I imagine a situation where the blue light of the computer is filling a dimly lit room, there has been a somewhat frantic internet search happening for the last hour, and nothing particular has shifted, yet a sense of groundlessness has taken hold.
We do this. We feel lonely. And much like some physical anomaly we would look up on WebMD; we turn to the web to try and help us untangle our mixed emotions.
If the search for answers has been fueled by the question, “How do I find my person?” there are normally some significant variables involved. For instance, we can date pretty good people, average people, and sometimes just use people as substitutes like we use sweets for “nutritional” purposes. And in the instant we realize that there could be someone better “out there” we go searching for, “How to find a better person than the person who I am with; who is actually just filling a gap in my life because I’m lost and afraid to admit it or I just don’t have it in me to face my insecurities.”
There is a formula for that.
Sometimes our search for another person who will become your person has less to do with wanting a better relationship and more to do with just not wanting to be single any more. Once almost every show on Netflix has been watched, once the dating app world becomes redundant, and it’s too soon to be a crazy cat lady or lone wolf in the woods, it is next to impossible not to wonder, “Where is my person?”
There is a formula for that too.
I’m also aware of the people who had their person and are not wondering how to find them, but rather asking how the lost them. In this case, we can wonder, “How could my person find something new?
There is a formula for that as well.
We get hit hard when we are with not quite the right fit, lonely for too long, or had a good thing going only to watch it leave. No matter where we find ourselves on the dating spectrum the crux of the formula is to find ourselves.
- Be in the moment:
We want things we seemingly can’t have. Anticipation creates more pleasure in the body than satiation. So, the initial component of the three step formula for finding your person is to learn how to let the moment fill us—how to become ripe with pleasure and embolden by pain.
We want life to be reliable but not too predictable. So, we keep busy. If we are to let the moment fill us we cannot “Wear busyness as a badge” as Brene Brown says.
A full breath must be reveled in. We are still breathing. About half the portion of food that we ingest can fill us if we pause for two seconds with each bite and taste the bounty of flavor in something as simple as a ripe strawberry. Our muscles have a chance to sing out in celebration from a simple cat-like stretch as an acknowledgement for the unending work required of them.
Yes, each moment is full of miracles if only we can pause for two seconds—just enough time to notice them. Then another two seconds—just enough time to recognize the simple miracles unfolding. Then another two seconds—just enough time to appreciate the fullness of the moment. Then another two seconds—just enough time to mourn the moments passing and be filled up by the cycle of birth and death in a matter of seconds.
Simply, when searching for our person, be mindful of all the moments on the journey to the destination.
2. Take the Journey
This initial part of the three step formula can take a life-time to master. So, the concurrent initiative is to enjoy the journey. The formula isn’t one that goes in order. It runs parallel. It intersects with conflicting desires. It is in the foreground and background. And we forget all about it when we buy into the belief that finding our person will mean something. It doesn’t. It is just a part of the journey. We come across all sorts of people in our lives; each of them offers a unique contribution.
So, when we start to make our person significant we make them a destination and even an object. An object is something we can own—temporarily. Therefore, in addition to being drunk with the miracles that happen in the moment we also need to set each moment free by enjoying the journey.
3. Remember what matters.
Lastly, the third part of the formula echoes the first two parts in that, “Everything matters. Nothing matters.” Enjoy the moment or don’t. Sink into it or speed past it. Focus on the now or something else.
The truth is that in our search for a formula, a person, an object, or an experience is really the search for how we can become more of who we are. We long to be at home in our bodies while simultaneously defending against our bodies decay. And we often search to reconcile this disparity through “finding our person”.
Give up on finding your person.
We can still want to find them.
We get to feel our feelings and have our desires.
And the real formula is to be the person you want to be with in each moment, on the journey, and though the profound and trivial unfolding that is our lives.
“Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place and I don’t care how tough you are it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard ya hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done!”
― Sylvester Stallone, Rocky Balboa