It’s funny how a favorite childhood game like Manhunt can prepare us so well for the future.
The rules of the game are pretty simple: There’s the chase, then the catch.
One team hides and the other team "hunts."
In pre-pubescent times, the game is often played girls vs. boys, setting up a prime analogy. When the girls are in hunt mode, they emulate their future selves by trying to find where their perfect men are hiding.
When it’s the guys’ turn to hunt, it’s not uncommon for each girl to find a not-so-secret hiding spot where she wants to be found. She wisely chooses the place where her crush on the opposing team will be most likely to find her.
She may be young, but her instincts tell her how to work it. When it comes to playing fields of dating and relationships, many of us set the bar quite high… maybe even too high to ever be found...
And sometimes, the results aren’t as much fun as the game used to be.
On one hand, there is something so damn sexy about a "bad" guy who makes you want to hide in plain sight with a neon arrow blinking over your head.
He’s like an addictive love drug that puts you on a constant, lustful high.
When you first meet him, you instantly begin sizing him up, from his killer smile to downright sex appeal.
Even though you silently despise the crumbling, immediate effect he has on your independence and confidence, you’re attracted to him.
Love at first sight, perhaps?
With no sign of a wedding ring on his finger, you decide it's time to play the game. But soon enough, you figure out he’s not playing hard to get; he’s just playing you.
We want the heartbreakers… without the heartbreak.
On the other hand, the "nice" guy gives you a sense of sweet security and comfort.
But will he really do what it takes to sweep you off your feet? Or are you just settling because you know he won’t break your heart?
The chase isn’t complete without fun and games, and "nice" typically does not want to roll the dice and take any chances.
We want the nice guys… but with an edge.
When it all comes full-circle, we want the entire package. We want the good guys, the ones who know how to be spontaneous, mature, sexy, loyal and confident.
We want the guys who will fight for us but won't tear our hearts to shreds.
Are we asking for too much? Have our expectations totally screwed us up or are the good guys just hiding too well for us to find?
According to Relationship Coach Virginia Clark, it is the concept of "wishful hoping" that may be a critical reason finding a soulmate takes longer than expected.
Clark refers to a quote by writer and psychologist Gay Hendricks. Hendricks says,
Longing is a persistent lingering feeling of wanting something you can’t quite get or something you’ve judged unattainable.
Basically, in order to find a great guy, you need to have a true understanding of what being a "great guy" means to you.
Examples of "wishful hoping" are things like making excuses for a guy when you don’t get the promised call from him or waiting for a commitment that will never materialize.
Most importantly, "wishful hoping" is thinking or assuming something in your relationship is bound to change when it quite possibly never will.
When you are considering all aspects of the perfect guy, it is imperative to evaluate yourself, take a deep breath and accept the truth.
Open your eyes, and make decisions based on the reality of the situation, not what you hope the future situation may be.
Once you truly assess what it is that really does or doesn't work for you, hunting for the right man will be much easier. By coming out from hiding and admitting the truth, you will save yourself time and heartbreak.
What are we even looking for?
According to Match.com, women have different attractions and partner requirements at different ages.
For example, 18 to 24-year-old women fixate on six packs, while women ages 25 to 34 place higher values on guys who are career oriented.
Is the right guy really that hard to find?
According to More magazine, this post-adolescent "manhunt" may not be as difficult as everyone thinks.
When your dating scene feels like it's stuck in neutral, it's most likely because you are not being flexible enough in your routine or with your relationship vision. Perhaps it is time to change the game.
Try to find a new hiding spot in the playing field and make it easier for Mr. Right to find you.