How could I have forgotten my favorite one of all!? This one isn’t so much advice as it is people asking the wrong question, to which people generally provide the wrong answer.
I’m Looking for my Soul-Mate/Future Spouse/Etc…
Woah, put on the brakes there. Call me wrong, stupid, ignorant, inexperienced, or whatever you want, but I’m like 99.999% (good server uptime) sure this is the wrongest attitude to take. In my opinion, if you go into relationships with this mindset, you’re going to come off as pushy/desperate at the very best, and horribly stupid at worst. An analogy off the top of my head would be say you get into building custom cars. You’re good mechanically, but you’ve never built a car before. Do you start off saying “oh boy, I’m going to build this first car, it’s going to have a Ferrari-style engine, F1 inspired suspension, all wheel drive…”? No, you don’t, because that’s insane. You build a prototype. The prototype might be a piece of shit, but you built it, and you learned from it. So you try again, and again, and again. And even when you finally have something close to your perfect dream car, it’s still probably not quite right, so you work on it. Adjust this panel, move that air filter, tweak the suspension. The point is, the dream car is the end goal, but you don’t start out there, you make the journey there, and you learn along the way. That’s why I think the “looking for marriage/soul-mate” is just a horrible mindset to have. Even worse in this case, because we’re talking about two people, not cars. Meet some people, see where it goes, learn about yourself and them. That’s the right way to think about it. If you’re too focused on the dream car, you might skip over the journey parts and fail to realize that “hey, you know, the Ferrari-style engine really isn’t what I want.” I’ve occasionally seen people actually offer advice in this vein, and I think they’re just as horribly misguided. This is definitely one area where you should take your time, learn, let things play out. If you keep working at it, you will get to your dream car one way or another. Maybe not the one you envisioned originally, but you’d never trade it for anything.
Hopefully there won’t be any more addendums. I recently related to a friend that it’s actually because I’m so alone all the time, and have been “on the outside” so to speak, all along, that I can come up with this shit. When you spend all that time watching from a third-party view, and have the analytical mind I do, you kind of just work this stuff out. I can’t seem to apply it to myself, but at least I can write it down.