Singlehood, Valentine’s Day and the Good Life

by eHarmony Staff

Singlehood, Valentine's Day and the Good Life

There’s a change in the way single Americans are looking at life. The old ideas about society’s expectations are giving way to a new mindset, a new idea about one of life’s most important decisions—finding a soul mate.

The "needing" a mate to survive has transformed into "wanting" a soul mate to create a brilliant, loving relationship. The idea that you can fix a mate once you’re married and the relationship is entrenched is fading as more people insist on choosing emotionally healthy marriage candidates. And perhaps most importantly, singles are looking for mates who are similar to them in the ways that really matter most for long term happiness.

Many singles dread Valentine’s Day. They see it as a reminder that they don’t have a special person sharing their life. They see all the romantic celebration around them and feel left out and sad.

But this year, if you are single, we ask you to celebrate Valentine’s Day in a way that will turn your thinking upside down. You are going to use Valentine’s Day for your own purposes to celebrate the changes you’re making in your search for someone special.

You’re Celebrating Your Decision to Select with Care

Most relationships are born based on 4 or 5 compatible traits (usually appearance, status, personality and chemistry). Based on eHarmony’s research, there are 29 critical dimensions in which most happy and successful couples enjoy great similarity. Once you start to learn about these traits your mate selection process changes forever.

We firmly believe and our clinical research has shown that individuals who are well matched in these 29 areas have more enjoyable marriages. They share so much similarity that the mechanics of living together and loving each other just work well.

By celebrating this change in your thinking you’re virtually guaranteeing that you will never end up in a marriage where the differences between you and your spouse tear the relationship to pieces.

You’re Celebrating your Commitment to Emotional Health

Helping persons find a suitable marriage partner is an extremely complex endeavor, but in the center of all this complexity there is one simple and unchangeable truth – a great marriage is built by two emotional healthy individuals.

You may wonder how a person goes about becoming more emotionally healthy. Well, after studying couples for 35 years, we’ve been able to draw a strong connection between emotional health and great decision making. In fact, we believe that emotional health can practically be defined as a person’s ability to make great decisions from moment to moment.

Let us repeat that: If you can make great decisions from moment to moment that balance a variety of concerns and input, you are enjoying emotional health.

The most important key to making great decision is making sure that YOU are the only person in your “control booth.” If you will commit this Valentine’s Day to this concept of emotional health, and live each day with an insistence on making your own decisions, you will be laying the groundwork for a loving healthy marriage somewhere down the road.

You’re Celebrating your Commitment to In-Depth Knowledge Before you Become Emotionally Involved

As human beings we are, in some ways, at the mercy of our biology. Ending a relationship, even with someone that we know is wrong for us, can be heart-wrenchingly difficult once we become emotionally connected. This quicksand effect has created mountains of misery for many well-meaning couples.

One of the greatest gifts you can give yourself is a commitment to get to know someone well before becoming emotionally attached. By committing this Valentine’s Day to approach every date with your ears wide open and your objectivity in place, you can learn everything you need to know about a potential partner before you lose your heart to them.

You’re Celebrating your Decision to Hold out for your Soul Mate

Many people decide that good enough is good enough. They decide that being alone is too much pain and settle for the "next" person instead of the "right" person. At eHarmony we believe in the power of your Soul Mate, and we always encourage people to hold out for that one special person and not settle for less.

This Valentine’s Day we want you to celebrate your refusal to settle. We want you to make a list of your top ten must have traits and your top ten can’t stand traits. Don’t be surprised when you discover how difficult this list is to create. You may have 50 items you must have in a mate, but if you’ll commit to a top 10 list, you will have given your search focus and created a reasonable expectation.

Once they are completed these two lists are absolute. This Valentine’s Day you are celebrating the power of your must haves and can’t stands. From this day forward you will refuse to even consider a partner who does fulfill both lists. This is the gold standard and you will never accept less. Remember, a bad marriage is a million times worse than no marriage at all.

So, on February 14th call some friends, order a pizza, go out on the town, do something special and celebrate the peace of mind you have from knowing that you are changing the way you search for a soul mate. Celebrate, knowing that when you do meet that soul mate, you’ll be ready to create a brilliant relationship that will last the rest of your life.

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