Some areas of your settings page require a closer look — here’s why.
In general, you may expect your friendly eHarmony Advice Hosts and Customer Care team members to suggest that you throw all caution to the wind and be as open as possible in all of your settings. However, some areas on your settings page require a closer look. Religion settings fall into this category. (Don’t misunderstand here, we’re not saying be as narrow as possible, either!) Ultimately, it will be valuable to gain discernment concerning which religious identifiers to include and which to leave out so you can open yourself to as many opportunities as possible without compromising your most foundational beliefs.
Spirituality is among the core of all the keys dimensions (and THE core for some). For some, it may require some soul searching and experimentation to determine how open to be and in what ways. Some may feel very confident about what they believe and are intent on including only certain religions and even only certain denominations within one religion – however, they may not be aware of ALL the ways to include matches who share your beliefs and values. You could be inadvertently ruling out the best match for you!
REFERENCE YOUR MUST HAVES AND CAN’T STANDS: “SPIRITUALITY” VS. “SPIRITUAL ACCEPTANCE”
Most eHarmony members recognize the Must Haves and Can’t Stands as a stage in the Guided Communication process. We encourage members to consider widening settings in areas that may just be preferences or ideals. Not so when it comes to settings that represent your Must Haves and Can’t Stands. They are your pillars that keep you focused on making wise choices, and they are limited to only 10 Must Haves and 10 Can’t Stands. They help keep you from becoming too picky or too inclined to get involved with inappropriate matches. Before you even begin communicating with matches, you may want to think through your Must Haves and Can’t Stands, because they may play an important part in how you select your Match Settings.
You can find the definition of the Must Haves “Spirituality” and Spiritual Acceptance” under the My Profiles tab, under the Values link. In a nutshell, if you select “Spirituality” as a Must Have, you are saying that you require a potential partner to share your faith and belief. If you choose “Spiritual Acceptance,” you require a potential partner to accept your beliefs although they may differ.
If you are a very devoted, practicing member of a religion, you may want to consider how important it is to you to get a match who practices the same faith. Or, you may be perfectly content with a partner who has the same level of spirituality, but not the same religion, as long as they accept and respect your beliefs and practices. Is “Spirituality” more important to you, or “Spiritual Acceptance?” The desire to raise children a certain way may influence which Must Have is appropriate, for example. Or, perhaps the tenants of your faith advise joining with a partner who believes as you do.
For those who are more casually practicing the faith they identify with, and for those who are “Spiritual, but not religious” or “Neither religious nor spiritual,” you may want to ask yourself if you would you be open to someone who is very involved in a particular faith which may include customs and practices with which you are not familiar. How much are you willing to learn or become involved in your partner’s faith? Keep in mind that many religious affiliations involve daily practices and holiday customs and ceremonies – consider what this could mean for you as a couple or family.
THINKING THROUGH THE PRE-WRITTEN MUST HAVES AND CAN’T STANDS
Although eHarmony’s lists of Must Haves and Can’t Stands are already worded, if you are looking for long term happiness in a relationship, it’s not a bad idea to invest some time reviewing them, revising your selections and even rewriting them so you know have a clear idea in your own mind what they mean to you. Not only may you have a better idea of how to select your Religion settings and other match settings, you may be able to articulate these areas better to your matches – and know with which matches to pursue communication.