Stop Looking to Find Somebody

If you're single and looking for a partner or just a date, you've probably felt impatient, maybe downright frustrated.
I hear from a lot of lonely people who want to know how to find somebody. And before you lump the "lonely" in the category of hard up, some of them are people with presumably attractive options, and even those you imagine to live romanticized lives.
They may not be desperately hitting the pavement, but many of them are feeling anxious. They're looking to, and asking, friends for help. They're fueling a perpetual stream of books and dating services. And some of them are seeking advice from people like me.
If you've been married for the last 20 years, you might not relate, which means that even if you consider yourself a good friend to some of these lonely singles, you may not have given any serious thought to helping them! Imagine looking for a job for weeks, or months, or even years … without finding one.
You might start to question your value in the marketplace. Eventually, you might get depressed or bitter and give up.
You don't have to run off and find "the one" for your friends. Just listen long enough to let them catch their breath and get a second wind.
You probably (SET ITAL) can (END ITAL) relate to this: Maybe you've been anxiously searching for a misplaced item … only to find it right under your nose about the time you gave up looking. You can help a friend regroup.
When somebody gets preoccupied and distressed, they can become ineffective. Then, the most productive thing they can do is stop.
We don't find the perfect dress, or piece of art or car when we're in hot pursuit of it. And we don't find the perfect partner when we're in hot pursuit either. Often, it's when we're content with what we have (or don't have) that we stumble on a great catch, the one we never would have found had we been earnestly looking.
This is both my experience and the experience of many others who have finally landed the relationship of their dreams!
So, my advice: Stop looking … but when you stumble across a good prospect, take notice. Don't, for goodness sake, hurry off as though it really matters if you're late for your next appointment!
When what you've been looking for shows up under your nose, don't be too busy to notice.
And it will show up -- after you've stopped looking and caught your breath, after you've gone about living your life in a productive way. (SET ITAL) That (END ITAL) can be so much more attractive than anxious or desperate! Smile.
If you're looking:
-- Stop long enough to get a second wind.
-- Talk to a friend who will at least try to understand the significance of the looking process.
-- Feel how attractive you are now, to you.
-- Then feel how attractive you have the potential to be -- that's how attractive you are.
-- Go about living -- one step at a time -- and being your beautiful self.
Sometimes we forget who we are. In fact, if you lost sight of your potential early in life, you might not remember (SET ITAL) ever (END ITAL) knowing your potential. Ah, but I bet you've seen glimpses of it along the way.
If you're feeling discouraged, try to remember those times … the time you wowed your blind date or your fifth grade teacher or your boss. And remember that time -- if only for a fleeting moment -- you knew that you were everything you ever wanted to be? You still are.
And when you start being true to that, I promise you won't be lonely anymore.
Jan Denise is a columnist, author of the book "Naked Relationships," speaker and coach based in McIntosh, Fla. Please e-mail her at, or visit her website at To find out more about Jan Denise, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at

Author's Bio: 

Jan Denise is a nationally syndicated columnist, author of the book "Naked Relationships," speaker and coach based in McIntosh, Fla. Please e-mail her at, or visit her website at