3 Common Mistakes That Could Keep You From Finding Your Spouse
These three false beliefs and expectations will steal from any relationship and may cause you to miss a potential marriage relationship. How are you doing in these areas?
1. Thinking Emotions Are Truth
We all want to feel butterflies and excitement about our potential spouse. Heightened feelings of attraction and excitement are a beautiful part of a relationship that enriches the experience of love. Yet all too commonly we reduce love and the truth about the relationship to an emotional feeling. When we ask ourselves questions like – Is this person “The One?” Do they make me happy? Are they exciting enough? Are they attractive enough? – we often fall into the trap of looking to our emotions for the answer. Emotions are important indicators that we need to pay attention to, but if we let them be in the “driver’s seat,” we will be as indecisive and fickle as our emotional state, which can lead us to potentially make poor conclusions and decisions about the relationship.
Here’s an example: If my wife does something that hurts my feelings, in a split second I can feel hurt and offended. If this happens, I obviously won’t feel as attracted to her in that moment, resulting in instinctively wanting to pull away from her. If I choose to let my emotions drive me in this situation, I’ll end up disconnecting from the woman I love, and will most likely make some internal accusation toward her like, “See, she isn’t caring. I can’t trust her to meet my needs,” or “I have to guard myself from my wife. I can’t fully let her in.” None of these statements are true in the slightest about my wife, but if I choose to blindly trust what I feel in those moments, I’ll end up interacting with her in ways that will result in losing connection and intimacy between her and I.
As a relationship deepens with another person, it will almost alway bring up our own personal fears, insecurities, and areas we need growth in. This usually does not feel good emotionally and if we aren’t careful, we can attribute these negative emotions as an indicator of the overall health of the relationship.
Since emotions are fickle and can change at the drop of a hat, we need to become skilled at deciphering which emotions are actually attached to the relationship and which ones are there because of momentary discomforts that can simply be worked through. Don’t let unrealistic expectations of always needing an emotional high in the relationship cause you to miss out on the potential opportunity for a connected, healthy relationship.
2. Mistaking Infatuation for Love
Along with the many different kinds of love, there are many other feelings that can masquerade as love – one of these feelings is infatuation. Infatuation is when someone makes us feel so good, we love how they are making us feel. The problem with this lies in the fact that we love the feeling more so than the person. When we reduce love to an emotional response like infatuation, it becomes self-centered: “If you don’t make me feel ‘X,’ then we aren’t in love.”
True love is wanting the best for someone else. It isn’t focusing on what you can get but rather what you can give. It’s not only about if they are the right person for you but if you are the right person for them. How do you know if you truly love them? Start with asking yourself these questions:
- Can you see and appreciate the intricacies of who they are?
- Can you feel God’s genuine love and appreciation for them even when there is conflict and they aren’t perfect – even when they aren’t making you feel like a million bucks?
True love is strong enough to choose regardless of temporary emotional responses.
When you are trying to find out if the person you’re in relationship with is “The One,” don’t only ask yourself if they are the right fit for you, but ask yourself if you are the right fit for them. Don’t only focus on how they make you feel, because as mentioned before, our emotions are fickle and numerous things can affect them. Focus on whether or not you can fully love them and choose them as they truly are. If you can, then you have an incredible foundation for a great relationship and you simply have to discover if they fully choose you and love you back. If you can’t fully love and choose them just as they are, then you aren’t the right fit for them – even if they make you feel amazing.
3. Seeking Perfection Instead of Trust
Are you waiting for things to feel perfect and be conflict-free in the relationship? If so, I have bad news for you – you may be waiting an extremely long time for the “right one”. Don’t get stuck in the never-ending search for perfection. There’s many that tend to seek perfection before feeling comfortable truly committing to someone. I understand; covenant can be scary. It is an extremely weighty choice and it should be made with careful thought and consideration. But seeking perfection is an attempt to unhealthily remove our own personal fears of making the wrong decision, which puts an unfair expectation on the relationship and our potential spouse. Seeking perfection in a relationship can end up leading you away from a potentially great mate.
Waiting until there are no “bumps” in your relationship will never happen, no matter who you choose to be with. Conflict is a normal, healthy part of two people merging their lives together. So instead of trying to avoid it, choose to focus on whether or not you have a solid foundation of trust to build upon, especially during times where conflict arises. Being able to trust your partner in the midst of conflict is so much more valuable and necessary than seeking the fiction of a frictionless relationship.
How do you know if there is trust in the relationship? You may want to ask yourself questions like:
- Does the person you’re in relationship with have integrity and honesty?
- Do their actions and behavior consistently line up with their words?
- Are you both willing to grow and work on things in the relationship even when it’s not easy?
The answers to these questions are much better indicators of whether or not a relationship will work out long-term rather than how much initial conflict there is in the first place.
Most people greatly desire finding that special someone to spend the rest of their life with. If you are in this category, don’t miss out on potentially great mates because of misguided beliefs or perspectives. Challenge yourself in these areas and experience the deeper intimacy and relationship that awaits you.
by Brendon Byrne