You’re not exactly sure why things stay the same in your life. You certainly don’t enjoy it for the most part, but you find that the same occurrences repeat themselves as if you’re stuck in a loop.
Despite how hard you try, you always seem to end up back at square one. You encounter the same obstacles that have withstood the test of time, and which appear to be an inseparable part of your existence.
You just don’t get it. Why does this keep happening to me? Deep down you know that something needs to change, you just have no idea what that thing is.
That’s going to change now. It’s time to get off that hamster wheel and look at why things aren’t changing in your life. Let’s look at what you can do to gain a broader perspective of these reoccurring patterns in your life, and actually start moving the needle in a positive direction.
Pattern Recognition: Understanding reoccurring patterns in your life
Pattern recognition refers to recognizing painful reoccurring patterns in your life, which allows you to then break those cycles. Without recognizing these patterns, you’re bound to continue reliving them.
When you aren’t aware of the recurring themes in your life, the same thing will continue happening because the root cause has not been addressed. Whether it’s a long line of bad relationships, conflicts with other people, or sabotaging good jobs, your awareness of these patterns is the first step towards breaking them.
Without cultivating an awareness of the recurring events in your life, you stagnate because you’re not learning from those experiences (and mastering the lessons that they’re trying to teach you). Let’s start by looking at why these patterns continue repeating themselves in the first place.
You attract situations that you need to learn from
I always had a negative recurring pattern around money. I would often be stolen from, robbed, left unpaid by jobs, and continuously lose things that meant a lot to me. Often when I got a little ahead, I would be hit with fines or unexpected costs.
For a long while, this seemed to happen like clockwork. I believed it was out of my control, that I was just unlucky, so my response was to play the victim. All this did was disempower me more and fuel the pattern because I wasn’t looking at why this was happening.
It took years of this until I ruled out the possibility that it could just be a coincidence. So I wondered, how is this possible? How does this keep happening to me?
Inspecting this pattern brought me to a deeper realization, that I always believed I was undeserving. Metaphysically speaking, the universe obliged. Things didn’t change until I worked on my self-worth issues, changed my energy around money, and believed I was deserving.
It takes time to change the patterns in your life because there are layers. Usually, the cause is not what you originally thought. The deeper you go into the issue, the more layers you reveal. Unconsciously, you are causing all the reoccurring patterns in your life, whether they appear to be within your control or not.
Without taking a look into the patterns that you blindly operate on, you have no way to break the negative cycles. This is why it’s important to realize that there is always an underlying cause, and the situation won’t stop occurring in one form or another until you fix the root cause.
Where do negative reoccurring patterns come from?
Negative reoccurring patterns are often the result of unresolved childhood trauma. These unconscious patterns are usually the manifestations of hidden wounds that will continue to dictate your life until they have been healed.
Look at reoccurring situations as a beacon. One way or another, you’re creating this situation to learn a lesson from it. It’s pointing towards something inside you that is broken, and until you fix what’s broken, the situation will continue to occur in your life through different circumstances.
Same package, different wrapping paper.
Therefore, reoccurring patterns are there to serve your best interest, despite how painful they are. Every time the painful situation repeats itself, you are a little bit wiser, a little more healed, and you react a little differently until it has been overcome completely. This is the way you need to treat it.
You attract experiences that resonate with your vibration
You attract experiences that resonate with your vibration. The situations that repeat themselves are proportionate to the severity of your underlying wound. If your vibration is generally low, you’re going to attract all sorts of situations into your life that are on the same frequency.
If you’re stuck in a really low state, the universe is going to give you some big kicks up the ass to motivate you to change, otherwise, you probably wouldn’t. If it just gave you a slap on the wrist, it’s probably not going to be enough to deter you from creating that situation again.
You bring the situation with you
With that said, you bring the situation with you. It’s not a matter of making drastic changes in your life, because as long as you still have the underlying wound, you will continue creating the situation. Look at the wound as the cause, and the situation as the manifestation. Unless the wound has been healed, this problem will continue showing itself in your life.
That’s why you need to go inwards to solve the reoccurring pattern, not outwards. You can make all the changes in the world, but at the end of the day, they’re really just a distraction. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t make changes in your life, but focus on doing the inner work to resolve the pattern. Life changes should be complimentary to the inner work.
You’ve failed the class
After all, situations are teachers. That’s why you’re doing this human thing in the first place, to learn. As with school, you’ll have to repeat the same class until you pass it. With life, you will repeatedly attract the same experience in different forms until you overcome it.
In a way, reoccurring patterns push you to work harder on yourself, and they won’t go away until you successfully figure out how to overcome them. This is how the universe works. It’s trying to help you identify something that needs to be worked on, otherwise, you wouldn’t be experiencing it in the first place.
Your identity is attached to your experiences
You would be surprised by how many people I’ve met who were afraid of success. Or all the people who find it easier to emotionally abuse themselves instead of doing something they’re not familiar with, such as reinforcing a positive image. These people consciously pick out these painful experiences that lead them in circles, not because they don’t know how to become better, but because they’re afraid of it.
Doing the same things over and over again is madness, but you do it anyway because you’re comfortable with it. This is really the truth for so many of us. We prefer to repeat uncomfortable situations because they’re all we have ever known.
Identifying reoccurring patterns in your life
Now that you know what a negative reoccurring pattern is and why it’s happening, you can start identifying painful trends in your own life. Let’s look at how you can do that here.
Here is a table of common reoccurring patterns that people face, what they believe, and the root cause. If you have a look, often what you think about the situation isn’t what’s actually going on. This is why it’s important to really dig into why these situations keep happening, and why they do.
|What you think
|The underlying reason
|You constantly get into relationships with people who you know aren’t good for you.
|People in general just aren’t good for you. There are no good men left in the world.
|You’re unconsciously seeking out narcissists due to the way you were treated or your life circumstances growing up.
|You sabotage good things that come into your life by being unprepared, getting drunk, or avoiding them.
|You’re always just caught off guard. It’s too hard.
|You have self-worth issues and believe you don’t deserve those things, so you sabotage them.
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|Regardless of the opportunities for abundance in your life, you’re always broke.
|Money is hard to come by.
|You are fearful of success and have a negative outlook on money.
|You always seem to have a conflict with friends, family, acquaintances, and the people in your life.
|People always try to take advantage of you, and you need to stand up for yourself.
|You get overly confrontational about everything due to your trauma of being taken advantage of, which pushes people away.
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|You tend to avoid certain situations that are necessary for your growth.
|You just don’t want to deal with it right now.
|You can’t cope with an aspect of your life situation, so you continuously push it away instead of doing what you need to.
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|You always feel unappreciated. It doesn’t matter how much you do or what you do right, people will always look down on you.
|You are never doing anything right, and you always feel like you’re underperforming.
|You’re actually doing great (and people recognize it), but your insecurities prevent you from seeing it.
|You get triggered when someone behaves a certain way or says a certain thing.
|They’re completely out of line and your response is completely justified.
|Your reaction is disproportionate to what caused it. This is to project your attention away from a wound that the trigger would otherwise bring your attention to.
Identifying Your Triggers to Heal the Root Trauma
Now it’s your turn. I suggest reflecting on your life and writing down some common themes within it. Here are some questions to answer:
- What are the common themes within my life?
- What situations seem to repeat themselves?
- How do these situations make me feel?
- What is the common denominator of these experiences?
- What signs are present before the situation happens?
- What will I do next time it happens?
Look for the common denominator of your experiences
Think about the painful occurrences that seem to repeat themselves within your life. It doesn’t need to be the exact same thing, all situations are unique after all, but the theme should be the same. Look at the common denominator as the key thing that is always present when the situation happens. The common denominator could be a certain emotion, a trigger, an action, a place, or a person.
It’s important to identify the common denominator of your experiences because that’s what’s causing it. Self-awareness is a spotlight. As long as you keep shining light on the issue, the issue will slowly dissolve. Look into your life with nonjudgement to identify the experiences that you unconsciously seek out.
What are the signs?
Once you’ve identified some reoccurring patterns in your life, think about what you usually do when the occurrence happens, and what you can do differently. This cycle can be broken by being aware of this tendency, training yourself to see signs before it happens, and making the appropriate changes.
Consequently, your awareness of these situations will flush up the underlying wound, and force you to look at it. You need to keep a mental notebook of what works and what doesn’t. By doing this, you can begin adjusting your approach until these old patterns deteriorate.
What is it trying to teach you?
What is the situation trying to teach you? What lessons do you need to learn from all of this to actually fix the internal wound and move past this situation? You need to do a little digging here because each person’s wounds are different, and the situations that manifest from them are unique.
These lessons could point you towards an issue you had during childhood, which results in a certain way that you think or behave. It may be a mindset, belief system, or energy that needs to change. Perhaps it’s trying to help you accept something in your life without combating it or letting go of something that happened in the past.
Breaking reoccurring patterns in your life
By taking alternative courses of action to dissolve those stubborn patterns, you can begin reconstructing healthier courses of action that serve you. Create better habits by noting what works, and then consistently doing it when the pattern reemerges.
Reinforce the behavior to yourself until it becomes an unconscious program and you don’t need to think about it anymore. The more you create a positive shift in your emotions, attitudes, behaviors, and responses, the more you will break out of the negative reoccurring pattern until it doesn’t happen anymore.
Work on healing the root cause
It all comes down to healing. Whether you’re aware of reoccurring patterns in your life or not, your healing should always be a priority as most forms of dysfunction in life are due to neglected wounds. Once you see the root cause, you need to actually sit with those feelings and process them.
- Healing Your Emotional Pain: 10 Unconventional Approaches to Heal
- Emotional Release Technique: Clear Trauma and Stagnant Energy
You need to take responsibility for the painful patterns that reoccur in your life. Nobody is holding you hostage to them, you’re mindlessly walking into them, consciously or unconsciously.
Something important I’ve learned on my path is that nothing ever changes until we take responsibility for it. Often, this means taking responsibility for things that we believe aren’t in our control, or that seem unfair.
Taking responsibility for everything that happens in your life (as you are the creator of your life) is a step towards true mastery. So the first step to break these painful patterns is to recognize that you are the creator of your life experience. Nothing happens to you without your soul’s consent, for better or worse.
When you truly take responsibility for what happens in your life and stop playing the victim, this is when things actually start to change. Here are a couple of articles I wrote that will help you take responsibility for your life.
- Empowering Yourself Through Radical Self-Responsibility
- From Victimhood to Empowerment: Overcoming the Victim Mentality
Respond differently when the situation repeats itself
The obvious solution when you find yourself walking into a repeating situation is to act differently. Even if you don’t exactly know what the solution is, just try something else.
If you usually get triggered by someone when they bring something up, stop and focus. Instead of perpetuating the cycle by lashing out and getting defensive, try talking about it. Try understanding their perspective even if it’s really difficult to do. Do something out of the regular every time you catch yourself in the same situation, and gauge the results.
If things turn out bad again, then you can cross off that alternative path. If you did something a little differently and got a better result, then focus on taking similar approaches if the situation arises again.
Use mental rehearsal techniques to aid you
Mental rehearsal is a visualization technique where you visualize a situation going a certain way. In this case, you would want to play out the situation in your mind’s eye in the best possible way that you can imagine. If you were to take the path of the higher self and things worked out perfectly, what would happen the next time this situation occurs?
Repeat this technique until you know exactly what needs to be done, and feel confident actually doing it. To learn more about this technique, I wrote a detailed article about how to do it below: