Here is a reflection list to help you see how willing you are and what your availability is to partnership. It is not a formula. These are simply questions to reflect on and see what occurs to you about your openness to both dating and partnership.
Are you hopeful about being in a relationship?
Many people I speak to that want to be in a relationship are not hopeful about it. They feel discouraged. They are jaded. They say they want partnership, but they have given up hope. They feel like somehow it is just not in the cards for them.
However, if you want to be in a relationship, but have just lost hope, understand this has got nothing to do with partnership. Losing hope is a state of mind. It is internal. It does not mean anything about your future chances of being in a relationship, but it does cloud your vision to opportunity. Looking at anything including dating through the lens of discouragement distorts your view. It will look hard and impossible. The glass will seem half empty.
If you find yourself discouraged, see if what I say rings true to you. Can you see that the discouragement is a thought loop that is being dwelled on? It is not your natural state. You are innately hopeful and optimistic. If that is not your experience then you know you are identifying with thoughts and beliefs that contradict your natural state.
This is not a problem. Do not try to go after these thoughts or try and change them. Instead, look to understand how your experience is created and look toward who you are. Relax into your own wisdom and knowing of what is true. You are not your thoughts. Look beyond them to see who you are and see what the ripple effect of that is on your discouragement.
Are you open?
You may want to be in a relationship, but are you genuinely open to the experience? This often appears as someone saying, “Yes, I want to be in a relationship, but ….” Whatever comes after the but closes the person off to the experience.
If you have a but, see it for what it is. A concept or an idea that is really saying you don’t want to be in a relationship. It is like me saying I want to eat pizza, but I don’t want to get fat. Is it true that eating pizza will make me fat? Well, it depends. One piece won’t be a problem. Three meals a day of it would be. What comes after the but is usually a generalization that gets in the way of being open-minded about being in a relationship.
You may want it, but you have decided it is not for you. No need to fear. All that is needed is clarity. If you genuinely want to be in a relationship, ignore the buts. You have the inner resources to figure out how to be in relationship with your buts. You just need to see they are made up. None of them are objectively true.
I want to be in a relationship but I’m ….
Travel too much
These are all ideas that you decide are a problem for being in a relationship. There is someone older, fatter, less attractive than you getting married. “Buts” are not a problem. They are only a limitation if you take them seriously. Instead, see if you can see them for what they are concepts — not truth. As such, they don’t need to be taken seriously.
However, do not try to go after them or try and change them. Instead, look to understand how your “but” is created and look toward who you are. Relax into your own wisdom and knowing of what is true. You are not your “buts”. Look beyond them to see who you are and see what the ripple effect of that is on your openness.
Are you too picky?
I was fortunate. I met Angus at 24 and the chemistry was enough. I didn’t think through logically how we would make it work or how good a fit he would be for me. If I did, the differences in our personality would surely have had me say no to our relationship.
Do you try to intellectually figure out if someone is a good fit for you? Do you quickly dismiss potential partners because they don’t meet your checklist? There was a couple that Angus and I worked with who are now married, but they had done a program and created a requirement list for their partner. And of course, the person they loved didn’t check all the boxes on the list. Fortunately, they got rid of the list rather than each other.
Our true nature is love. You are innately loving. Your partner is innately loving. I believe that deep love can be felt in any relationship if you open our heart and mind and share your essence. This does not mean you have to just be with anyone, but it does open up a much larger pool of possibilities.
And in my experience pickiness is usually a way not to be in a relationship. It keeps suitors at bay and this is wisdom. It slows things down so the picky person can feel safe and not out of control. Pickiness is not wrong it is a safety valve that is needed if it looks like your safety can be taken away from you.
Do not try to get rid of your pickiness. See the wisdom in it. Be grateful that you are taking care of yourself in this way, and look toward where your true safety lies. Hint, it is not anywhere in the world of form. Safety is an internal experience of feeling who you are. Having an experience of what is unchanging within you. Look to understand how your experience of not being safe is created and look toward who you are. Relax into your own wisdom and knowing of what is true about your safety. You pickiness is not innate. Look beyond your objections and see who you are. See what the ripple effect of that is on your pickiness.
Do you think a relationship will make you happy?
This is a common misconception. I will be happier when I am in a relationship. A relationship is needed for happiness. I won’t feel lonely anymore when I am in a relationship. Life will be good when I have a partner.
None of these statements can be true because our experience comes from within. As the saying goes, “Happiness is an inside job.” Your natural state is happy. That is the design. It does not mean you will always be happy. As humans, our thoughts come and go and our feelings come and go, but behind all of that is the innate unchanging state of our true nature. It shines through into our experience.
When we notice it we feel the innate peace, joy, love, compassion, empathy that is who we all are.
It can look like when we fall in love that we feel these qualities because of the other person. It is a correlation. I fall in love and now I feel my best self and on top of the world. But that experience is not coming from the other person. It is what happens when we fall out of our conceptual mind and drop into the experience of who we are. That has nothing to do with the other person. It is inside of you.
So why wait for a relationship for that experience? Instead, look to understand how your experience of happiness is created and look toward who you are. Relax into your own wisdom and knowing of what is true about happiness. Your happiness is innate. Instead of looking for another person, look to your Self and see who you are. See what the ripple effect of that is on your overall happiness and see if you still want a partner then.
Are you engaged in exploring partnership?
Abraham Lincoln said actions speak louder than words. Human behavior follows understanding. If you genuinely want a relationship, are your actions lined up with that? Are you following your inner promptings and taking action or are you ignoring them? Are you even listening to your inner promptings?
The mind is neutral. It naturally generates thoughts and ideas. When we point our mind in a direction we will get ideas about the direction we want to go. If I decide I want to rob a bank and am genuinely interested in figuring out how to do that my mind will give me ideas about how to figure it out. That is simply how the mind works. So if you genuinely want to be in a relationship, you will be getting ideas about what to do about that. Are you listening to those ideas? Are you paying attention?
And if you are, are you following through on them or are you dismissing the ideas because you don’t like them? Does following through on the ideas you have make you feel uncomfortable so you wait for an idea that feels more comfortable to come along? If this is the case, you can either experiment with acting on the inclinations and inner promptings that come forward for you or recognize that your comfort is more important to you than a relationship right now and make peace with that. There is nothing wrong with that.
Remember, don’t push yourself to take action if you aren’t ready. Instead, look to understand how your experience of unreadiness is created and look toward who you are. Relax into your own wisdom and knowing of what is true about you. Look to your Self and see who you are. See what the ripple effect of that is on your readiness to listen to your inner promptings and act on them.
Are you afraid of getting hurt?
Many people I speak to who want to be in a relationship are afraid of getting hurt. This is one of the biggest buts out there. I want to have a partner, but I’m afraid of getting hurt. Well, the bad news is you will get hurt in a relationship. I’ll be married for twenty-five years this August and I have been hurt plenty of times. I have also been hurt previously when relationships ended. So the bad news is there is no escaping hurt. Even if you aren’t in a relationship and you want to be in one that probably hurts too. However, there is good news. The good news is getting hurt doesn’t matter. You are resilient. You bounce back. As human beings, we are designed to get over hurt. If we have trouble bouncing back that is just feedback that we are identifying with thoughts that create suffering and don’t allow the innate intelligence in the human psychological design to function as easily.
See if you can recognize your innate resilience. Is there a time in your life when you saw how you bounced back? You want to see that getting hurt is not a problem. It is just part of life. It doesn’t mean you have to seek out getting hurt, but you don’t have to spend time trying to avoid the inevitable when it is not a problem.
I am not saying push yourself beyond your comfort zone. Instead, look to understand how your experience of fear is created and look toward who you are. Relax into your own wisdom and knowing of what is true about you. Look to your Self and see who you are. See what the ripple effect of that is on your fear of getting hurt and your ability to move forward knowing your inner strength and resilience.
You may have noticed the repetition of these sentences throughout this post:
Look to understand how your experience is created and look toward who you are. Relax into your own wisdom and knowing of what is true about you. Look to your Self and see who you are.
I was not trying to pad the post or being lazy. This paragraph bears repetition because it is the answer to everything. You have the wisdom inside of you. Everything you are looking for is within. All that is required is the willingness to look toward your true self and open to the experience of that.
Hope you found this reflection list helpful. Wishing you much fun as you explore partnership!
Rohini Ross is co-founder of “The Rewilders.” Listen to her podcast, with her partner Angus Ross, Rewilding Love. They believe too many good relationships fall apart because couples give up thinking their relationship problems can’t be solved. In this season of the Rewilding Love Podcast, Rohini and Angus help a couple on the brink of divorce due to conflict. Angus and Rohini also co-facilitate private couples' intensives that rewild relationships back to their natural state of love. Rohini is also the author of the ebook Marriage, and she and Angus are co-founders of The 29-Day Rewilding Experience and The Rewilding Community. You can follow Rohini on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. To learn more about her work and subscribe to her blog visit: TheRewilders.org.