do you want more than anything to just have a healthy relationship but find that, no matter how hard you try, you keep ending up with the same kind of guys, ones that hurt you?

This happens to many people. We all just want to have a healthy relationship and, as a result, we often are willing to settle for jerks and manipulators. I think we hope that we are wrong about them, or we believe that, with love, we can change them. But, more often than not, these relationships end in heartbreak.

But it is possible to stop attracting bad men. All it takes is a little bit of awareness and action.

Here are five things to try if you're sick of attracting jerks and manipulators so you can finally find the person who will love and respect you.

RELATED: Why So Many Amazing Women Give Their Hearts To Unkind Men

Five ways to turn the tide when you've been attracting jerks

1. Respect the red flags.

How many times have you seen red flags at the beginning of a relationship? How many times have you seen red flags and ignored them? More than once, I am guessing.

Many people who was repeatedly attract jerks and manipulators are people who ignore the red flags.

Often, people rationalize the behaviors that they see that they know aren’t ok. Many are willing to believe that they can change their person, make them into the person they want them to be, in spite of the red flags.

I have a client who was in a relationship with somebody who wasn't treating her well. She loved him madly in spite of this. What she chose to do was ignore the red flags, to hold onto the belief that things could change if only she stayed the course.

Unfortunately, this got her nowhere. He only continued to hurt her, over and over. Nothing changed. It was a waste of time, the time she spent on him, time she could have been spent finding someone who could really care about her.

So, if you see red flags, do not ignore them. By ignoring red flags, you are setting yourself for just one more failed relationship and I know you don’t want that!

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3. Be yourself in the relationship.

If you're sick of attracting jerks and manipulators, it's important that you be yourself in a relationship. That you not twist yourself into a pretzel trying to be the person they want you to be instead of the person you are.

Jerks and manipulators tend to do this. They tend to prey on people who are willing to not be themselves in a relationship and mold them into the person they want them to be. And then they leave them.

I know. I was in a relationship once with somebody who was very serious about their religion. I have been an agnostic my whole life, but was willing to embrace religion if I could have a loving relationship with him.

What happened next was scary. He told me that I didn’t have enough faith in our relationship. He wouldn’t have sex with me because I wasn’t a true believer. He said he was a man of God and used that to be abusive to me in every way.

And, because I wasn’t being true to myself but was trying to mold himself into what he wanted, I let him do all of this. I believed that if I was what he wanted he would love me. Even if I hated myself.

What I should have done, I know in retrospect, was to not turn towards religion in an effort to make him love me.

I 100% support and respect people's faith and religion.  If I could only have stood up to him, been my true self, then we both could have decided if our different religious beliefs could be accommodated in our relationship. We could have respected each other, therefore, and had a healthier relationship.

Ultimately, in spite of the fact that I twisted myself into a pretzel to be who he wanted me to be, he broke up with me. And I was devastated (but relieved that I no longer had to pretend to be a believer!)

So, if you are sick of attracting jerks and manipulators, make sure you are yourself in the relationship and that you respect yourself. It's the only way that you will be able to find the love that you want.

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3. Work on your self-esteem.

Many people who are sick of attracting jerks and manipulators are people who struggle with self-esteem issues.

Whether it's something that they have struggled with long-term, perhaps as a result of abandonment by their parents or an ex, or something that has happened in the shorter term, perhaps because of toxic relationships or lack of success at work etc, lack of self-esteem seems to be the most common thread in unhealthy relationships.

In my experience, people with low self-esteem don't believe that they deserve to be in a relationship with somebody who is good for them. They believe that they should be in a relationship with someone who doesn't treat them well, someone who takes advantage of them, someone who takes them for granted, because that is all that they deserve.

As a matter of fact, when they are in relationships with somebody who does treat them well, they are uncomfortable. They just don't feel worthy.

I know, after my husband left me, my self-esteem was in the pits. As a result, for quite a while, I attracted men who were manipulators, guys who would make me fall in bed with them with a few flattering words and then walk away as soon as we were done. Men who treated me with contempt and disregard and who made me feel worse about myself.

It was only once I started building my business, started developing my sense of self-esteem, that I started to attract men who were good and kind and worthy of me.

Last week I got engaged. I believe that a big part of my successful relationship is because I feel better about myself. That I was able break my cycle of attracting jerks and manipulators because I knew that I was worthy of being loved.

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4. Take stock of your exes.

If you're sick of attracting jerks and manipulators, it's really important to know what exactly it is that you need to stay away from.

Sure, it's easy to say that you don't want to attract bad guys, but what does that really mean? The definition of bad guy is different for everyone.

I would encourage you to make a list of your exes, taking stock of their personality traits, the ones that caused you pain. I would encourage you to make a list of how you responded to them in those relationships, so you can see what you can do differently next time.

I have a client who jumps from narcissistic men to narcissistic men. Once she finally is able to get away from one, she just jumps right to the next.

I believe she does this because she doesn't have awareness of what actually happens in her relationships. She doesn't recognize that her men gaslight her, that they make her feel like everything is that is wrong in the relationship is her fault. That people love bomb her and then reject her. This has happened to her over and over and over and, because she just can't have awareness around it, she continues to make the same mistakes.

A man comes into her life and starts treating her like her men before and she just doesn't see the pattern.

So, I encourage you to make a list of your exes. Take stock of the things about them that hurt you, the personality traits that they might have shown as you were getting into the relationship, the red flags. Also, take stock of what you were like in the relationship, of your role in what went wrong.

If you know these things, you can change the course of your next relationship before it even starts, setting it up for success from the beginning.

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5. Listen to your friends.

A really important thing to do, if you're sick of attracting jerks and manipulators, is to listen to your friends.

I know it's hard to do that sometimes. I know that it's easy to rationalize why your friends don’t like your person. Perhaps you think they don't know him the way you do. Or that they are just jealous of your new relationship. Or that they are bringing their own issues into their advice to you.

And those things might be true, to an extent. But your friends know you best. Sometimes your friends can see things clearly that you might not be able to see in your relationship, when you are being treated badly but blinded by love, or the idea of love.

Furthermore, your friends will also never forget when you were treated badly by an ex (as you might) or how sad you were when this new person tried to manipulate you (which you might). It's easy to lose sight of when we are being mistreated when we are in the middle of a relationship but, I promise you, your friends won't.

So, if you're sick of attracting jerks and manipulators, I would 100% listen to your friends. Your friends always have your best interests in mind, and they often know you better than you know yourself!

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It's a big step to recognize that you are sick of attracting jerks and manipulators. And it's a step that will help you reach your goal of a healthy relationship.

So many of us get sucked in by people who mistreat us and the fact that it becomes a pattern can be very unsettling.

But, there are things that you can do to stop attracting men who aren't good for you. Do these, and you can be free of the jerks!

You can do this! I know you can!

Mitzi Brockman is a certified life and relationship coach. She shares her 10 years of experience with her clients through coaching sessions, her online course, and e-book. 

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