This thing we call Love, which is often misunderstood, is most likely to emerge from a common connection between two strangers. It then blossoms out of mutual interest, mutual respect, mutual aims and a close friendship. An intentional strategy for selecting our partners can increase the odds of it happening in a three-step approach:
* establishing our own search criteria,
* taking appropriate action and
* allowing nature to take its course.
However, the step that seems to thwart most inexperienced people is the first one. We often do not give enough time and preparation to the type of person we are seeking.
For example, someone might decide she wants to marry a man who was handsome and had considerable money; one who was older and of the same religion. To that end she would date only the men she found most appealing, after she checked their family's standing in Who's Who? or the Times Rich List and assessed their age and personal beliefs. Then she would hang out at their likely locations. That approach might appear clinical, shallow and mercenary. But such a process would increase her chances dramatically of getting the right kind of person for her. She knows what she wants, and by surrounding herself with only rich, attractive men of a certain age, and with similar spiritual values, she would have many potential husbands from which to choose, once nature stepped in.
One could say that, like building a house, she sorted out the crucial foundation while chance, or nature, finished off the actual structure. Everything else in our life has a strategy, so why not our love life?
Doing the Necessary Research
Think of the process we go through in selecting our dream car. First we spot one we are looking for: whether BMW, Chevrolet, Mercedes Benz, Porsche, etc, having established a price range. Next we choose a colour and style, or model, with the help of literature, adverts or word of mouth. Then off we go to the dealer to try out our choice. But it would have taken some planning, not just turning up to get the car. All along the way we collected information and narrowed our selection until we had almost exactly what we dreamed of, and at a price we could afford; one which reflects the function it will serve and/or the level of success we have achieved. One with which we felt comfortable.
It is no different when it comes to making other important choices, especially the most important choice of our lives, except that with people there has to be a simultaneous match, while for a vehicle the choice is rather one-sided. Despite this potential hurdle, in the majority of cases, we tend to be attracted only to those who reinforce that attraction. Developing a selection plan with which we are comfortable increases our likelihood of success and takes much of the chance element out of our search.
But not only that, the selection plan, which shouldn't be too prescriptive, reflects who we are, what we actually want and where we're hoping to go with it. If we don't even know who we are and what would make us happy, how can another person recognise us or fulfil our expectations?
Elaine Sihera (Ms CYPRAH)
Emotional Health Adviser
"Respect and love begin with the self. If we have none, how can we give away any?"