In life, most of us are on the quest to find “the one”
When I was younger, I was obsessed with finding that perfect guy. Looking back through my teenage journals, I could witness 16-year old Lauren who was wrapped up in her first boyfriend, crushes, dates, flirtations, musings and dreams of finding Mr. Right. While these are cringe-worthy moments there is something incredible that emerged from my journal.
The List for the Perfect Guy
On my list were 40+ categories and qualifications ranging from the basics like “nice eyes, nice hair,” to deeper criteria like “has a passion and drive to succeed in life.” For the next several years, every guy who I felt a serious emotional attachment to was scrubbed up against The List to see how he matched up. There were guys who came close, some who fell short, and man the stories I could tell…but then I met my husband.
It wasn’t until a few months after we started dating and had officially become boyfriend and girlfriend that I went home to my folks’ house for the holidays. In my childhood bedroom, I rediscovered my teenage journal with the original list. My husband was with his family in Illinois that Christmas, and it was the last holiday we would spend apart because after running Kevin through The List, I discovered that he met all the criteria. As I write this post, we’re coming up on our seventh year of marriage and (God willing) with many more to come.
Obviously I’m a huge proponent of making the list for the perfect guy (or girl)
I’m also a big believer in The Secret. The belief that by focusing on what you really want in life, putting it out into the universe to make it happen, and if it’s aligned with God’s will, Fate, or whatever you want to call it then it can come to fruition. Philosopher Paulo Coelho, the author of one of my all-time favorite books The Alchemist, calls it your “personal legend.” He also wrote one of my favorite quotes:
“But if you believe yourself worthy of the thing you fought so hard to get, then you become an instrument of God, you help the Soul of the World, and you understand why you are here.”
So while I’m still figuring out the greater purpose of why I’m on this planet, I try to thank God every day that I found my person, the perfect guy for me to live out this existence. I’m not saying our marriage is perfect, and damn if we’ve been through our own struggles, issues that threatened our relationship, but by recognizing that I’m lucky and blessed to be with this man makes me want to help other people I care about to find that perfect guy or girl as well.
Y’all might remember our pal Jenn Ciccarelli who broke the internet in Charleston, S.C., a few years ago. Jenn came over to my house the other week so we could catch up and start working on our next post to hopefully go viral. But what emerged out of our conversation was The List. Jenn blogged about The Art of Making The List.
Jenn says: “The List. You know the one. It outlines all the pertinent parts of your perfect person. I’ve heard of The List always. Who hasn’t, right? I feel like there’s even a Sex and the City about it. I’ve just never made mine. Seems strange, doesn’t it? I’m the biggest proponent of putting pen to paper to breathe life into something. The first one telling people to put things in the Universe if they really want them to happen. The most out-loud believer that we control our own destiny, as long as we are resolute and sincere. When I wanted to move to Charleston, I, literally, PUT it everywhere. So to think, when the one thing I love most in this life is love, that I haven’t sat down and actually fashioned what it really looks like to me in a tangible way seems a little, I don’t know, like what the fuck, self. OF COURSE YOU SHOULD HAVE A LIST.”
Then Jenn and I spent about an hour writing out her list for the perfect guy. Respecting her wishes, I’m not going to publish it, but what I have done is outlined the categories we discussed to help you discover what attributes your perfect person will also have.
How to Find the Perfect Guy or Girl
Step one – write it down! You have to put your intentions out there so God, the Universe, whatever higher powers know what you’re looking for. Write in in your journal, a blog post, Google Doc, somewhere that you can always go back and read it again.
Next, think through all the criteria for your perfect girl or guy. Yes, some of these traits may seem superficial but chemistry is often predicated on physical attraction. You must also dig deeper into the emotional, mental, and spiritual attributes of what your ideal mate will have. Here’s a template for making a list for “The one”
- What does he/she look like? Eyes, hair, height, build, facial hair pro/con etc.
- Style: classic, preppy, hippy, hipster, trendy, lumber sexual, no basic bros, could care less – his/her style should compliment your own
- Location: is he/she Southern, Northern, Midwestern, West Coaster, from another country? Are long distance relationships a deal breaker? Where you ultimately would like to settle down is something you need to think about.
- Family: do you want someone with a big family? Are you an only child and want to find someone like you? Do you want to have big holidays with lots of folks around? Think about what your life would be like with this person and your people.
- Politics: left, right, moderate, liberal, conservative, anarchist?
- Music: what type of music does he/she listen to? Do they like to go to concerts or festivals? Can he/she sing or play an instrument?
- Travel: loves to, hates to, occasionally wants to, has been to 100+ countries
- Intellect: creative, artistic, mathematical, does intelligence matter to you?
- Philosophy: how does he/she think about life and this existence?
- Faith & religion: Christian, Buddhist, Jewish, Muslim, Atheist…or nothing at all. Your call.
- Food: healthy or not? Can he/she cook? Should he at least possess the capabilities to make breakfast? Note, this was one on my list. Another one of my criteria was that he enjoys going out to nice restaurants and orders dessert
- Connection: is this someone you want to be able to talk to for hours? Do you want someone who will just listen to you? Is he/she an introvert/extrovert like you?
- Going out: is he a party boy or is she a social butterfly, or prefer to stay on the couch at home? Another friend who was on his quest to find the perfect girl once told me that he’d prefer to find a girl that was happier having 1-on-1 time with him instead of being at the bar.
- Drinking and smoking: acceptable, deal breakers, in recovery, addicts need not apply. Write this out.
- Sports: is he/she a football fan? Likes to golf, plays tennis, belongs to a country club? Soccer fan? Basketball? Baseball? Rugby? You name it. We know how important an affinity for sports is here at Pretty Southern.
- Stuff: this is actually a big one. Minimalist vs. materialistic. Does he have more shoes than you? Does it matter?
- Is he/she a hot mess? Do you recognize this person is a train wreck, like you, or they really have life on lock down?
- Financial security: if finances matter, is he/she a saver or spender?
- Charitable: does he/she volunteer? Is there a certain philanthropy you’re involved in and want him/her to help, too? Do they donate to a cause, tithe to a church (see religion) or have some sort of altruistic endeavor?
- Star gazer. This one was another one of mine. He has to be content with sitting next to me, looking up at the night sky, without getting bored.
- Cuddler: another one of mine. Must love to snuggle
- Sexual: I’ll let y’all decide what this means to you.
- Love. Ditto.
Now to wrap this list up, Jenn said this while we were working on her list that made me have a giggle fit. You know, where you start laughing so hard that you’re crying and can’t talk. We were talking about the importance of him having his shit together, that he wouldn’t be on some journey of self discovery, he’s just walking through life’s path:
“He’s like Atreyu through the mother fucking swamp. Like okay, cool, I’m just gonna go. I’m going to get Falcor and ride free until we get the princess. We’re free. We’re out of the journey.”
To close with a final thought from Jenn: “I encourage every person to make their list. It doesn’t have to be about a person. It can be about a dream project. Or a dream trip. A dream goal. Just a dream. Make your list. Breathe it in to life and make sure you’re living up to it. Don’t slow down or stop until you do. Never believe that anything is unattainable. And don’t settle. You’re a fucking rock star.”