Remember when I made a friend in an Uber Pool car ride and a couple of weeks later we had a small dinner party together?
We talked about soulmates that night. And the way she described it has changed what the word means to me since.
(Soulmate. I know. It’s an intense word but I’m going to write about it).
I used to think it meant someone who you’d have to spend the rest of your life with. Someone who was exactly like you but in a different body.
But Jordan said:
“Hmmmm, I mean every single person in your life is a reflection of you— there are qualities that they have which you possess.. good and bad.
I don’t know if I can remember exactly what I said— and I certainly didn’t say it first but a soulmate is someone who shows you another layer of yourself, someone who comes into your life and shows you everything that is holding you back… it is just a normal ordinary person, but they are put in front of you to allow you to see exactly what you possess, but you have not been able to get to yet. And there can be a number of these people within a lifetime — I have already had three — they have been men and I have had relationships with them… but I am so very clear exactly why they were put in front of me, and also that it was not meant to be a long term partner…”
With that definition, I’ve had three soulmates. They know it too.
I’ve had 3 guys in different phases of my life stay long enough to show me exactly what I needed and shed light on my next step. I attracted them with the kind of person I was at the time, we grew and learned from each other and then we both moved on because life introduced distance and change between us.
And now, I know a different kind of soulmate. The kind that not only comes into your life to be a reflection of sorts, but the kind that is like a best friend and more. Someone who “gets it.” The kind that makes you a better person. The kind that knows me and accepts me fully. The one always wants the best for me. The person who will make me the most ME that I can possibly be.
I’m very lucky to have one in my life now. I call him my Rare Specimen (boyfriend just doesn’t do him justice).
I wrote about him here on Quora because I read the question and he inspired me to write. Then I got a lot of comments about how they could find rare specimens of their own.
Here’s how to find your rare specimen, or at least the way I see it:
Step 1) Know exactly what it is you want and are looking for.
After every encounter I had with the opposite sex, I mentally pieced together my ideal person. I would put together a list of desired characteristics I wanted in a person I could be in a relationship with. I “built a boy” in my mind. It went as general as “taller than I am” to specific details like “the kind of person who would rather spend nights feeding his mind, staying in than out drinking” or “someone who knows what char siu bao is, (bonus points if he knows how to make it).” “Confident” became more detailed: “having a sexy self assuredness that is tempered with kindness and goodness.” This list got more focused over the years. The list also divided into MUSTS (non-negotiables) to SHOULDS. The more specific I got, the easier it got for me to identify these traits in people I met. Imagine whatever this soulmate looks like to you and keep in mind that the list should have more about values than looks (unless that’s the kind of relationship you want, you know, one based on just looks).
Step 2) Become the person that a rare specimen would date. You can wish for a self-aware, physically fit, well dressed, good looking person but chances are, if you aren’t that yourself, it will be that much more difficult to attract that person to you. What does a soulmate look like to you? If you want them to see you as an equal and soulmate to them, you have to be what you ask for. As Gloria Steinem once said: “Far too many people are looking for the right person, instead of trying to be the right person.”
Step 3) Wholeheartedly believe that it exists.
It took me 24 years to come across someone who not only keeps me on my toes but is able to grow with me as life happens. Before that though, I accepted the fact that I was going to be alone for awhile, if not because of how often I was changing but because finding my person was not a priority or focus. I also had a lot of people telling me that my standards were too high, but I kept my standards even if my expectations were lowered and kept going. I made sure to get comfortable doing things by myself and figure out what I wanted, all while believing that a rare specimen existed out there. Even though I got disappointed by people and scared even, by some of the stuff I was seeing and hearing online about what dating has become, I still believed that a person who was as weird as I was existed, and I wholeheartedly believed I was going to find him. And I did. Believe and be open.
To sum it up:
Know what you want, do and be what it is you seek, believe in what seems like is “impossible”and live your life. At least in my experience, this sort of thing (finding your soulmate in this case) happens when you least expect it and only when you achieve absolute confidence in who you are and what you are looking for.
I hope that helps… It’s a bit difficult to describe because it’s a matter of the heart/soul and is better felt than read or written about.
Hope this makes sense though?
A lot more about what my rare specimen has taught me and is continuing to teach me in due time on the blog. He’s helping me become a better person in business and life.
When you love and you have to let go
The most Romantic Thing
Hopeful Romantic in Marry Me
“Attract what you expect, reflect what you desire, become what you respect, mirror what you admire”