Have you been on what feels like hundreds of dates, but found no one who fits the bill? While this might at times feel discouraging, the truth is if you were willing to accept almost anyone, you probably could have a relationship tomorrow. Think about it-if the only thing you chose about a person was their gender, how long would it take to find your next relationship? You could probably be in some kind of a “relationship” this time tomorrow. But thankfully, this isn’t the case for most people. While we all have certain criteria we want in a partner, mindfully fine tuning just what this is, can be the key to finding what you want and feeling empowered until you do!
Realistically, finding the right relationship is a numbers game. The more stringent your requirements are for a partner, the fewer are the people who will be able to meet them. This is a mathematical truism. As an extreme example that characterizes the thinking of many singles I’ve talked to over the years: if your “must have” list includes someone who’s won a Nobel Prize, speaks 6 languages, and has green eyes, there might only be one person in the world—if that— who fits the bill. And he or she might be already married! So unless you’re willing to wait until this mythical person gets divorced and you somehow miraculously meet—and then you may not even like each other— the obvious solution is to reconsider your what you’re looking for.
So what realistic criteria does your next partner have to meet in order to have a chance with you? Be very clear to yourself about what’s really important. This doesn’t mean having low standards, only ones that are acceptable to you and attainable by you. Make a list of the traits and characteristics that are non-negotiable, consider each one individually to make sure that it meets that “realistic” test.
So instead of asking, “how many people must I screen before finding the ideal relationship?”, ask yourself, “what’s really important to me in the relationship I am seeking?” This way you are clear about your choices. And that’s the main message here: Be clear on what you want. That way you are most likely to find it. But most importantly, until you do, know that you’re living this part of your life according to your own choices.