Yesterday was the first part in this five-part series focused on getting to the heart of three things that we base our choices in men around; compatibility, type, and common interests, which could actually be at the heart of derailing your relationships and contributing to your difficulty in finding a partner who you can actually forge a relationship with.
In essence, I have previously felt compatibility with Mr Unavailables and assclowns, my ‘type’ was lacking in substance, and while we had some common interests, we certainly didn’t share anything of importance that contributed to the success of the relationship and bound us together in a healthy way.
In this part, I want to talk about ‘soulmates’ and how we have to focus on seeing the wood instead of the trees and being contextual–instead of looking at the inconsequential stuff about compatibility, type, and common interests in isolation, factor them in to the overall picture of reality and ask yourself how much you think the things that matter to you really ‘matter’ and how much they actually benefit you.
At the heart of yesterday’s post was this:
“I’m compatible with someone who loves, respects, trusts, and cares about me, that has values, shares my values, and isn’t trying to fight being a decent person in a decent relationship. It’s more of a turn-on to be around someone with integrity that’s emotionally connected and is truly getting to know me for me and there’s no illusion. I’m compatible with someone who I can lean on emotionally and them me, and I like not living in fear or catering to my fears. I don’t have to (or want to) pretend anymore which means I can get on with being me, enjoying my life, and being happy now.”
Reading some of the comments on part one, I realised that some women still think that finding a mate is like a fairy tale, Mills & Boon novel, romcom film or finding a soulmate, someone who acts, thinks, talks, and is everything that you want them to be and imagined all the time, giving the illusion of a cosmic connection.
What happens if your ‘soulmate’ has an off day, week, month or a few years?
What happens if your ‘soulmate’ is an illusion that doesn’t hold up to scrutiny?
What happens if your ‘soulmate’ can only exist if you have no boundaries and do things on their terms?
Well actually, you don’t need to wonder because if you’ve been involved with a Mr Unavailable or assclown, the likelihood is that part of the reason why you’re still there is because when he briefly exhibited ‘wonderful’ qualities and characteristics, you convinced yourself that you’d found your soulmate because he created ‘feelings’, and then you committed yourself to a voyage trying to get him to be that way again even though he had shown that he was consistently a different person.
The reason why the pursuit of the soulmate concept will come back to bite you in the bum if you’re not careful, is that if you are in pursuit of a ‘feeling’ or have built up your concept of a soulmate based around ideas about compatibility, type, and ‘common’ interests that are not in sync with a healthy relationship, these will create conflicts, misery, plenty of illusions and dalliances with poor partners.
In my book Mr Unavailable and the Fallback Girl, I explained why pursuing a ‘feeling’ is setting you up for a self-fulfilling prophecy.
We say stuff like, It just feels ‘right’ with him/Things need to be ‘right’ before I’m willing to believe that he’s truly ready/It just didn’t feel ‘right’ with him
While you’re off chasing this ‘feeling’, your Mr Unavailable is chasing unattainable perfection which is how your behaviour ends up falling so in sync with theirs – both of you chasing people that don’t actually exist.
Many of us don’t have a picture of a healthy relationship to work off as a frame of reference, and even if we do, even more of us have negative beliefs about ourselves, love, and relationships, so we’re actually pursuing negative feelings.
In the book I ask:
It’s very important that you stop being a short term thinker and look beyond the trees to the wood beyond. This allows you to stop being focused on illusion and start seeing things contextually so that you look at the bigger picture.
Instead of being focused on the feeling right now or just in those moments, you need to acknowledge that you may feel great now, but you feel like crap the rest of the time, the relationship is floundering, and he has done X,Y, Z that clearly demonstrate that something is very wrong.
This is not about killing ‘passion’ or ‘excitement’ and settling for someone who makes watching paint drying seem like an exciting prospect, but come on!
Passion and excitement is not always packaged up in assclowns and Mr Unavailables. In fact, your idea of passion and excitement is actually propelled by fear and drama.
You keep pursuing the feeling and this is what makes you compatible with fickle, often childish men who don’t know their arse from their elbow because pursuing the feeling and this elusive vision of a man that makes you feel in a way that you’ve conjured up in your mind as being what a soulmate would do, has you placing your reliance and interests in insubstantial men who are emotionally disconnected.
They don’t have to back up their words with actions because if they make the right noises, dip in and out of your life, and cater to your fears while creating drama, it ticks the boxes of these ‘feelings’.
You are more words and illusions focused, tied in with a penchant for believing that certain non-important things (we’re coming to those in the subsequent posts) about compatibility, type, and common interests should keep you with these guys.
You’re not really looking at the man, whether he loves, trusts, respects, and cares about you and whether he has both feet in the relationship and whether you actually feel happy in the relationship.
No…you’re looking at what you think you feel, what you’d like to feel, and what you think you will feel, whether he has a good job/likes to cook/cycle/listen to Pavarotti/is tall/short/good at his job/liked by the old lady down the street/kind to animals and kids/good sense of humour/poetic/struggling artist or musician and all that jazz.
Only problem is that he doesn’t show and behave in a way that says he loves, trusts, cares about, and respects you, plus he may be tall with a big dick, great in the sack, a love of cooking, politics, and great intellect with a decent bank balance, and the supposed liking of his peers, but he also has the emotional capacity of a stone, can’t commit, won’t commit, has other women, tells lies, and knows how to be decent to everyone but you.
If the person is emotionally disconnected or behaves like an assclown, how can your ‘souls’ be so connected?
How can you be so compatible with a relationship that is fundamentally incompatible with your happiness and your self-esteem?
Why is someone who so far has done a damn good job of contributing to your unhappiness, so great, that you keep pursuing the same ‘type’ of guy in a different package?
Why is sharing hobbies and interests more important than sharing values and a genuine interest in each other?
There is no point in being focused on certain ideas of what constitutes compatibility, there is no point in pursuing the same ‘type’ over and over again, and there certainly is no point in staking yourself on common interests, if none of these things add up to a you that is personally happy in a positive relationship with a man that wants to be in that relationship with you.
That is the bigger picture or the ‘wood’ instead of the trees.
If you are pursuing a soulmate or the ‘image’ of what you think is the man that’s going to make you happy and ‘complete you’, you may have inadvertently found yourself chasing someone that either doesn’t exist, or chasing men who your illusions about compatibility, type, and common interests have been projected onto.
Either way, it’s time to do a reality check. If it’s not broke, and you’re happy and this works for you in a good way (doubt you’d be reading this) then crack on with what you’re doing, but if what’s becoming patently clear is that what you’re doing and pursuing is not working for you, it’s time to step into reality and get compatible with healthier options, lose the dodgy ‘types’, and ensure that no matter what interests and hobbies you both share, that you both have both feet in the relationship with the common interest being sharing a healthy relationship, with each other’s best interests at heart.
But most importantly, stop being compatible with bullsh*t, illusions, and false promises.
Part Three focuses on compatibility.