This fantastic article was written by Elan Divon, a Harvard-educated author, thought leader, and non-profit executive. We encourage you to check out his website here!
Whether you are single and looking for love, or found love and want the sizzle back in your relationship, there are a few things you can do to up your game.
This article offers tips and wisdom that will help. Prepare for a few surprises.
Let’s start with the single community.
How To Attract Your Perfect Match
There are so many beautiful, well-rounded and accomplished women and men out there and somehow they are single. Why?! Part of it is our culture. In the past, if something broke you fixed it. Today if something breaks you throw it away and get another one. This applies to romantic relationships. We have so many options to meet a potential mate that our pool is not limited to our hometown; but to our country, continent, and the entire world!
And with so many hypothetical “options” why settle for less? Why stick around when the going gets tough? And why give your relationship a hard fought effort if 10 other potential suitors are vying for your attention? This is the prevailing mentality, and it’s making it difficult to attract a committed mate.
How To Find Your Mr. or Mrs. Right
There’s only one way. You’ve got to release yourself from the pressure of finding one. It’s the Golden Rule of dating, and life itself. I’ll explain.
Something magical happens when you absolve yourself from the pressure of finding a partner. For one, it demonstrates that you have faith in yourself (and the universe) and trust that you’ll be ok no matter what. After all, no one wants to be with someone that appears desperate or too eager because it sends the message that there is something “flawed” or “weak” in that person. It projects neediness, as though you need someone else to validate your existence and self-worth. And you can’t expect someone to desire you if you need them! Needing and desiring are fundamentally incompatible.
So the first step in finding a partner is to liberate yourself from the expectation that you must find one. Instead, you must believe that YOU are enough: That you are whole and beautiful, and worthy as an individual. You don’t need someone else to “complete” you. You are already complete. You are already whole. And when you accept this truth you will radiate the kind of energy that potential suitors find very attractive.
Now this doesn’t mean you stop putting your feelers out there. You still have to engage with the world. But you do it in such a way that is not “attached” to outcomes. There’s no clinging, no desperation, no ‘neediness.’ This is the essence of spiritual teachings like the Bhagavad Gita which says that you should ‘act for action’s sake and not because you are attached to the fruits of your actions.’
Do what you need to do; which in this case means go to parties, bars, mixers, and online dating apps – but do it in such a way that your happiness and self-worth do not depend on it.
‘When the student is ready, the master will come.’ It’s that kind of thing. You have to condition yourself and emit your own sparkle if you find that sparkle with someone else. A lot of this has to do with core beliefs and believing in your own self-worth and potential. We’ll touch upon this at length in our next article.
How to Rekindle the Spark in a Long-Term Relationship
We all know that after the butterflies and fuzzies in a relationship comes to the reality. The honeymoon ends and the veil shrouding your partner (i.e. your own mental projections) dissolve into dirty dishes, constant bickering, and snoring in bed. We’ve all been there. When routine enters a relationship, a lack of appreciation and desire tends to follow, and you start to wonder – is this it?
5 Things You Can Do To Keep The Spark Alive
There are, however, a number of things you can do to maintain the spark alive.
A few years ago a U.N. report came out that crowned Denmark as the happiest country in the world. Why the report concluded? Because the Danish don’t have grandiose expectations. Unrealistic expectations lead to untold disappointments. Everything you learned about romance from Hollywood and pop-culture is fantasy. Throw it out the window.
Relationships are amazing, but they are also hard work. They don’t spontaneously grow and need constant nurturing and tending to. Relationships have ups and downs and will be tested – even when you’re with your ideal partner. We all have our shtick. The trick is to figure out your core needs and values and stick to them, but yield and show flexibility on all the rest. Which leads us to point # 2.
2. Relationships Are Not 50-50, They Are 60-40
Always give more than you get. Give 60% and expect 40%. The moment you start thinking – ‘hey, I took out the garbage, and made dinner, and took the dog for a walk and am not getting my fair share’ is the moment you start resenting your partner for not doing enough. Instead, condition yourself always to give more then you receive and ironically, you will find that you actually receive more. Remember:
Remember: Relationships are not transactions. They are opportunities for personal transformation through a mutual attraction. Which leads us to the most important point of all – what attracted you to your partner in the first place?
3. The Mystery
The irony of life is that we all want to be understood for who and what we are, and yet love mystery and the element of surprise: Novelty and surprise being a natural stimulant for the brain. We like to explore parts unknown in another person, whether emotional, intellectual or physical and hence get to know someone!
That’s what courtship is all about. And desire emerges in the tension between the known and the unknown. It’s, therefore, the journey of uncovering the mystery that is most exciting – not the result. How can you revive the novelty in your relationship if you’ve been together for years?
According to relationship expert Esther Perel; (check out her incredible TED talk here), start observing your partner in different environments. For example, when he or she is in their element. This will help you see your partner in a new light! As Marcel Proust once said, “mystery is not about traveling to new places but about looking with new eyes.”
Whether it’s seeing your partner doing something they are passionate about, or seeing him or her hold court with friends or meet new people in a social setting, you need to see your partner with fresh eyes. In situations where your partner is according to Perel, “radiant and self-sustaining.” (Which brings us back to the point of feeling whole without your partner being a very desirable thing).
It makes that heart grow stronger. Give each other the space to see friends, get out, travel, and reconnect to your individual self. You will soon miss your partner, and this longing will bring with it a dash of novelty each time you reconnect.
Laughing together is one of the best ways to bond with another person. When you laugh you let your guard down, open up, and be yourself. When two people laugh together, it opens up space where two souls can meet. So go ahead – laugh! (and if you need help – try laughter yoga)
In concluding, relationships are super complex, and it’s hard to cover the subject in a single article let alone a single book. But there is one thing I can tell you with certainty:
If you want to work on your relationship, you need to work on yourself. If you want to find or rediscover that magical “spark” with someone special, you first have to cultivate that spark in YOU. We are all works in progress, and relationships are like mirrors that help reflect who we are and what we need to improve.
After all, ‘you don’t see the world as it is, but as you are.’
Love and light,