You have probably all guessed by now that a blog post is usually the result of some sort of divine inspiration or emotional kick up the backside… so it should be no surprise that my life foundation has experienced a bit of a shake recently, not unlike the Melbourne earthquake of 19 June – we all felt it, got excited for a moment, and then days later it was just a memory. Funnily enough the timing of the physical earthquake actually matched my own goings on. The universe always has a funny way of telling us things…
So I have been contemplating the notion of following your heart or listening to your head when it comes to relationships.
If eight years of dating has taught me anything it is that my gut knows. Knows like we know the sky is blue. It hears what my heart and head are saying but says, “Nu-huh. No way. THIS is what’s going on. The two of you (heart and head) pipe down and listen here y’all.”
It takes me a while to tune into exactly what it is telling me, and it is usually after I’ve seen all the other signs and start putting two and two together to come up with four and stop trying to make it add up to five (I’m a words person, was never any good at numbers. That’s my excuse).
I have met some great guys in recent years. But there were things that my head, heart and ultimately gut were telling me that didn’t match some of the fundamental things that I want, expect and deserve from a long term relationship. And so when the relationship reached a natural make-or-break moment we went our separate ways amicably, coming to the somewhat sad and disappointing realisation that we couldn’t offer each other what the other wants, needs or deserves from said relationship.
I am the sort of girl who leaps into something not just head first but entire mind and body. My sheer excitement at finding someone awesome who ticks most of those mental “things I want in a partner and relationship” boxes has often lead me to being a touch blind when it comes to the minor things, because to be brutally honest when I first meet them there’s a little flicker of hope they are The One.
But by conceding on some of the minor things I’m looking for, I wonder if that means I will be destined to compromise and forgo the fundamental things of a relationship that are important to me and potentially end up “settling” for a great guy but not THE great guy for me if I listen to my head.
Similarly I wonder if that means I have unrealistically high expectations of what a relationship should be and therefore will end up, GASP, alone if I never find it/him if I’m listening to my heart.
Countless Hollywood fairytales have instilled the notion in romantic relationships that “when you know, you know”. But what happens when you don’t know straight away? Should you? Or does it take time? And if it takes time, how much time do you give it until you know? A week? Month? Year? A decade?!? And in the meantime while you’re still waiting to “know”, do you keep going down the relationship garden path that’s paved with meeting each other’s family and friends, taking holidays together, talking about kids and marriage and waiting for the “when you know you know” lightening to strike?
This article by DailyLife.com.au’s Jessica Irvine talks about Dateonomics: You know you’ve found ‘the one’ when you determine that the expected quality of all future matches is lower than the value of your current partner.
Based on this theory, I’ve passed up plenty of great guys and potentially great relationships.
So are we being that honest with ourselves? Or our partners, for that matter? How would they respond to, “Honey, I picked you because even though you’re not perfect you’re the best I’m going to get.” Not so bad if you’re Angelina Jolie, right?
I was asked recently: Is he someone you can’t live without, or is he someone that you’d be simply living with?
I decided sometime ago that the person I choose (eventually) should be someone that I don’t WANT to live without.