Seek to Understand Yourself First as a Single Person

When I was in my late 20′s, freshly out of a divorce from a good husband I left out of ignorance and immaturity, I was determined that I was going to find a new relationship with a great man. I thought I knew it all (you thought teenagers knew it all, but I carried that arrogance into my 20′s) and having recently graduated with my Masters in Counseling Psychology, I was convinced I needed to seek a better man.

Back then, I had an advanced degree in psychology yet I understood very little about myself. I didn’t know what I didn’t know, so it took another decade to really understand that. I spent 4 years searching for the right man. During that time I read many wonderful books on creating great relationships and I will say that my favorites are still Getting to “I Do” by Patricia Allen and Are You the One for Me? by Barbara de Angelis.

Still, it took me many more years to understand that I needed to work on myself in order to attract the right mate for me. If you are dating and struggling to meet the right person, you may be putting the proverbial horse before the cart, just as I was.

It is so important that you take the time to figure out who you are and what you want out of life before you seek the one for you. If you want a relationship that is meaningful and will last, start with yourself. I am now in my 40′s, having found a wonderful man whom I married at age 31, who died when I was 40. I did remarry, as I was so convinced that I could have yet another happy marriage. This marriage is new and recent, with great prospects for happiness because of what he and I both have learned about ourselves.

What I learned during my marriage with my late husband was that I must continue to learn about myself. I grow with each interaction, not drastically, but enough. Sometimes the right partner for one person is the wrong partner for another person. If you do not seek to understand yourself, you will have a very hard time understanding someone else.

My challenge to you: take some time today to list your great qualities and those that need improvement. Be honest with yourself. If there are unresolved problems from your childhood or a previous relationship that get in your way when you enter new relationships, face them and work on them so they will not sabotage yet another relationship.

Join my upcoming webinar workshop on Conscious Dating: Relationship Success Training for Singles. They are held regularly, with the next one starting on October 6, 2010. For more information, click here:

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    Michelle E. Vásquez, MS, LPC

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