Do you ever feel like you’re hitting one romantic roadblock after another and no one you meet is quite right for you?

Before you find the right relationship, you need to get to know yourself. A little introspection can help set you on the path to meeting the person you’re supposed to share your life with.

Sometimes, it helps to simply sit down and ask yourself a few questions about what you’re looking for.

No, you don’t have to make a checklist with every physical trait or personality quirk you’d like your partner to have. Instead, you need to think deeply about the life you want for yourself and where your partner would fit into it.

Here are eight essential questions you need to consider before you meet “the one.”

1. What level of commitment are you looking for?

Perhaps you’re seeking a partner who is ready for a serious, long-term commitment. Or you may just want a casual fling right now.

Be honest with yourself about what you really want from a new partner so that you can be clear about your intentions from the beginning.

2. Where do you see yourself in one, five, or even ten years?

Before you can find the right partner, you need to get clarity on your vision for your own life.

In a healthy relationship, both partners are walking down their own paths, but they lead in the same general direction. Find someone whose journey in life seems like it could sync up with yours.

3. Are you looking for stability or adventure?

Maybe you’re looking to buy a house and settle down in the next few years. Or perhaps you’re dreaming of traveling the world and living one day at a time for a while.

Your ideal partner will be on the same page—this is one area where opposites might not attract.

4. Is marriage important to you?

Some people have no interest in tying the knot and view marriage as nothing more than a piece of paper. On the other hand, some people spend years thinking about their ideal wedding day.

In any relationship, both partners should share the same view on marriage.

5. Do you plan to have children?

This is one area where partners can’t exactly compromise if they don’t feel the same way!

If you want to be a parent one day, you need to find a partner who is up for all of the challenges and rewards that raising children brings. But if you don’t want children, you’ll need to be upfront about this as well.

6. Do you want a partner who shares your faith?

While some people don’t practice any religion, others hold their faith at the center of their lives.

This question is especially important if you may want to have children one day. Upon reflection, you might realize that you would prefer to date someone who shares your faith.

7. How do you picture you and your partner spending your days?

Do you imagine your partner being home for dinner with you every evening? Or would you be happy to have a partner who travels for work and leaves you with a little more independence?

Take some time to consider how you picture yourself spending your time with a partner. What would your schedules be like? What hobbies would you enjoy together? Would you both prefer to go out or stay in on weekends?

8. Do you have any real dealbreakers?

If there is a certain habit, belief, or behavior that you know you just can’t accept in a partner, keep that in mind on first dates.

It’s okay to have a few hard boundaries and a couple of non-negotiable dealbreakers. It’s not about being picky—just be honest with yourself and recognize the things you’re unwilling to tolerate.

Have you had a string of bad luck with past romantic partners? If you want to get back into the dating game with a whole new outlook toward creating the relationship you want, contact me today to see how therapy can help!

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