The Secret To Finding (& Keeping) The Right Partner

Who said loving was easy?

Ben Affleck giving his wife, Jennifer Lopez, a kiss on the head

Image: People

Making your way through the minefield that is love and relationships is never easy. They always say you’ve got to kiss a few frogs (frogettes?) before your find your prince (princess), as ultimately, we’re all searching for the elusive ‘one’. But how do you know when you’ve found them?

It’s a question that American nutritionist Max Lugavere posed to a relationship expert Jillian Turecki, on a recent episode on his The Genius Life podcast. Taking a step away from nutrition to discuss how we cultivate love, Max asked Jillian “how do we find the right person?”

WATCH: Jillian Turecki Explains How To Find The Right Partner

Jillian’s answer didn’t have so much to do with knowing what sort of person is the perfect match for us, but rather, to know who we are as a person ourselves.

“You have to know yourself, and a lot of people don’t know themselves, enough to know what is really, not only important, but what it is they absolutely need in a partner.”

You may think you already know what you want in a partner. There is, of course, the typical list of smart, funny and attractive. Although, recent research conducted by Bumble found single Australians are becoming more and more emotionally intelligent, and prioritising personality over physical appearance.

But Jillian says it can be all too “easy to know what you want in a partner, but knowing what you need, you have to understand yourself and your psychology.”

What does she mean by this? “You have to understand what you’ve been through. You have to understand where your weaknesses are,” – yes, fellas, we’ve all got ’em, don’t lie – “your vulnerabilities are, and what’s going to be right for you.”

“And then you of course need to know what your values are.”

You may not have considered what your values are up until now, and that’s perfectly ok. It’s never too late to think about what yours could be. In essence, your values are what you consider to be important in the way you live and work, and to a greater extent, what you want from a relationship. You can also find a number of online tests to give you some idea of what yours might be.

While not exactly the same, values can be compared to relationship boundaries, things you are comfortable with in your relationship and things you’re not so comfortable with.

DMARGE has previously spoken to  Samantha Jayne, Relationship Expert and Advisor to Channel 10’s The Bachelor, all about relationship boundaries and when we did, she brought up the topic of values. Of values, she said, “Think about how you would like to be treated, how you feel, and what are your thoughts when it comes to physical boundaries, emotional boundaries, how you would like to be treated.”

“If it feels good it’s positive, but if it’s negative then it sounds like a boundary was crossed. A good way to reflect is the past, if you have felt pressured into things, or felt hurt, violated or bad, then write that down and that is a broken boundary.”

This comment touches upon Jillian’s point about understanding what you’ve been through. Men can indeed be abused by women in relationships, either physically or emotionally, and if it proved to be a traumatic experience then you’re not going to want to relive it.

So, not only do you want to make sure your potential new partner doesn’t exhibit the same qualities, it’s also important to communicate these feelings with them…perhaps not on the first date, of course, but if things progress then you may want to think about having a more in-depth conversation.

RELATED: Dating Experts Share Their Tips For Scoring That Elusive Second Date

So, going back to Max Lugavere’s original question of “how do we find the right one?” It can be summarised with the age-old saying, you can’t love someone else, until you love yourself first.

Happy partner hunting!

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