The myth of finding the ‘right’ person
One of the biggest fallacies in romantic relationships is that you just need to “find the right person” to marry.
On one level, this sort of thinking tends to exempt us from being the “right” person.
To some extent, we make others the focus and remove ourselves from growing and maturing to be the kind of per- son others should be looking for.
It’s a type of narcissism that suggest there’s little to no improvement necessary from our end.
The vast majority of advice on love and dating is externally focused, either telling people how to find the ideal person or how to change the person they have into the ideal partner.
This focus on others can be problematic.
While we believe it is critically important to know what qualities you seek in a partner, an overemphasis on searching for the “right” person often keeps people from thinking about how they themselves
can become the “right” person. One of the keys to making yourself Mr or Ms Right is to focus on the types of character traits two people need for a relationship to endure.
Unfortunately, you won’t find much advice on qualities such as patience, resilience, kindness, humility, respectful- ness, forgiveness, honesty, or trust. Furthermore, these traits are only cultivated when we are put in situations that re- quire them. For example, you won’t know your capacity to forgive until you have been dis- appointed or hurt by someone you love.
Too often, we overemphasise the importance of the superficial qualities that attract us to someone without giving much consideration to a per- son’s character and temperament.
This leads to relationships that are built, maintained, and evaluated almost exclusively on chemistry and physical compatibility.
Most relationships don’t suffer from a lack of chemistry. They suffer because many couples have a weak foundation and lack tools such as conflict resolution, and effective communication which are needed to perform basic, ongoing relationship maintenance.
To another extent, this notion of finding the “right” per- son communicates that we are relationship-ready and that there’s little work needed in us to make a successful relation- ship. This is of course, fallacious.
However, with this sort of thought process, you are likely to blame and project whatever relationship challenge you may face onto your partner — since you don’t need much, or very little improvement.
Furthermore, the “right” person myth seeks to absolve people of duty and responsibility in building solid relation- ships and marriages.
People think if they can just find the right person, the rest will take care of itself.
But true love is not found. It is built, deliberately, and can be continually improved upon.
And no matter how bad or good your relationship is right now, it can get better — with the same person.
When both parties are will- ing to apply wisdom to patiently work on their relationship and marriage, it’s bound to be good — get better — and be the best it can be.
And that won’t be because you found the “right” person.
Truth is, there is no such thing as right or wrong person.
There are just people with whom you consciously and deliberately determine to build a lasting bond.
And that is possible with any reasonable human being you believe suits your values, life goals and matches your lev- el of maturity.
The myth of finding the “right” person also communicates that couples who have successful relationships and marriages were lucky to have found one another... another social lie about romantic love.
Luck has an insignificantly small role to play in having a “successful” marriage.
It is also insignificant in meeting someone to build a lifetime relationship with.
Whenever you meet couples whose marriages you qualify as successful, they’ll most commonly tell you about virtues like intentionality, work, patience and commitment for better or worse — from which their true love was born and got to mature.
Finding a compatible partner is critically important. But what’s more important is being the type of person other people would benefit from being in a relationship with.
Becoming the right person requires a great deal of honest self-reflection, the wisdom and desire to mature, and the courage to make whatever changes necessary for growth.
Regardless of where you are on your personal relationship spectrum — single, dating or married — it is never too late to do what it takes to become the right person.
Your future or present spouse will thank you for it.
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