You’ve decided that you’re ready to begin your search for a partner. The time is right for you to have a great relationship and you’re ready to go for it. Now what?
It’s best to begin your search by being honest about why you want a relationship, then get clear about what kind of relationship you’d like to have and decide how you want to feel in this relationship.
Why, exactly, do you want to be in a relationship? Be really honest with yourself. Take out a journal and write down all the reasons. I recommend setting aside about 30 minutes for this exercise. Sit for a good five minutes after you stop writing, just to be sure you have everything down. Sometimes things will come up that surprise you.
Don’t worry about editing yourself. No one ever needs to see this but you. Do you want a partner because you’re lonesome, because all your friends are married, or in order to feel validated as a desirable woman? Do you have something to prove? Just write it down.
After you let that first assignment sit for a while, go back to it and see if you left anything out. Once you’re satisfied, write down what kind of relationship you want to have.
Do you want marriage, children, a long-term partnership? Do you want to live in the city or the suburbs? Do you want to travel with him? Do you want to do everything together or do you want a lot of space and independence? Does he need to share your religion, views on nutrition, national heritage?
This is not the same as making a laundry list of qualities, although you can do that as well. The point is to get really clear on the kind of relationship you are seeking.
Again, take the time to be thorough and sit for five minutes after you’ve finished just to be sure you got everything down.
The final exercise is to write down how you want to feel in this relationship.
Do you want to feel loved, understood, heard, or cherished? Do you want to feel safe and secure? Write down what this relationship will feel like. If you have trouble getting started, imagine that you are in this relationship right now. Close your eyes and envision waking up next to him in the morning.
Open your eyes and write down what your day is like. How do you feel? What do you do together? What does it feel like to be with him? Does he hold your hand when you walk together? Do you have coffee together in the morning? Write it down. Make it real.
You now have a great deal written down about the relationship you want to have. The point of this exercise is to get you in touch with what you want to such a degree that you are able to imagine it clearly.
It’s much easier to go for something when you know what it is.
Once you’ve written down why you want a relationship, what kind of relationship you want to have and how you will feel in the relationship, you’ll be well on your way to actually having what you want.
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