Why you need to rethink romance



What have you learnt from films and TV about romance? If you’re being entirely honest, it’s probably not anything realistic, and yet many of us dream of meeting our match in that glamorous, romantic manner. Films and TV have an unfortunate tendency to focus on physical appearance and wealth as reasons for attraction, and yet the real world is far more complex than this.

I believe that there are ways you can reprogram your mind to stop yourself making instant judgements about people you meet who could be a potential match. I think there are around 1,500 factors that we can use to determine whether someone is our soul mate, and yet (partly because of the influence of film and TV) we only tend to refer to around 15 of these factors and assume the others.

Attractiveness doesn’t equal a match

Imagine you’re introduced to someone – in those few seconds, you’ve probably accessed those 15 factors you use to judge whether someone is attractive. These include body shape, dress sense, facial features, eye colour, and attentiveness, which you will use to determine how attracted you are to someone.

The problem is that most people don’t get that initial assumption right. These more superficial factors don’t determine whether two people will be happy in a long-term relationship; attractiveness counts for much less when you’re facing life’s challenges together.  But, because the media has told us that attractiveness or social standing determines the successfulness of a relationship, we have assimilated this behaviour into our own lives. Because that initial physical attraction isn’t there, you’re assuming that you will have a negative reaction to all the other factors in your brain you could use to determine a great relationship.

Getting past first impressions

So that established, here’s how to meet someone and get past those initial 15 factors. Firstly, take ten sheets of paper, and write one of these words on each: personality, intelligence, appearance, ambition, chemistry, spirituality, character, creativity, parenting and authenticity. Now write all the qualities you want your ideal match to possess, related to each word.

For example, under ‘ambition’ do you want your match to be very career focused? Or maybe you would rather they were more 9-5? Or would you prefer them to be ambitious about their hobbies? For all ten sheets, this may take a bit of time, so make sure you can give this exercise your complete focus – it’ll be well worth it.

After you’ve completed all ten sheets, re-read them and mark down which ten qualities are the most important to you overall. I’ll bet that of those ten critical qualities, very few can be determined when you first meet someone. This is because they probably come from inside someone, and have little to do with how they look or speak initially. This process is reprogramming your brain, in order that you can look for your soul mate more effectively.

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