There are so many articles that float around the internet about how you should feel about the man or woman you dedicate your heart, time, and energy to – and most of them are pretty profound.
But, what we don’t often acknowledge, is that how you feel about your teammate is not the only thing that matters. It is almost even more important, how you feel about yourself when you’re with them.
You should feel empowered. The right person for you will encourage your dreams and stand beside you as you pursue them. They will believe in your ability to be, do, and accomplish anything you set your mind to. They will be your biggest fan and cheerleader.
You should feel safe. Not just physically safe, but emotionally safe – like you can open up to them and say anything without fear of being judged. This is the only path to true honesty and connection.
You should feel renewed. Like you always want to be laughing or smiling when you think about that silly thing they did the other night, or how excited you get just hearing their name or seeing their picture on your phone.
You should feel cared for. Whether it is small things like putting their hand on your thigh, or holding your hand through a tough experience, the right person should always let you know that they’re by your side when you need them the most (and even when you don’t).
You should feel hopeful. Perhaps you were starting to wonder if the person standing in front you even existed. Maybe you’ve been disappointed, or feel jaded from your past. But, when you are with the right person, they will show you that all of the struggle and heartache were worth it in the long run.
You should feel like yourself. The best, most mature form of love, is the love that allows you to be fully and freely: you. Your silly, goofy, fun, random self. The self that only the mirror (or your pet) sees. The self that dances around in your pajamas or sings karaoke to Journey into your hairbrush.
The right person for you will love and adore all of these things about you, because they fully accept you for who you are at your very core. You will never feel like you have to ‘water yourself down’ to avoid criticism or ridicule, they will make you feel comfortable being completely uncensored.
Only when you find a person you can be fully yourself with, will you be able to deeply connect with them – because you’re finally showing yourself the real you.
Don’t settle for anything less.