We all know “The list” that I’m talking about. The list that everyone and their mother has told you to write out since you were young. They told you to envision what you would want in an ideal spouse or partner, to dream about it, and never let those standards fall or settle for anything other than what is on your “List”.
I used to love the list. I am an avid list maker after all. To-do lists, goal lists, grocery lists, even friend lists. It’s actually weird how much I love lists. But I’m not sure if I am just jaded, bitter or correct but over time I have come to hate this specific list…the “partner list”. I’m not sure where my hatred for this list came from but it started a while back.
I think it started when I realized that we as humans are often times completely unaware of what we need in the long run. We know what we need in the short term moment but really, we have no CLUE what life is going to throw at us 20 years, 20 days or even 20 minutes down the road. We have our plans and our ideals but if we are totally honest, life throws some curve balls at us and we have no clue what we need in order to sustain those events.
I do believe that having some idea of what you would like to have in a partner is a REALLY good thing, but I also think that “The List” tends to encourage us to skip over some people that could actually be really great for us in the long run.
I have an extensive past in working with teenagers and not so long ago one of the teenagers wrote out a “list” of what she wanted in a future partner and I happened to stumble upon it. It went something along these lines…
- Loves Jesus
- Not boring but soft-spoken
- Not into college sports b/c that’s annoying
- Good with money/willing to do my taxes for me
- Likes driving
- Went to college
- Not aggressively in shape but can carry me up a flight of stairs if needed
Now I’d be lying if I said that if I were to write out a “list” right now that some of those things wouldn’t be on it. Specifically the taxes & Jesus part.
What am I trying to get at? I’m not saying that you should settle or stop making lists. I’m actually going to say that you should get that list off of your dusty shelf, or make one if you never have and then you should FLIP that list.
You should ask yourself if you are all of those things on your extensively long list. I hate to break it to you honey but you attract what you ARE. Which actually scares the crap out of me because I’ve attracted some REAL WEIRDOS…this is beside the point though.
I think the idea of this list puts all of the pressure on the other person when really you should be focused on the type of person that you are. Let me ask you this question; if you met the person of your dream list right now in human form, would they look at you and say that you are everything on their list?
Hear me out when I say, I am not telling you to settle or abandon all of your desires. I’m just saying that like that teenage girl, we all have specific things in our mind that are super important deal breakers to us right now that later on down the road actually might not matter. You could rule out a super cool person in order to meet the criteria’s of your well-crafted “partner list”.
Maybe instead of being focused on the “list”, you should be focused on being the best version of yourself, especially when you don’t even have a hopeful prospect in your life. Don’t be focused on who this person that isn’t even in your life right now is, be focused on who you are right now. If you are all of those things that you so highly value in other people, you will attract the right type of person when they come along. Or at least this is what I’ve been told.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go take my own advice, examine my “list” and make sure I check all of my own boxes.