Looking for and Finding Love

As the Greek myth on soul mates goes… “Once upon a time, when gods and people existed together, people had four arms and four legs. They had two heads and two faces. They existed happily as they were, and grew more powerful as time went on. The gods decided that the humans were getting too powerful and needed to be put back into place somehow, so they cut the humans in half. Each human now had only two arms, two legs, one head, and one face. They had to spend the rest of their lives searching for their other half to make themselves whole again. It became the point of life…” (Plato’s Symposium).

Perhaps this is just a myth of the past, but a thriving 2 billion dollar a year dating industry points otherwise.  People then and now have struggled in their search to find their “other half”.   The most important piece of the puzzle for a successful long-term relationship is having both partners be a right match for each other from the very start.  However, it is hard to find.  Some studies cite that out of 36,000 humans, there is only 1 right for you.  A good match means there is chemistry, mutual respect, emotional and intellectual connection. Without these qualities, no amount of marital therapy, designer lingerie, meals consumed together, or libido promoting medication will help the couple in the long run.

Here is what I found useful when I was searching…(please share yours if you have other insights…)

Define your values.  Think what is important for you.  For example, if you are settled on not having kids but your potential match has a different opinion, that is an automatic values clash.  Or, if you want to have a flexible career and a gypsy like life-style but he or she wants a white picket fence–that is also a problem.  Figure out yourself and your priorities first before looking for Mr. or Ms. Right.

Define what you are looking for.  Do you want a mate with a doctorate degree, or it may not matter as long as he can fix things around the house or she can cook a gourmet meal (or pole dance ;)?  Are you looking for somebody who is the life of the party or someone who prefers an evening at the symphony?  Visualize the mate you want in details, list his or her qualities on paper.  This will make it easier to recognize him or her in real life.

Look.  Asking relatives or friends if they know someone you might like is always the best.  However, don’t discount multiple dating sites, from eharmony.com to match.com with many others in between.  It has become more the norm and makes it easier in the ways that you can set parameters for age, education and interests that you are looking for.

Don’t settle if the test drive does not feel right.  “And so, when a person meets the half that is his very own…then something wonderful happens: the two are struck from their senses by love, by a sense of belonging to one another, and by desire, and they don’t want to be separated from one another, not even for a moment”  (Plato’s Symposium).  You will know after spending some time around your love interest if he or she feels right.  If not, run… Also, if he is dragging his feet and not proposing to you while one of your values is to get married, move on.  (I have a handful of friends who spent over a decade with boy-friends that won’t commit.  Not getting what you want only hurts your self-esteem in the long-run).

Be persistent in your search (don’t give up on love).  “Love is simply the name for the desire and pursuit of the whole”  (Plato’s Symposium). Therefore, go, seek, love… Your soul-mate is out there somewhere.  Those who seek shall find.

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