what’s your definition of the perfect relationship?

I’ve been thinking about this a bit. In part to understand what I’m seeking. In part to understand my friends’ relationships…some of which I don’t fully…get.

photographer javier lovera what's your definition of the perfect relationship?
Pic by Javier Lovera

I used to believe there was a One.

I now believe arranged marriages can often produce better relationships than when we’re left to our devices. We create our love, once we decide. For a VERY interesting discussion of this see Sheena Iyengar’s book The Art of Choosing (she compares different relationships and finds the arranged ones are far happier 20 years down the track. It’s a terrific read.) I’ve put her TED.com talk below…as a sideline.

So the point is…we choose love. We choose to make the relationship work.

I used to believe relating was about facing each other and seeing each other in each other’s eyes.

I now believe relating is about travelling side by side, looking in the same direction. Every now and then we look across at each other and prod each other on with a kind smile.

I used to believe we found our match.

I now believe our partner holds a mirror up to us and our deepest fears…and abilities. We see ourselves in their behaviour and we rise to it and grow…and do the same to them. And thus we move forward. When the mirror you hold is no longer appropriate to the other, they slip away. This is fine.

I also came upon this on Daily OM… sage and comforting indeed:

Before we embark upon the journey of finding the relationship that is right for us, we may want to take the opportunity to refine our concept of who we are and our ideas of what we want from life. That way, we are clearer on the kind of person we want to attract into our lives. Part of the journey of finding a mate is learning how to become our own mate.

We are fortunate to live in a time when relationships can unfold at a pace that is right for us and take unique forms. Friendship, dating, open relationships, long term relationships, long distance relationships, or committed relationships ˜ we are free to choose the kind of relationships that we want. If you want to be in relationship, but haven‚t found the right one for you, remember that the universe works in perfect order and, therefore, right now your life is unfolding exactly as it is meant to be. Maybe all this time has been part of your preparation period for meeting your intended partner. Even the relationships in our lives that haven‚t worked out as we had hoped serve us by teaching us to make better choices in our next relationships.

Finding the relationship we want can come early or later in life. It may even happen again and again in one lifetime. There is no right or wrong for how to find a relationship nor is there a timeline that you have to follow. Follow your heart, listen to your inner voice, continue to become your own soul mate, and stay open to love. The journey of finding the right relationship begins with being in right relationship with yourself.

What’s your definition of relating and relationships? Everyone has one! And mostly I wrote this post so I can hear others’!

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