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Love As a Test vs. Love as a Journey

Posted Sep 22 2008 10:28am

guy and girl with heart How do you date and find love? Do you pace your relationships, interacting, paying attention to your inner compass, making observations? Or do you date as if it were a test, and the other person passes or fails (in your eyes)? If they pass, you go forward; if they fail, you stop.

If you’ve spent any time at all on my blog and read my books, you’ve noticed that I advocate paying close attention to others’ behavior over time to reveal one of the most important ingredients for a healthy relationship - good character. But this strategy is only effective to the degree that you keep your heart dialed in.

If you date with the expecation that another person’s behavior will line up perfectly with what you are looking for, you may overlook the nuances that tell you that a person’s heart is in the right place. For instance, a guy may call in advance to ask you out, send you flowers, and take you out to nice restaurants. But if you pay attention, you may find that he is in seduction mode, playing out a strategy that he’s used successfully in the past to get women in bed. In this case, it’s the right behavior, but the wrong emotions and the wrong intention.

Then there’s the guy who asks you out for an ice cream date. Maybe he’s not terribly sophisticated; maybe he can’t afford a five star restaurant. But if you pay attention, you discover that his heart is in the right place, his intentions are honorable, and he’s courting you, not seducing you. Right feelings, right intentions.

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