Looking for your Soulmate?: Be Reasonable!

“I’m looking for someone I can really count on. I want to be able to call anytime and know they’ll be there. It doesn’t have to be a romantic partner, in fact, I’d rather if be a best friend.” Woman in her 50’s

“I want someone who thinks the way I do, who wants to hike and be outdoors, and who laughs at my jokes.” Man in his 30’s

Daily I have someone sitting in my office looking for, what Plato called, a soulmate. In The Symposium Aristophones tells the now familiar tale. Originally human beings had four arms, four legs and one head with two faces. Zeus worried humans would be too powerful so he split them in half. Since then we’ve been searching for our other half, or soulmate. This story has become a part of our culture in films such as Jerry McGuire who coined the now famous line, “You complete me.” Whether it’s defined romantically or as a BFF, it’s helpful to know the line between psychological health and unhealthiness. The first element is reasonable expectations. What’s reasonable? Maybe you see your wife as your soulmate but you also know she hates football, so you call the guys when you want to watch the big game. Perhaps you’re looking for a good early morning workout partner and instead of calling your best friend who lives down the hill you ask your new neighbor, Julie, if she’ll join you at the Community Center. What’s unreasonable? Expecting your wife will laugh at all of your jokes. Assuming your best friend will always pick up when you call. Counting on your husband to join you in your latest knitting project (even though he thinks “purl” is a necklace).

The key is to be surrounded by a group of family and friends that together make up a “soulmate.” Maybe you trade knitting patterns with your aunt, your best friend goes to foreign films with you and your neighbor loves to hike. This week think of someone in your life you can ask to join your circle.