To all the friends & family going through confusing change
[Part of a short Instagram series]
1) 💍💐 I recently started asking every engaged couple how they met, how they felt, how they knew, and what kind of advice they have for someone figuring out relationships. And one of the biggest things that stuck out to me was what a groom said to compliment his fiancé's words.
His fiancé said what most people say, which was "You'll find her when you stop looking and when you least expect it". And that's hard to argue when everyone of all age groups say that.
But what he said was "Yes, that'll probably happen… but with most other successful happenings in life, you'll be prepared for it. Like the same way you do well on a test, or do well in business. You'll be internally prepared as an individual. I thought I was always prepared to be in a relationship, but it was actually when I was like 'No. NOW I know I'm really ready' when I finally met her. And I don't want to turn this into an esoteric answer, but it happens when you're confident, as an individual, to be in a relationship. A relationship you know you want. So you may not be explicitly looking when you find her, but you would have already been mentally/physically/financially ready for it when it happens."
In other words, yes, you're more likely to find them when you're not looking – but only because you are, and you have been, focused on bettering yourself. As an individual. And as someone for them.
2) 👠👰🏼 And it's always tough trying to know when you're actually ready for something like this. Something that's supposed to be amazing. Something that everyone talks about but doesn't understand. Finding, being in, and grasping love; it's different for everyone. And I remember one of the mother's of a couple mentioning something on that topic… which comes to mind from time to time.
She said something like "Meet as many people as you can. Not necessarily in a romantic sense, but getting a sense of how people are in character. And realizing what types of people fit who you are. Everyone's different. Figure out what you like and dislike about different people, and then gauge who you'd like to see more often."
Do you like the way she talks? Do you like how he treats you? Are they a good time? Receiving and accepting affection is different for everyone. And it's funny how it was a mother who brought this up, because the family is usually what sets the baseline of love for everyone else. And once you really do have a strong understanding of what does/doesn't fit, I think that's a step closer to being 'ready'.
3) 🏰💕 But even with knowing what you do/don't like, there's always the question of our wants meeting reality. Does the reality we live in meet your 'perfection'? Is there truly a 'perfect' individual that mimics exactly what you want? Almost never. Just because you say you want someone in a certain way doesn't mean the world is going to abide by that and hand it over. Your wants in a relationship may become reality in the future, but you have to acknowledge your surroundings right now and adjust.
I rewatched 500 Days of Summer (and Don Jon lol) over the weekend again, and every time I see it, there's always something new to think about in our world. And I think the biggest message was realizing a distorted outlook on life and managing expectations. Like in business/school/relationships, everything is a never-ending cycle towards a shared outcome. Being transparent and open about what you like and dislike should always be the goal, but also checking yourself back into what's actually attainable. And one of my recent grooms commented on what life is like post-wedding:
He said something along the lines of, "It doesn't magically become perfect. Marriage will always be a work in progress. There's a lot of compromise and trying to make the best for the both of us. That's the reality of it. But when she can understand when I can't/need to do things that are kind of inconvenient, that's a huge thing. And the same goes for the other way around. It's not always the perfect situation, but it's real."
Check your wants and yourself with reality. You can't build on a distorted foundation.