I've been single for quite a long time. I've had a relationship here and there, a few months come and gone, but nothing I'd actually gauge as meaningful. In fact, I think I've been truly single for about five years now. And I do find myself occasionally wondering, will I ever find love again? You know, real, head-over-heels, consistent, monogamous love. The kind that leads to living together, marriage, and maybe some babies poppin' out my vag eventually.
In this digital dating culture, though, I'm so prone to flings that I forget what an actual relationship looks like. Do people even do those anymore? I keep trying to make one happen, but sometimes, guys don't really seem into it. And while I like being single a lot — eating roast chicken with my hands by the kitchen sink and peeing with the door open — it would be nice to have someone to call when good or bad things happen in my life. I mean, I have my girlfriends and family, but it would be cool to have someone I can depend on and hook up with simultaneously.
So yeah, I guess I get stressed about my love life occasionally and wonder if everything will work out. But maybe I shouldn't. If you're obsessed about the idea of finding love (which, hey, I think we all are) here are some questions to ask yourself first. Because I think we're all gonna be OK.
1. What Are You Avoiding?
If you're obsessed with anything external, it's usually because you're avoiding some kind of internal conflict or question within yourself. You think something from the outside will heal you — whether it's a man, woman, relationship, career, car, new outfit, or dream vacation. The problem is that only you can heal yourself. Then, all the other things will come along and be great additions to an already full and healthy life.
Every time I think a relationship can save me from my own insecurities or negative self-beliefs, those beliefs only end up being exacerbated, blowing up in my face. If you're struggling with anything internally, bringing another person into the mix usually magnifies anything personal you're dealing with. So instead of looking for an external solution to an internal problem, try figuring out what you're avoiding first that's making you so desperate to find love. Most likely, if you spend some time doing self-work, love will come along naturally sooner rather than later.
2. Do You Love Yourself?
If you love yourself, you'll always be in love with somebody. And as silly as it sounds, it's hard to love someone who doesn't love themselves first. We can't expect to be rescued by someone else, despite what movies and books tell us. In order to be in a healthy relationship with someone else, you need to be in a healthy relationship with yourself.
So if you're obsessed with finding love, maybe it's because you find loving yourself difficult. If you try that first, then maybe loving someone else (and allowing yourself to be loved by someone else) will be easier to accomplish.
3. Are You A Good Partner?
I spent a lot of my life focusing on the type of people I wanted to date, without thinking about what kind of girlfriend I actually was. I had a huge checklist for the men in my life whom I hung out with. They needed to be loyal, attentive, honest, brunette, friendly with my parents, and they needed to worship me at all times. However, I never thought about my relationship behaviors. I was perfect! There was nothing I needed to change!
It was this kind of selfish mentality that was actually preventing me from being in a relationship. I knew how I wanted people to show up for me, but I was never willing to show up for anyone else. So if you're obsessed with the idea of finding love, maybe consider your own behaviors right now. Do you have good relationship habits? Because developing those might be a good place to start.
4. Are You Living An Active Life?
Someone who has an active, full world doesn't usually make their love life the only priority they care about. Are you taking care of your life in other ways? Are you making sure that you're spending time with friends, pursuing your hobbies, and putting effort into your career, so that when you do finally get into a relationship, it's not codependent and completely centered around your partner?
People are drawn to those who are interesting and passionate about their personal life. If you don't have that going for you because you're only focused on finding a relationship, it might be the exact thing that's preventing you from finding one.
5. Would You Be OK Alone?
I recently resigned to the fact that I might be alone forever, and it was incredibly liberating. I wondered to myself, if I never find a long-term relationship, get married, or have kids, would that be fine? What would that look like for me?
Well, I came to the conclusion that I wouldn't die of loneliness, and that this scenario could actually be pretty fun. I could travel without any kind of hesitation! I could hook up with a hot cabana boy in some tropical location! I'd have so much money because I wouldn't have to pay for a child to get braces! My friends and I could buy a compound together and become The Golden Girls! My whole world changed when I took a less fatalistic view of singlehood, because it's really not a death sentence.
So if you are worried about finding love, stop obsessing. If you love yourself, then you'll always be in love with someone. And the sooner you stop desperately trying to find love, the more likely it is to find you. I swear, it's like magic.
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