We hear this all the time: to attract love you have to love yourself
BUT WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?
The prerequisite to loving oneself is a sense of wholeness. When we are scattered, when we disown parts of ourself, and we create separation within, we are actively NOT loving ourselves. The process of integration is the process of falling in love with oneself. And wholeness is what attracts wholeness.
When we are seeking externally that which we don't have inside, that's when we run into issues with our ego, our insecurity and our repetitive patterns. That's what we have, as Freud would call it, repetition compulsion. And even if that "love" fulfills itself, which isn't even the end goal unconsciously (unconsciously it's to play out and resolve a trauma, we just think consciously that we're seeking love) it becomes an immature love. Most of the time it's quite simple. When we don't love ourselves, we're actively looking for love out there. But how is this really possible in an increasingly high stakes arena? We're all so de-personalized as a society when it comes to dating, we swipe people. We ghost.
The issue with making other people give us what we don't give ourselves is that we create codependency which naturally is not healthy. We end up making the other person responsible for our needs, and that is parasitic. Mature love functions in a state of harmony where both people are responsible for themselves so they have more to give one another from a genuine place of giving, not as an obligation.
The problem here is that most people mistake obligation for love. Think about how many times you've felt obligated for friends or family and recognize that that might be telling you something is inherently unhealthy in the relationship. Because within a truly positive and healthy framework, even the most mundane things are things you WANT to do for the other person not because you feel like you HAVE to. Not to mention if we do have healthy relationships and therefore healthy boundaries, no one would pressure or guilt you into something you don't want to do. Therefore obligation cannot possibly exist.
In this vein it's important to look at male and female energies. In no way is this to do with expressed gender- male and female energies are a natural part of all of us just like yin yang and the elements. The issue with our current society is that we are forced into imbalance. We are forced to express only one or the other, or have highly exaggerated male energies AND we largely live in an unconscious and weakened energetic state. What I mean by this is internally, reaching a place of non-binary is essential. That's why the ascended masters all had a rather androgynous way of expression. Even if externally you are cis gendered, it's important to understand how both M/F energies are fine tuned within. Because again, if we have a lack of male energy within, we'll seek that male energy outside of us but usually in the unconscious form and vice versa.
Example: If someone is heavily skewed towards the feminine, but the feminine is not well cultivated/conscious because the masculine is disowned, then this person will likely seek out very authoritative "strong" male and unconscious energies that end up being domineering towards her
It's difficult to integrate and develop both energies and bring them into the conscious because our society has been so heavily skewed towards the unconscious masculine energy and to a weakened feminine energy. Not to mention, women have been programmed to disown their own feminine energies because it is believed to be "weak" and lean towards masculine energies to survive in the work place. Think about it. Why is there so much shame surrounding a woman's menstrual cycle? Why is it that women have so much trouble conceiving in this current time? Why are there so many cases of breast and ovarian cancer? Why are we all skewed towards the rational masculine side of the brain and being right handed is the norm? Even the most subtle expectations skew our balance. We as humans are sensitive beings, we have just learned to disown that too. "We" in the general sense, not you and I :)
The divine, conscious expression of both of those energies is something very different. It exudes a strength, not an insecurity. Luckily, with the current planetary energies, men are learning to open their hearts and accept the divine feminine within. Women are learning to empower their feminine energies too and change the perception of feminine energies as weak (both polarities are weak in their unconscious and underdeveloped form, of course-- and no matter how domineering the unconscious masculine is, it is still weak because all of that bravado is a display of insecurity and acknowledgement of weakness. All that forcing is going to break them not to mention, solar plexus chakra focused power over others mentality cannot survive in our Aquarian heart centered, power of love mentality). With this comes a new understanding of what it means to embody masculine/feminine.