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According to the wisdom of that great expert on romantic love, Walt Disney, all one needs to do to find true love is look for the sweet face of one’s Princess or Prince, feel the power of love sweep you away, and you will live together happily ever after. Unfortunately, real relationships rarely work that way. In this article we examine some of the hidden assumptions and subconscious programming that cause many single people who are looking for love to make consistently poor choices in their search for a committed relationship. In the next articles in the series we will discover new strategies for partner selection and relationship building that can help us find lasting true love.
The most common error I see in the single world and among my clients is the tendency to confuse sexual attraction with true love. How many times have we heard that old adage “When its true love, you’ll know right away.” This may be a popular adage, but most mature adults have learned that it is rarely true. The love you feel right away is usually nothing but a surge of hormones called a “crush”, and it has nothing to do with real love. In teenagers, such feelings are normal, but unfortunately, I have seen it in thousands of supposedly mature men and women.
I happen to be gifted with a close friendship of 25 years with a very attractive man. Every week I find women of all ages and degrees of intelligence doting on him, giving him their phone numbers, cooing over him, calling him their long lost soul mate within the first five minutes of meeting him. Like most highly attractive men, he responds to most of these advances with a mixture of empathy, amusement and disgust. None of these women know anything about who he is. But all are convinced that this is the true love that they knew they would recognize right away.
Ironically, when I ask these women about what is important in their search for relationship, they never place appearance near the top of their list. But behavior of course is louder than words. Nor am I singling out women for their choices. We all know how famous men are for choosing women based on looks alone. When men are hanging out together it becomes especially obvious that their judgments of women seem to be based solely on various elements of sexual attractiveness. If a man shares with his drinking buddies that he admires a woman’s intelligence, or her sense of humor, the usual assumption is that she must be ugly! And like most men, I have been hypnotized by a woman’s physical charms into making some pretty foolish choices in my relationship search as well.
Well, what is wrong with making good looks the first criteria of romantic partnership? If I have lots of partners to choose from, why not choose one of the most attractive ones? Who after all wants the dubious distinction of having an ugly lover? And the sex should be better too, right? The most obvious answer to such concerns is that good looks have no relationship at all to ones capacity to be a caring and compatible partner. But in many cases that is actually not true. In fact, although a pleasant appearance is not in itself a liability for love, a very sexy partner is less likely to be a faithful loving partner or even a good lover than someone less attractive.
The reason is quite simple and based on sound sociological research. In our sexually liberated society, most good looking men and women can have all the sex partners they want, including partners who will worship and adore them just because they are beautiful. Scientific research has also proven that these people are consistently treated better than others in every aspect of life from service at a restaurant to being hired and promoted faster than more qualified candidates. It doesn’t take long for many of them to figure out that they don’t actually need to learn relationship skills.
Many will see little to interest them in monogamy, fidelity, even learning the skills of listening and conflict resolution. Why should they learn any of these skills, when their looks alone are sufficient to insure them a steady stream of adoring lovers? At first these chosen lovers will worship them as God/Goddess, and then when things get ugly, they can be dumped with yesterday’s garbage for the next starry eyed acolyte.
We laugh at these shenanigans when they happen to Hollywood stars. Yet many single people I know continue to play in this dismal game, feeding the egos of the Beautiful People, while potential partners who are eager for love and well prepared by years of personal growth and self-examination are left in the dust bin because the “chemistry” isn’t right. This is not to deny that some beautiful people have the loving hearts to make ideal partners. After all, even in Hollywood, there’s the occasional successful marriage. Statistically however, as Hollywood shows us, it is the exception.
When I have spoken to friends and clients about this pattern the response is frequently this simple disclaimer: “I can’t help who I’m attracted to. And I can’t be with someone I’m not attracted to!” This suggests that you are simply the victim of powerful instinctual forces beyond your control. As a hypnotherapist with 25 years of experience I can assure you that it is possible to take control of your instinctive desires. It is possible through the technology of inner mate work and emotional clearing (see our website at http://www.alchemyinstitute.com) to alter our desires and make them consistent with finding a fulfilling partnership. To continue to claim that “I can’t control who I am attracted to” in this day and age is to play victim to your own subconscious mind. And frankly, it isn’t very attractive.
Another popular justification for this attitude is the assumption: “When she falls in love with me, I will change her! She may have had many men in her life, but she has never had one like me.” It is amazing to me how often I hear this…not from people with movie star looks or extraordinary charisma and intelligence, but from very ordinary men and women of all ages. And I have to ask, what makes you different, more special, than the hundreds of other men that your supermodel has dated in the past…and could easily date in the future? While such stories of the femme fatale or handsome bad boy who falls into true love make for good Hollywood movie plots, I have never seen this plot succeed in the real world. If you do have the sweet loving heart that could make someone fall in love with you, I ask you not to waste it on someone who has probably never even learned the value of such a gift…and has no reason to value it now.
Another response that’s quite popular is: “my future soul mate is very beautiful, and she will be different than all the rest.” For a decision as important as finding a marriage partner…or even a girl or boy friend that cares about you, I don’t think this is very wise. It is the relationship equivalent of this financial plan: “I don’t need to work for a living, because I’m buying lottery tickets, and I know I’m going to win.” Yes, you might get lucky. But chances are very very good that you will waste a lot of time on some bad choices, before giving up with the likely conclusion that all women or all men are selfish, unfaithful jerks. While I hear this comment with alarming frequency from both sides of the gender wars, I know (even though they usually don’t) that this is about partner selection habits and nothing else.
Well, since we can hopefully agree that looks should not be the prime item on your list of mate choosing criteria, what other more important qualities should one look for in a mate? I have come up with a number of elements which I feel should be addressed with a potential love partner within the first two dates. These questions should be addressed with frankness and honesty as soon as possible to avoid lots of time wasted and tears shed over a poor choice. They will be addressed in my next article, Partner Selection for a successful Relationship.Write by spiderman hoodie