If you want to get into a serious relationship with a partner that you (actually) love and want a future with then writing this list is a pivotal part of the process.
Here’s what you need to include when you write it:
Personality – It goes without saying that the overarching personality umbrella is probably going to be the biggest component of this list. Include any characteristics that are important to you, such as: he/she is outgoing, likeable, ambitious, caring, supportive, responsible, reliable, trustworthy, fun, quiet, independent, energetic, diligent, thoughtful. These things are pretty immutable and if they’re important to you, should be considered non-negotiable.
Morals and Values – Intrinsic to the core of the individual. For example: being a trustworthy person, the importance he/she places on family/career/money/education, is he/she racist, sexist or facist, loyal, does he/she treat everyone with the same amount respect, and how does she/he walk through the world? There may be fewer adjectives on this list but they’re fundamental to the integrity of any human, and future partner.
Time & Space – How much time an individual is able to (and wants to) give to a relationship and a partner is pretty important. Sure there will always be time spent apart, but you need to understand how much of this is okay for you in the long term. If he/she works long hours and travels frequently for work will this bother you? Or, are you perfectly happy to spend only weekends together? If you’re getting into a relationship with a person that works 16 hours a day, consistently, and there’s no real endgame in sight will you be happy? The same goes for space. If you need lots of personal time and/or physical space can you commit to someone who prefers to go everywhere with you?
Interests – You don’t need to have every single interest aligned with someone to make a relationship work and there’s a lot to be said for a couple who are willing to learn from one another. However, there comes a point where some interests have to vaguely align or your relationship will never be harmonious. For example: are you active and they prefer to lead a sedentary lifestyle. Is he a footy and beer type guy and you can’t stand either? Do you prefer to spend your weekends dancing in clubs and he wants Netflixandchill?
Non-negotiables – Not to be unnecessarily negative, but it’s good to know what things you won’t budge on when it comes to habits or behaviours that you don’t like. Not dating someone that gambles, smokes, has never read a book and doesn’t know how to drive might be where you draw a line in the sand?
Job – This is less superficial than it seems at the outset. Having a job and a means to an ends is an essential component to leading a satisfactory life. You don’t have to get too into the detail here but important points are: Does he/she have a job? Does it earn him enough money to live without compromising his health and integrity and does this job make him/her happy? Career ambition and goals are flexible here, because as we know, anything can change with effort and passion.
Sex appeal – Without some sort of sexual chemistry or attraction you’re looking at a friendship rather than a romantic relationship. Sure, the sexual component of your partnership may simmer after a little while but you don’t want to aim for none from the get go. Aim for someone with a similar sexual appetite as you and similar views about the importance of sex within a relationship. You can gauge pretty quickly whether someone enjoys sex and has a healthy appetite for it. Similarly, ascertaining what sex means for intimacy and the effect it has on the love, affection and mutual adoration within the relationship is important to gauge with a potential partner.
Physicality – I couldn’t ignore looks, because, looks are, undeniably a big part of forming an attraction to someone. Initial attraction is what will eventually catapult you into a scenario where you can learn about someone else and evaluate whether they’re an ideal match for you. Most importantly though, you shouldn’t neglect the crucial element of your desire, and ensuring that it is suitably fulfilled. We all have our peccadillos.