Reader Question: You talk about being open to receive love, welcoming a soulmate, recognizing a soulmate. How do I do that? I have a great family, wonderful friends, a job I like, and thought I was doing all those things. I’m so tired of being alone and lonely romantically. What am I doing wrong?
Let’s start with the last question first – You aren’t doing anything wrong. Soul and Soul Beloveds operate on a completely different “timetable” from our human ideas about these things. You might be 20 or 50 or 80 in human years when the two of you connect. Because the connection is happening at the soul level (and not the pop culture or human level) we can trust that our souls know a thing or two that we don’t. Or at least, that we aren’t aware of yet.
When my own darling husband and I met, well into our fifties and both of us previously married, we initially found ourselves wishing it had happened earlier, but soon realized we wouldn’t have been ready for the relationship we share today. We probably wouldn’t have even recognized each other for the Beloveds we are and might not have even liked each other back then. In our case, we were both still working through some childhood garbage. Interestingly, the childhood garbage itself was similar, yet we had gone in opposite life directions to deal with it. So until we finished with those opposite directions and began moving towards our true centers, we didn’t really have a common ground for connection. Meeting later in life had given us each the freedom and space to do our own self-exploration and healing in the ways that worked best and made our relationship all the sweeter now.
Because we also both went through years of wishing and longing and fretting, wondering when or if it would ever happen, giving up and then giving it another go, we can now see clearly that all our previous notions of time and timetable were irrelevant. In soul reality it actually happened quickly and with perfect soul timing.
Feeling romantically frustrated and weary is just like any blockage in any part of life. Begin breaking the stuck cycle by focusing on something entirely different, preferably something you enjoy, to get your mind out of its rut so you can get a fresh perspective. Can’t tell you how many times I’ve solved business problems or found something I’ve misplaced in exactly that way. Focusing on the problem only makes it loom larger and blinds you to possibilities. Engaging in something more pleasurable also ups the ante on meeting someone who shares at least one of your interests.
Back to the first part of your question and again we’ll work backwards.
How Do I Recognize a Soulmate?
It’s a common misconception that if your heart flutters and you can’t breathe and you feel all tingly and excited as if you’re buzzing on some high plane, then surely you’ve met The One.
There’s definitely chemistry going on, the question is “What kind?” Tune in to what is going on beyond all the surface exhilaration. Anybody can play that uber connection game for a little while, but no relationship can maintain that initial level of excitement long term, nor would you want to. With genuine soulmates, there will be a sense of connecting for your Soul and your Self and not just your body or the excitement.
You can also recognize your soul’s lover is by the deep sense of homecoming and safety. It’s OK to fall down, to fail, because he or she will be there with a hand to help you up or a hug or a shoulder to cry on. Other kinds of mates are not yet able to provide that kind of support. If anything, they are looking to you to provide it all instead of entering into mutual support and nurturing. Focus on connecting with a mate who supports you in becoming your best self and understands that’s a lifelong endeavor. Then you’ll know deep down it is safe to be yourself and continue growing through the ups and downs. Otherwise, you’ll find yourself stuck, trapped into being the tiny part of yourself that you were in that moment of initial chemistry. And that’s not what soulmates are about.
If you do happen to find yourself in a relationship with a Karmic Mate or Ego Mate, take heart. We learn to know and understand ourselves through our relationships, all of them, and we grow as our awakening, knowing, and understanding grow. Someone who tells you what to do, how to think, what to believe, or how to act - telling you who and what you “should” be, in other words - can still be a valuable teacher, but they are not your Soul’s Beloved.
That’s not so say meeting your soul’s mate is boring or without sparkly feelings. Far from it! There’s just more to it than superficial chemistry. Instead of garden-variety excitement, you’ll feel as if something is awakening inside, maybe something you sense has long been dormant, and your soul is rejoicing at this awakening. That feeling of having your breath taken away will quickly be followed by a sense of finally being able to breathe deeply. The “wait” that has been troubling you falls away and you feel as if every moment, every heartache, every detour, led directly to now. You will feel as if you have come home at last.
How Do I Welcome My Soul’s Mate?
The answer to this part is simple – with a twist - though sometimes challenging to implement.
You don’t find a soulmate, you become one. Put a different way, “A little Golden Rule goes a long way.”
But here’s the twist. In soulmate love, it starts with treating others as you would like to be treated - with love, respect, affection, and support - but the delivery focuses on doing all those things in ways that are meaningful to your Beloved. This is the Love Languages principle.
Each of us has ways we like to give love and ways we like to receive love. Welcoming our soul’s mate is a gentle dance of showing them how we like to be loved AND (and this is essential) tuning in to and delivering love in the ways they like best.
Let’s say that your guy loves to gives gifts. So he welcomes you into his life with presents, works long and hard to be able to buy the lovely things he wants to shower you with. He’s giving love to you in a way that’s meaningful to him. That sounds wonderful, but you would much rather have fewer gifts and more time together. In fact, you’re feeling “neglected” instead of welcomed, and like he’s trying to “buy you off” to appease you for the time he spends at work.
There’s no right or wrong here. Just a disconnect that can be closed by living the Love Languages principles. Become willing to gently speak up about your preferences – don’t expect him to read your mind – and help him do the same if he doesn’t already. If you’re the guy in that little story, before assuming she is ungrateful, pay attention and discover what speaks love to her. The Giver becomes the Receiver.
How Do I Open Myself to Love?
A good place to start is by making space in your life and heart.
Though it sounds silly on the surface, literally make space in your house. If your closets and cupboards are full, clear out some clutter to make a dedicated space for his/her belongings. If the other side of your bed stays jumbled with books, magazines, laptop, or any other non-sleeping, non-lovemaking mess, instill a new habit of keeping it clear, open and available. By the same token, if your heart is congested with the fallout from old relationships, set yourself on a path to learn forgiveness and practice release.
Practice intimacy. Romance and intimacy go hand-in-hand, but intimacy is not just sex. Sex is easy and good sex is nice, but rarely enough by itself to sustain a soul-satisfying relationship.
Intimacy = Into Me See
True intimacy comes from allowing yourself to be vulnerable, from surrendering to the new beliefs and new actions that are setting the stage for love. It comes from allowing someone to see behind the curtain of your everyday façade to the real you with all your lovely and not-so-lovely quirks.
Sense where you are still resisting intimacy, vulnerability, and surrender. What is the source of your fear? Is it real or a holdover from some previous experience? Hint – It’s almost always a holdover and you get to decide whether it’s still helpful. The more you clear out your own clutter, allow yourself to be vulnerable, and surrender to the softness of new habits and beliefs, the more open you become to receive (and give) love.
You don’t have to complete all of this clearing before meeting your Soul’s Beloved. As long as you are on this course, taking one step at a time, you moving another step closer.
As you meet potential mates, remember four things:
- Your ideal mate may not look like the types you have been attracted to in the past. Be open to new possibilities.
- If you find yourself doing all the changing and growing, it’s time for a reassessment and maybe a heart-to-heart. Or maybe it’s time to move on. Soul love is a mutual endeavor.
- It’s not your mate’s job to cure your loneliness. Even if you have a great life otherwise, you are assuming an empty space where you think a soulmate should be. Nurture that imagined empty space with your wonderful family, friends, and interests. Fill it yourself with practicing the Love Languages throughout your life and engaging in active forgiveness.
- You won’t always agree and at times you won’t even like each other, but you will be in this awakening thing together which makes a far sweeter, stronger love.
Tune in. Pay Attention. Notice. Thoughtfully respond. Because these are the things that soulmates do.