I finally realized why I haven’t found love. I’ve spent the last decade in search of something I’ve never defined for myself. I was chasing what my parents have: a man like my father and a 30-year marriage. Truth be told though, I’m not my mother, the world is nothing like it was 30 years ago, and I’m just starting to get to know myself. With all this unpacking, it just hit me this weekend that I have no idea what I want.
I’ve seen this with women around me. We all know people or have watched plenty of shows where characters are in pursuit of one thing but continually entertain the opposite of what they say they want. They’re lost. Too often we walk through life in search of what we’re told, or what we think, will bring happiness. The reality is, until we define them for ourselves, the goals we’re chasing will never be clear and will remain elusive. We have to spend time unpacking our wants and needs.
Until you define it for yourself, the goal you’re chasing will never be clear and will remain elusive.
This idea of knowing what you want isn’t specific to relationships. It’s the same for work, dreams, and happiness in general. On numerous occasions I’ve been told to write out what I want in a partner. I never did. In hindsight this is no different than writing out your dreams or to-do lists. I write those all the time. The items I don’t accomplish are often the ones for which I have the least amount of clarity. Go figure. Love, I’m beginning to see is no different.
It’s not enough to have an idea of love or of a dream. We need to be specific and sure about what we want, what standards we have, and how we are going to prepare ourselves for it. My parents' love is admirable, but I as I learn myself, I realize I don’t actually want a man EXACTLY like my father. In my many ways I’m very much a blend of both my parents, and I need a partner who will best balance me when the time comes. There is absolutely no rush!
As I set up my goals for the final quarter of this year, I’m focusing on the areas in which I have not been successful. If I finally want to knock off the lingering items on my to do lists, I better get real clear about what I’m seeking to accomplish so I can put a plan in place to do what I need to do in preparation. When it comes to love, sometimes we don’t have it, because we are not ready. Let’s use this time to work through our baggage and get clear on our wants.
When we don’t know what we’re searching for, how will we know when we’ve found it?