What I need in a relationship

I’ve spent a loooot of time thinking about what matters most to me since I’ve moved from New York to Los Angeles. Of course, I did most of this thinking even before I moved, but it’s really now that I’ve been able to “start again” (especially after college) and build a new and stronger foundation. It’s what I expected and counted on to happen with the newfound space and “clean slate” in my LA life.

I’ve been meaning to write about “What I need in a relationship” for awhile now, but honestly, I didn’t have a solid answer until recently. I noticed that my answer kept changing over time as I kept meeting people and the thing is, it will continue to do so as I improve each and everyday.

So what kind of people do I want to be around? Am I becoming the kind of woman I want to be and therefore attracting the right kind of people? What sort of people inspire me the most? What traits do I value and appreciate in others?

As I get older, I get pickier with who I surround myself with, talk to on a daily basis and let close to me. Here is my list (not in any particular order) of what I need a person to be if I’m going to have a close platonic (or romantic) relationship with him/her.

1) Be Curious.

I follow my eye and my heart. I need someone who does the same in that they’re always curious and hungry to explore/learn. This usually means being adventurous and wanting to try new things and meet new people. Curious people push boundaries, test assumptions, question everything and think outside the box. I like people who don’t just accept things as they are but ask about it and want to see what it’s like.

2) Be Willing.

This ties into action. Just because you have thoughts and things you want to do doesn’t mean you will actually do or try something. I appreciate people who will do it or have the will to try no matter what it might look like or if they might “fail.” People who are willing to find out despite what it says on paper or what it sounds like. People who are willing to try, listen and learn… and then help or pay it forward afterwards. It doesn’t have to be perfect, but there has to be effort. I get along best with people who understand that a lot of the best things start with the willingness to try, understand and grow. Are you willing to get better even if it’s difficult? Are you willing to have difficult conversations even if you’re vulnerable for the greater cause? Are you willing to put yourself out there for something you believe in? You don’t have to be a master of everything, but with an open mind, open heart and the willingness to try (over and over), there is no limit to what you can do, achieve or be.

3) Be Positive.
Shit happens. Change is inevitable. Pain and disappointment are a natural part of life. I am attracted to people who acknowledge this and yet choose to see the brighter side of things. Instead of seeing the glass as half empty, they are grateful in general just to have the opportunity to make a choice to do something about it. I seek people who are fully aware of the reality but keep going anyway. These people are strong because they make the choice to be happy despite adversity. They lift others higher even after pain or disappointment. They choose the brighter side, and always make people feel that there is something inside that is valuable. They brighten up the room with their energy and enthusiasm.


4) Be Genuine/Real.

I seek people who are comfortable in their own skin and are true to themselves. People who can relate to anyone on a human level. Those who accept who they are completely and are honest with themselves and other people. They can adapt to different situations accordingly, but they’re never trying to be someone they are not. It’s one thing to be a chameleon and adjust to circumstance, but if you’re always a different version of yourself to please other people, it gives off a level of uneasiness and discomfort, making it difficult for someone to trust you. I think it’s nearly impossible to achieve any degree of success without being trustworthy. Being genuine/real means that you are clear in expressing your opinions and are consistently truthful and transparent. I might not necessarily agree with you but at least I’ll never be confused about where you stand. Being genuine and real also relates to being honest and confident. This kind of person knows who they are, what they do and can make you believe in them. They are confident but not cocky. They are humbled by perspective and experience.

5) Have a growth mindset.
This is probably the most important quality of all. I believe everyone has the potential and ability to live their best life, therefore, I seek people with a growth mindset. People with this kind of mindset understand that intelligence can be developed. They focus on improvement instead of worrying about how smart they are. They work hard to learn more and get smarter in how they treat others and pursue what they care about. They know that what they feed their mind fuels their work and habits. They thrive on challenge, always looking to exceed the status quo. They undrestand that who they were or where they come from doesn’t determine who they will be. They have the capacity to let go of past mistakes and learn from it (quickly) and move onto a bigger challenge. If they don’t know or have something, they try to learn from other people instead of feeling threatened by their successes. I consider myself to be allergic to average and apathy and I feed off the energy of those who believe the same. The most amazing thing about growth mindset is that it can be learned and can help you with every other facet of your life whether it is learning a new skill, connecting with people or even getting in shape.

These are the things I am attracted to and look for in my relationships in both business and life. I’m certainly not perfect, but there’s not a day that I am not trying to improve myself and embody the traits above. And of course there are things like communication and similar interests to take into consideration, but without the aforementioned qualities, I wouldn’t even be able to consider diving deeper.

I think everyone needs to sit and write down what they need or seek in relationships- the fundamental character traits you value- otherwise you’ll get pushed around in relationships that are no good for you or find yourself at the same place each year. Establish a standard, be the kind of person you would want to hang out with and surround yourself with the kind of people that will help you grow and improve (and of course have fun with).

dsc_1449Every next level of your life will demand a different version of you.
PS. If you are most of these qualities you should follow me on Instagram. Would love to connect with you.
What do you need in a relationship?
AndreaM Signature

4 comments on “What I need in a relationship

  1. steve | 4 years ago

    What do I need in a relationship? Appreciation. That pretty much sums it all up. I don;’t need perfection or stuff or even words., My relationship with my over the top beautiful wife of nearly 34 years I can honestly say is based upon appreciation. Through this appreciation everything flows as eas like a Sunday afternoon,. Appreciation for each other’s space. Appreciation for each other’s quirks. Appreciation for each others strengths and weaknesses. Appreciation for our intercultural and interracial union,. Perfection? Nope…never gonna happen because perfection is an illusion., But appreciation makes that illusion as real as it is ever going to be.

    • AndreaM | 4 years ago

      Another touching comment, thank you so much for taking the time to share your heart here and ever so eloquently. Funny you say appreciation because I did a blogpost on that here: https://inbusinessandlife.com/2016/10/16/something-we-should-say-more-i-appreciate-you/
      I agree in that having the ability to appreciate is what helps us grow, balance and work together. Sometimes I wonder if people appreciate things as much as we might have years ago when things were different but I do know that those who do have deeper more fulfilling relationships for sure.

      • steve | 4 years ago

        Appreciation is diverse and multi-level. I appreciate our home but I APPRECIATE my wife if you get my drift. Our culture has become relatively short term memory and snapshotish individual moments as compared to continuum. If you have found that person, as it appears you may have, who creates and thrives on continuum with YOU, then you have struck a gold mine. Emphasis on YOU if you get my drift. Only he can make you…YOU.

        I personally could never understand how one could appreciate something over their wife or husband…i.e. stuff or friends or profession. Especially stuff…can’t put my finger on why people care about stuff. Buy a new car and drive it off the lot…it is a used car. Find your perfect soulmate and he/she never becomes used.

        But never expect perfection. Even the most stable relationship require work and maintenance and to somehow think that it all will be a happy fairytale is immature. You will never lose your identity and neither will he…but you can grow in each other’s identity. My wife completes me. I would be a mere shell without her. I suspect the reverse is true.

        My wife is very, very Korean…in a very traditional way. She is diametric opposite of me in more than a few ways. But it doesn’t mean anything because we APPRECIATE each other.
        Despite our unique differences, we have become one.

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