Who Is Ms.~ Mr. Right Anyway?

Of course you want to fall in love; But, like many singles -- you despair of finding that (right one). You may have some idea of your perfect man or woman -- he should be good-looking, rich, and powerful; She should be beautiful, sexy -- And smart.

One of my good buddies who's a single guy and real estate investor -- Says (in restate you look for three things? Location, location, location). But, in the dating market -- a lot of women look for three things: Cash, cash, cash. In a culture where the free love of the 1970s has emerged into high commercialism, love has been reduced to the (BBD) -- meaning, Bigger Better Deal. But when it comes down to it -- the right person might just be the postman or the person who seemed quite plain at first; But who turns out to love sports, be a terrific cook or the best lover you ever had.

Mystery of Attraction:

In many ways attraction is a mystery; But there are some guidelines to help you understand the process. First, I'd like to introduce you to my concept of (the Mirror Law of Attraction). According to this principle we attract and are attracted to those people who have something we desire or wish to defy. For example: People who have commitment problems (but deny it) frequently attract unavailable types who wear their noncommittal status like a badge -- or people who are insecure about their looks are often compelled to date the most attractive people they can find.

we are also all equipped with a (love antennae) that help us tune into certain types of people. But beware -- your love antennae may be improperly programmed, leaving you to make choices that end up making you unhappy.

Your love antennae gets tuned by your particular (love criteria) -- things you think you must have in a partner. But on closer examination -- those qualities may not be essential --And you may have to change your criteria to find someone more suitable. Along those lines, many of us also keep an (eligibility score) in which we asses our (market) worth -- and that of potential mates. Assess each quality from 0 (=Zero) to 10 (=Hero).

For example: If you rate yourself a '9' in looks, but a '4' in intelligence -- you might pick someone who ranks a '4' in attractiveness, but a '9' in smarts; So your scores even out to a similar number. If you feel you have a quality covered -- you may find yourself going after someone who offers something that you don't quite have.

What Is Chemistry, and Does It Exist?

You spot him across a crowded room and you just know he's the one. It's the dream of a lifetime. You feel that chemistry -- the thrill of electricity through your body. Your heart pounds -- and you feel that the two of you are meant to be together. Book, online ebooks, songs, movies are replete with these scenarios. These stories fuel hope -- and we despair when it doesn't happen to us.

But just what is chemistry? Love, attraction or lust; Call it what you will (but it does trigger physiological reactions). In a heightened state of arousal our bodies release a number of hormones and chemicals. One of these adrenaline triggers the (flight or flight response) that explains symptoms such as sweaty palms, palpitations and weak knees -- similar to anxiety symptoms triggered by a final exam or the near miss of a traffic accident. Other chemicals include oxytocin (the cuddle chemical), phenylethylamine (the natural high chemical) -- and endorphines (the pleasure chemical).

The feeling of being magnetically attracted to someone may also have to do with the bioelectric fields that surround our bodies. A cycle is created; When we are aroused -- our bodies release chemicals which in turn stimulate the smooth muscles and sensitize the nerve endings. This makes us even more sensitive to pleasure and more emotionally responsive. As you interpet your body signals to mean you are (in love) your enthusiasm escalates.

Making Your Love Deal:

Picking a mate is like the art of the deal. There are qualities you definitely want in a mate -- (deal points): Conditions that you won't accept or live with under any circumstances! (Deal breakers): Points you are willing to negotiate.

List the qualities you want in a mate. While I've only made room for 5 -- you can list more if you wish too.

1. _______________________________________

2. _______________________________________

3. _______________________________________

4. _______________________________________

5. _______________________________________

Now, go back over your list and circle the qualities that are non-negotiable -- the real deal breaker. Put a question mark next to the ones that are negotiable -- things you are willing to compromise on or could learn to live with or without. Next, put an 'X' next to the points that continually cause you trouble in relationships -- these may be things you should consider dropping from your list or giving up on when looking for a mate.


Love Scripts:

Chemistry and deal points are just part of the reason we choose the people we do. We also use a (love script); This is a fantasy that tells us how we'd like our love lives to go. Think of it as a movie of your love life -- and you are casting a partner for the leading role. Our love scripts are based on our emotional needs, experiences, beliefs and desires.

Our love scripts often lead us to people who offer us some measure of emotional protection. For example: One of my good buddies whos in video editing industry -- told me that he had a thing for women over 200 pounds; He said "If they're not fat..."I won't date them". Terribly insecure about his own underdeveloped body -- he convinced himself such full figured women would never reject him; So he felt safe. To find out why you are attracted to a particular trait -- (ask yourself this) what meaning does this have for me? How does being with a person like that make me feel safe, protected, important and powerful?.

of course, our early childhood experiences also play a role in why we pick certain partners. For example; When I dug a little deeper into my friend past and the sources of his attraction for large women -- I learned he had a frail mother who never hugged him. This helped explain his distaste for slim framed women whom he expected would be as cold. His very overweight aunt came to visit to their home frequently -- and her arms around him were his only fond memory of nurturing -- making him pleasantly predisposed to other women like her.

Condition That Enhance Attraction:

In one study, men who had exercised vigorously found a pretty woman even more appealing than those who had exercised for only 25 seconds. In another study, men coming off a narrow - swaying footbridge 230 feet above the rocks - asked a female computer software code expert out on a date more often than men walking across a low concrete span. The explanation: Arousal from fear -- pounding heart, pumping blood -- can be interpreted as excitement -- making the men more susceptible to attraction.

Experiencing grief or loss stimulates a desire to reaffirm life -- bringing people together in the fact of tragedy. Sometimes these relationships flower beautifully. For example: Beth lost her boyfriend to cancer -- but at a memorial service, she met David. Although an unlikely pair (she was a ceo for a computer company in Chicago) and (he owned a chain of grocery stores in Iowa); They bonded with memories of their cherished friend. Dispite their differences -- they discovered emotional similarities -- and by transcending their shared pain, found a new love that was deep and lasting.

Many people have had the experience of falling for a co-worker or fellow casr member in a play -- only to have the relationship fall apart at the end of the project. Mutual endeavors are very erotic; But don't guarantee lasting love. If you fall for someone during an intense project at work or while you are both performing in a community play -- don't be surprised if the relationship fizzles after the common bond dissipates.

Opposites Attract:

You know the old saying, "Opposites Attract" -- and we have all seen this adage in action. But over time, differences that were once appreciated can become sources of irritation. For example: A woman called a local radio station to say (that her boyfriend loves jazz music and live blues). At first she was captivated by this because she's more the alternative music, rock-n-roll type. But the novelty was beginning to wear thin. If she and her boyfriend want to keep the relationship going -- they both have to learn to accommodate their differences.

At this point, I suggest that couples keep in mind the three "A's": Acceptance, Appreciation, and Adjustment. For example: Mike, he's a truck driver and his wife a bank manager -- are a prime example of how opposites attract and make a wonderful match. They seem to have put the three "A's" to work; She loves the (Blues) -- he loves country music; He's into basketball -- and she loves football. Joking about these differences helps them appreciate each other all the more. Get it!


Common Dating Myths:

When you become depressed about dating -- it might be because your mind is telling you discouraging thoughts. Many of these are blatantly unture; Here are some common misconceptions -- And the truth about them:

Myth: There is no one for you. All the good ones are taken.

Reality: Negative thoughts create negative outcomes; Positive thoughts allow positive realities. Remember, the world is full of possibilities. There is a cover for every cooking pot. Even the gloomy forecast years ago that single women over 35 had as much a chance of finding a man as being attacked by a terrorist was subsequently proved misleading. Instead of worrying about your chances -- look at dating as a series of separate events; All that matters is what happens to you. Un the movie 'Dumb and Dumber' Jim Carrey falls hard for Lauren Holly -- and asks god what his chances are? 1 in a million, is the answer. Carrey then cheers -- 'I have a chance!' Even if it's true that you have a 1 in 292.2 million chance of winning the 'Mega Million Lottery' jackpot -- someone has to win it -- And it could be you!!

You always have a chance. Be encourage, like one single guy who drinks at a local sports bar -- who said (I'm not attractive, he admitted, and I fell for this gorgeous girl and thought she'd never look at me twice; But, I won her heart. We started out as friends and we got to talking. She told me she had been abused when she was younger -- and that I made her laugh. Now she says she never felt as comfortable with anyone in her life).

Rather than looking for (the one) -- be open to dating around. Make the most of every date -- not in terms of success or failure or ridden with expectations or desperation; But as an adventure, a way of enjoying and learning about yourself and others. Beat any man or woman shortage odds (instead of insisting on a certain height, salary, or status -- be open to possibities of who might be good for you.

For example; consider white collar/blue collar unions: Princess Stephanie of Monaco had 2 children by her bodyguard before she married him. Elizabeth Taylor married carpenter Larry Fortensky. Roseanne divorced her producer husband Tom Arnold to marry chauffeur/bodyguard. More secure women today consider repairmen, chauffeurs -- And bodyguards -- not fearing (marrying down) but welcoming the man's love and support.

Aslo consider May, December and December, May age gap relationships. Research shows the ideal relationship was once considered to be the man being 3 1/2 years older than the woman -- (anthropolgically younger fertile females were desirable to propagate the species). But, today's trend of older women with younger men -- (if you didn't know, was made popular by 'Cher', who in her forties dated twenty something lovers) can be a successful coupling. The younger man has grown up respecting independent mature women and is more comfortale with equality than many older men. Lots of guys, answer proudly to losing their virginity to the Mrs. Robinson (from the movie 'The Graduate', in which Dustin Hoffman had an affair with a woman old enough to be his mother) -- revering the sexually confident (teacher).

Differences in culture, race and religion can seem insurmountable. D.J. is a black man and attracted to a asian girl. Bill girlfriend is Lutheran, but he's jewish. Parents and friends warn and object -- causing these couples to argue. Get past your own and society prejudices. Be prepared for lifestyle decisions. Understand the reason for the attraction -- (for the person or what that person can do for you) protect, nurture, provide?

I maintain that any difference can be overcome if you truly appreciate each other and work out major lifestyle decisions about kids, careers, family visits, etc. If other's objections get to you too much -- they are triggering your own hesitations or doubts that you should examine. Are you worried that your attraction is a rebellion, an escape or a challenge? Declare a moratorium on the worries and spend time strengthening your relationship -- so it can withstand objections.

Myth: There is only one person right for you.

Reality: There are many fish in the sea. There is no one and only Mr. or Ms. Right -- and no perfect person -- only real people with real imperfections. It's totally true that finding love menas being open to many possibities and making compromises.

Myth: It's impossible to find someone to love.

Reality: Love can come in unexpected places and times -- and in unexpected partners. For example: Sonny was morose in her search. She told all her friends to be on the lookout -- went to all the right parties -- And joined all kinds of clubs; But seemingly to no avail. Finally, while visiting her sister in another state -- she went to a museuim exhibit. As she stood in front of a painting -- a man with a small child asked her what she thought of the work. As she wandered to the next painting -- and the next -- he seemed to follow her. Finally, he asked her to join him for lunch. They've been painting the town together ever since.

Myth: Finding the right person is simply a matter of (fate) -- being in the place at the right time.

Reality: As Sonny's story shows -- fate and timing are important; But you have to be open, receptive and ready.

You may not be able to ensure that any one activity or place will manifest love -- in fact you should not have expectations -- but when you are open to possibilities, feeling good about yourself -- and going about your life with joy -- more people are bound to be drawn to you.

Myth: All the (good ones) are taken. There are no good men or women left.

Reality: Even if many (good ones) are taken -- it only takes one. You may even know that good person now and just need to open your eyes.

Nice Guys Don't Have to Finish Last:

The lament of the nice guy is a common one that I hear a lot when speaking with single men; Like, Bobby, who drinks at his favorite sports bar (who echoes the troubled refrain of many guys) -- "Why is that girls stay with guys who treat them poorly, but nice guys get stepped on?". Bobby is right! Many women are attracted to bad guys. Most single women stated (I like exciting guys -- I know they're jerks and I'd like to like another guy I know who's sweet; But I can't help it -- the rat just turn me on). Some women like men in this trap of being torn between two loves -- one nice and one exciting -- are addicted to a challenge. They need to prove they are desirable. They can only escape this trap when they feel secure within themselves -- And find their own life exciting.

Like Bobby, Jimmy is similary befuddled; "I spared no expense romancing this girl for 2 weeks -- opening doors for her, taking her horseback riding, buying her gifts. But she said I was too nice and left me for some guy who acts tough and treats her rough. What's wrong with me?

What's wrong with Jimmy -- is that he opened his bank account and his heart too fast. Showering someone with gifts does not ensure her approval. But before he jumps to conclusions that being nice isn't worth it -- Jimmy has to examine what else he might be doing wrong; Such as, choosing a woman who is unavailable and unattainable -- who only wants a challenge in a man -- and who may have such low self-esteem that she can't let herself be loved.

Following my (mirror law of attraction) if you're always attracted to unavailable, unattainable dates -- look at why you need to have partners who don't appreciate you. It might be to prove that you're okay; Because of low self-esteem; If so, value yourself as you are or because you need to prove that all people are hard to please (look at your history and see why you resent men or women) -- or because you are really afraid of commitment -- so you pick partners who would never want to settle down either.

'Nice' used to be the kiss of death -- implying doormat, need or wimp. But the new nice male or female can be good looking and exciting. The on thing the nice guy or gal may lack is mystery or elusiveness -- in it's place is sensitivity, caring, sincerity and reliability.

Nice people are there for you in an emergency -- give even more than they take -- and listen when you need to talk. They're your best friend -- the ones you call to complain about all the others who treat you poorly. They love you for you. They remember your birthday. They may not show up like fireworks -- but they'll warm your heart by the fire.

I'm often asked, (where do I go to meet someone nice?). The nice guy or gal often shows up as somebody's good friend. So look right under your nose. Ask friends, relatives and co-workers to introduce you to their best friends. The nice guy may be the one who lets you out of the elevator first in your office building or the one who offers you a seat on the bus. The nice gal's the one with the smiling face at your coffee shop. Once you've detemined that (nice) is the one quality you won't compromise on -- your (love anttenae) will be attuned to that type of person and he or she will show up in your life.

The Good Friend Test: 

I always marvel at how people accept things from lovers that they would never accept from friends. One woman says; My boyfriend cheats on me, he lies, he always gorget to call me -- but I still love him.

Before yo set out to find your ideal date -- think about what friendship means to you. After all, you want your lover to be your friend -- don't you?. List the things that are important in a friend; Such as, steadfastness, honesty, reliability -- And then consider whether your current or past lovers have these qualities. If anything you can be a little more lenient with friends; But should compromise less when it comes to a love partner -- where you have more to invest and more to gain or lose.

Expecting Change:

Part of love is support each other to become your best. But if you choose partners with the expectation of changing them -- you're courting serious disappointment. For example: A woman named Teresa, says, (I've been seeing Jack for 6 years. He's really smart -- but he's lazy. He's been working on his dissertation for years and just can't finish it. I keep encouraging him because I know he's talented -- but now I feel like I'm just pushing him. Latlely he's said that he's not interested in a career -- that he'd rather do something simple. I'm afraid he'll never make anything of himself).

While it is wonderful to be a partner's cheerleader and inspiration -- if you both have decidedly different goals -- it might be time to either accept your mate or cut your losses. Eventually, Teresa decided she could never be happy being a constant nag -- nor could she be happy with someone who wasn't as ambitious as she was; So she and Jack parted ways.

Compatibility Test:

Lets end this article with a simple compatibility test that helps you gauge -- if a relationship is going to work. If you're not seeing someone right now -- remember to come back to this test when you start dating. Compatibility is essential, if a relationship is going to work. Ask yourself these questions:

A.) Do the two of you have similar values? Research shows that shared values are crucial in keeping a relationship together.

B.) Can you resolve your differences? Every couple has arguments -- but can you resolve them, respecting one another's opinions and needs? If you argue more often than you agree -- you're in trouble.

C.) Do you have similar needs for closeness or separateness? If one person wants to be inseparable while the other feels suffocated with too much togetherness -- you're in trouble.

D.) Do you have similar sex drives? Sex doesn't have to be on top of the list for every couple (but, it does has to be on their somewhere). In most, healthy, happy relationships -- partners have similar feelings about sex.

E.) Do you have similar lifestyles and goals? Some differences can be worked out (he's an early riser, while she comes alive late at night); But others can tear couples apart (she wants kids, he doesn't).

A 'No' answer to any one of these questions could spell trouble. Since each one of these can derermine whether your relationship is happy and lasting -- comcentrate on how you may differ and make efforts to apply the three 'A's' (Acceptance, Appreciation and Adjustment).

Before jumping to conclusions about any relationshio -- make sure you observe your partner over time. Follow my 3 month observation period guidelines; This is the minimum amount of time necessary to truly assess someone's character -- Trustworthiness, Security, Reliability and Kindness. Falling too fast leads to trouble -- so take things slow. You don't want to cast someone into your love script without really knowing that person.

A Few Tips to Remember: 

1. Treat daing as an adventure.

2. You always have a chance. 

3. Ultimately, the best partner is someone who is secure and who really cares about you.



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