There's a reason so many plots of romantic comedies revolve around
fear of commitment: Commitment phobia is common in real life as well. If you've dated someone who's afraid of commitment, you may be exasperated by their flakey behavior. And if you're the commitment-phobe, your own motives may be just as mysterious to you. Psychic Deborah Graham, host of SiriusXM's "The Psychic Connection" and author of , has many clients who either are Get Your Head Out of Your App: A Psychic's Guide to Attracting and Keeping True Love afraid of commitment or have partners who are. If you're struggling with this issue, she recommends journaling after your dates to get insight into your thought processes and meditating before dates with the intention of unblocking yourself.
It's also a good idea to push yourself to go on three dates in three weeks with each new person so that you give them a fair chance, Graham tells Bustle. "Try to have as many conversations as possible, opening yourself up and connecting with that person on more of a soul to soul level."
Here are some reasons people may be afraid of commitment, according to Graham, and some ways to work through them if you see them in yourself and want to start committing to a partner.
Unwillingness to commit isn't necessarily a bad thing. It could just mean someone's going through a phase where they're focused on other things or still figuring out what they want, Graham says. If this is your case, just make it clear to your dates that you're
not looking for anything serious so that you don't lead them on.
You've Been Heartbroken
close off their hearts because they've been broken before and they don't want them broken again. "Their fears of their past relationships have a lot to do with it, because somebody has either lied to them or betrayed them," Graham says. "They have a hard time forgiving and releasing the old and worn out, so they allow that old energy to constantly enable them."
To stop past heartbreak from affecting you today, Graham recommends looking your dates in the eye to keep yourself in the present and doing a meditation where you visualize your ideal future relationship. Getting into that mindset will help you let go of the past and focus on the future.
You Have Childhood Trauma
Childhood trauma doesn't necessarily mean physical abuse; you may have
felt emotionally mistreated or neglected by your caregivers, which set you up to distrust others in your love life. "A lot of it does come from childhood: not having that love or that sense of stability as a child," says Graham.
In order to free yourself from childhood limitations, it's important to forgive the people who have hurt you in the past, including your family, Graham says. While this may be difficult, as their actions may not seem forgivable, forgiveness is really about freeing yourself, not excusing them.
You Have Past Life Trauma
As a psychic, Graham also identifies people's past lives as a potential source of present-day commitment-phobia. "It could have a lot to do with past lives, from a person you love or cared about who either left you or died, and you have a fear of loving again because you lost something that was very, very powerful and a love unlike you ever had felt before, and you felt still that loss in this life," Graham says. Graham recommends carrying rose quartz crystal to help release that old energy and
open yourself up to love.
A fear of commitment usually isn't just about your romantic relationships; it's a sign that you have some work to do when it comes to your
relationship with yourself.
"There's always going to be a lesson in some relationship or another," Graham says. "But it's that lack of trust that we have that stops us from feeling absolutely open and trustworthy within yourself." Exploring the emotions you're hanging on to, either through journaling and meditating on your own or through therapy, can help you heal not only your love life but also the rest of your life as well.