#228 - Are you crystal clear about what you want in your next relationship?

dating must have list positive attitude starting over

After posting my blog #251 – Your dating power is in your Must Have list, I’ve had a couple of questions about providing more specific information on how to create that list. While this discussion may seem pretty basic to some, it’s a good refresher just the same.

Here are some simple steps to help you start putting your list together.

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Determine the personal characteristics you’re looking for.
Our emotions create desires, goals, and life dreams to bring us a sense of accomplishment and joy. Dreams are created for the things we most desire in life.

What is your heart’s desire for a mate? Are you dreaming of a relationship that is intensely intimate, without walls, where you are so connected that you think and act as one? Are you dreaming of a man or woman who honors your intelligence and allows you the freedom to be you?

Is your dream of two happy, separate individuals that are so connected that their response and actions are as if they are one person? Have you ever dreamed about being so close to someone that you can feel their joy and pain without speaking to them?

I want you to seek your dreams and make them a reality, and to know what to do when reality is not matching your dreams.

What characteristics are you looking for in a relationship?
What is your ideal mate like? These are two key questions we need to review next. Beginning your search starts with a sheet of paper. At the top of the page write “My Soul Mate”. Then draw a line down the middle of the page. On one side of the page write Must Haves and on the other write Deal breakers.

In order to get you to think about this in great depth, you next need to add the sub-headings Emotional, Intellectual, Spiritual, Physical, Communication, and What I’m looking for.

Now, start to make notes under each sub-heading about your ideal relationship. List the non-negotiable characteristics you want in the Must Have column and the non-negotiable characteristics you want to avoid in the Deal Breaker column.

Remember, these are the non-negotiable characteristics you’re looking for in your next relationship. If you think of things that are “would be nice to haves”, they go on a different list.

Today, we just want to work with the non-negotiables. And when I say non-negotiable, that’s exactly what it means. For example, if you have a list of 20 Must Haves, the person you date ultimately needs to have all 20! Remember, your list is non-negotiable!

Your list must also be written in a positive format. Research shows that you attract what you focus on. Focusing on negative gets you negative results. Focusing on positive get you positive results.

The minute you fudge on your list and say “Well, he has 19 out of 20, that’s good enough.” you’re settling for less than extraordinary. The whole point of making your list is that you don’t want to settle…EVER!

Once you have your thoughts on paper you can start to simplify it a bit. For example, you might create a list that goes like this.
Must want to be with me but not need me.
Must be a Christian with strong morals and values.
Must have personal goals.
Must enjoy holding hands.
Must have a positive attitude.
Must communicate effectively.

These are just a few examples to get you to think and to see how to write yours in a positive way.

Yeah, but nobody is perfect!
That’s right. Nobody is perfect. But there’s someone that’s perfect for you. Here’s the thing that I’ve learned from years of experience. Every couple that’s in an extraordinary relationship that I’ve talked to has told me the exact same thing almost word for word. Their mate has brought more to the relationship than they could have ever imagined.

This one fact alone should be enough to not worry about how long or short your list is. God knows what you need and desire in a mate. If you’re patient and actively seek a relationship, He will bring you the right one and that one will have everything on your list and more.

Keep your list with you at all times.
You want to do this for a couple of reasons. Your list is dynamic, not static. What this means is that once you’ve made your list, you’re not done. You’ll go out on dates and recognize traits you hadn’t considered before that become an absolute Must Have.

When you find those traits, immediately add them to your list. Rarely will you find a trait that you’ll remove from your list.

Another reason to keep your list close is so you can remind yourself regularly of what’s important to you. Your Must Have list will allow you to temporarily step back from the infatuation after a few exciting dates and see if this is someone you should continue dating.

If they have everything on your list, then you can start looking at other factors of the potential relationship. Do you have a good intellectual, spiritual, emotional, and physical connection? Do you speak similar love languages? Is there chemistry?

If they don’t have everything on your Must Have list then it’s time to walk away and keep looking. Regardless of how much you have in common, how great communication is, and even great chemistry, there’s no point in dating or pursuing the relationship any further because you’re settling for less than you truly desire in a mate.

In the end, either your list is important to you or it’s not. Only you can decide if you’re willing to settle for less than you want, desire, and deserve.

I hope this information will help you create your Must Have list. To go even deeper on this subject, pick up a copy of my book, Dating Backward. It covers this subject along with other great dating and relationship advice.