A girl aches for a perfect romance all her life. She keeps searching for it in everyone she meets. Suddenly she bumps into a boy at the mall. A chance happening, but it turns out that the boy is the perfect match for this girl. A little chaos ensues but ultimately, the girl and boy end up together forever.
You know this story like the back of your hands, and I do too.
The idea that there is someone out there who is perfect for us is one that is more or else hawked by mass media. We see it in our favourite movies and love stories, and all around us. We ultimately hold on to the belief that there is someone out there who has all of our favourite characteristics and is just perfect for us.
Even more than the idea that they are perfect for us, we also believe wholeheartedly that we are perfect for them. That we do not need to do much (or even anything) to change ourselves because they will love us just the way we are.
This design of love is so mainstream that we spend the bulk of our time and lives searching and hoping to find our soul mate – the perfect one. We want a relationship that starts with that spark of love and then turns into an all-consuming fire.
We want the love we find to set us ablaze.
We search and keep searching till we ultimately give up a lot of good opportunities for a healthy love life just because it doesn’t have quite the level of excitement we have made ourselves believe that we need.
When we think about it though, a lot about the idea of a perfect one for us doesn’t make much sense, or any sense at all.
Granted, maybe there is a perfect one for us. One whom when we meet them will feel just right and will complement us in every single way that matters. There are over 7 billion people in the world, what do you think your odds of meeting this person are?
How likely are you to randomly bump into them on a sidewalk?
Odds aside, we also often do not take into account the fact that we are all changing and evolving. You are not the same person you were five years ago and two years into the future, you could be another person entirely.
Implication? The definition of your “perfect match” has changed multiple times over the course of your life with every new iteration of your personality. As you evolve and grow, so do your tastes and desires. As this change occurs, who you define as your perfect match becomes a different person entirely.
What’s more practical and often the reality that we eventually settle for after aeons of unsuccessfully searching for an unrealistic perfect match, is that almost anyone could be the one for us.
Yes. Almost anyone.
What makes a person right for us isn’t some list of features that comprise who we define as our “spec”. What is often more relevant, is their ability to be present enough to build a long-lasting relationship with us.
No matter how amazing another person is, if they don’t stay, if they don’t choose you, then all of their amazing qualities are inconsequential to you.
There are a lot more people out there for you than you realise, or probably even want to admit. What’s more realistic to search for isn’t someone who checks all the boxes on some list, but someone who operates on a similar enough value system and would be entirely willing to put in the work to make a relationship work.
So while you may never meet your fantasy idea of a soulmate, your odds of a successful relationship are much higher when you realise that it’s all about putting in the effort to make it work.
No one is perfect, and neither are you.
Superficially, it really is just easier to accept that there’s someone perfect for us out there. That we would not, in any way, need to put it any work. What we have with them will be perfect because they were made for us.
That’s the illogic that causes us to accept the romantic idea of a soulmate over the much easier reality of being able to build long-lasting relationships with potentially more people.
You deserve love and you will find it. Just be prepared to put in the work to make it something worth having.
Perfect love isn’t found, it’s created.