Yesterday I had lunch with a brilliant and successful man whose work I greatly admire. We were talking about re-patterning and breaking out of our limiting mindsets and trauma imprints, and the topic of romantic relationships came up.

“Yeah but Arden, can you really change the kind of person you’re attracted to?” he asked me. “Those imprints run so deep, and other kinds of people just don’t feel inspiring. You can’t help who you’re attracted to, can you?”


Now, before I tell you how, did you immediately just picture me telling you to settle down with someone boring, that “nice” guy or gal who would move mountains for you but who makes you feel absolutely no excitement?

(Admit it, that’s kind of what you pictured, isn’t it?)

If so, I already know where you’re limiting yourself, and we can solve that. I’m going to tell you exactly what I told my friend yesterday:

♥️ Your trauma imprints are real but they are not a lifelong sentence. We can shift them by giving you the opportunity to imagine and install the early experiences of love you wanted and deserved. This is the work I do 1-1 with my VIP clients in The Re-Patterning Project, and while I don’t want to unpack the mechanics in this post, I bet some of them would be willing to chime in about how it’s worked for them. (My favorite response so far was, “How did that work?? Brains are weird!”)

♥️ If you believe that there are two kinds of lovers in the world – the exciting ones who hurt you, and the boring ones who stay – then of course this will be reflected back to you in your reality! The secret here is to imagine a third option you hadn’t considered – a person who excites your passion and loves the fuck out of you, who feels just as excited by you as you do by them. If you’re deeply stuck it might take you some time to be able to picture this. That’s ok – what idea could possibly be more fun to meditate on??

♥️ You may be stuck in an archetype or narrative that is binding you to negative outcomes. As a dark brunette with a rich mezzo voice, I was constantly told I was meant for the roles of unrequited love, pain, and exploitation (think Lucy in Jekyll & Hyde), or of soulless sexpots (Lola in Damn Yankees or Delilah in Samson et Dalila), and that this made me lucky, that I shouldn’t want to be blonde soprano Marion the Librarian who got the happy ending because she was boring. Again we see a binary – here between interesting/painful and happy/boring – that we are invited to break ourselves out of. When my coach assigned me homework to draw up a new soul contract as The Beloved, The Bride, The Magdalen Incarnate and my first reaction was “won’t people make fun of me for thinking I can be that?” – I knew I had an archetype problem.

♥️ If you think that your pain in love and relationship fuels your creative work, then of course you will continue to call in relationships that hurt you under the belief that your suffering is noble because it creates art! First of all, it’s unnecessary. Second, trust me when I say that your creative work will be far more interesting when you’ve removed it from the siphon of your trauma, and that furthermore as an artist you owe it to the collective to be an example of hope. There, I said it. (Brought to you by the woman who gave up writing songs glorifying fuckboys and is now writing a hip hop song providing evidence that we’re living in the Rapture as prophesied by the Book of Revelation.)

♥️ You must make the decision that pain is boring. PAIN IS BORING. How much effort does it take a person to walk all over you? How much work it is for someone you’re handing the world to to reach out and take it and throw it in the trash? NONE. Decide that what’s interesting is someone who sees you and shows up for you. Anyone can raid your fridge, fuck you, and leave. Get curious about what it’s like for someone to actually do the thing that’s not completely predictable – which is to make an effort to be with you.

♥️ You must interrogate your erotic narratives. This is one of the touchiest subjects I have ever taught on, but it was also the key to shifting my relationship energy. I was turned on by BDSM, extreme power exchange, and exploitation. I don’t know where it came from, but it was there, and it felt rooted in my psyche as much as any other sexual orientation. When I finally put together that my sex drive was specifically steering me into relationships that were doomed to hurt me, I knew I had a choice to make, and I simply said “ok” and surrendered. IMMEDIATELY my entire porn folder, filled with b&w Tumblr kink images, ceased to do anything for me, and slowly began to disgust me. This was horrifying at first. I feared nothing would turn me on ever again. (Spoiler: that hasn’t been the case. 😉) It’s scary, but remember: our fantasy becomes reality when we commit to it. Find fantasies that work in your favor.

♥️ The “nice” guy/gal doesn’t see you. They may be great but if they’re incapable of seeing where they themselves don’t inspire passion in you, then what they’re really doing is putting you on a pedestal thay denies your truth for the sake of their fantasy about you, and that will be a block to intimacy. This is not what a healthy relationship looks like. Divest your idea of a healthy relationship from the boring/nice archetype permanently and do not apologize for wanting your passion equaled.

♥️ BELIEVE THAT YOUR PASSION CAN BE EQUALED AND DISDAIN ANYTHING THAT FALLS SHORT. Believe that being alone and spending your efforts coming into your power is exactly what will send a signal out to those extraordinary beings doing the same. YOU are the light you see in others. Be everything you want so you can attract who you are, and feel better doing that than spending time with anyone who either hurts you or bores you, because both those things are a waste of your time and resources.