I’m a big fan of the list: The do list, that can be found on a double-folded piece of paper which I snagged from The Four Hour Work Week by Tim Ferris. The grocery list, the kissing list (which I started after an inexperienced kissing session in 7th grade), the yearly to-do list, the 3-year big goal list, the bucket list, and my all-time favorite lists that I recommend to my hundreds of coaching clients from around the world: The Beasties list, and the Beauty list.
Having these two lists can prevent hitching up with someone who is highly incompatible with your values before you spend thousands of dollars on a wedding dress, Swedish meatballs and champagne.
When you meet your partner, don't you want to know you need someone who is a good communicator, wants kids and doesn't have anger issues? Of course you do!
Lust can seem like a hearty substitution for love and make you forget that your new romance has 7 out of 10 things that drive you bonkers. There are those happenstance chances of love at first site across the raw juice bar that end up with a fairy tale ending, but more marriages end up in divorce than happily ever after.
You don’t want to miss out on love because chemistry has led you into a very rocky relationship because you didn’t have a list.
After I was married, I had a list. It was short. It was sweet. My mental list wasn't really a list and was completely unacceptable because it wasn’t in writing. Here it is…
If I had to do it all over again I would have a Latin Lover.
That was it. That was my itsy bitsy unwritten, only in my brain list. This one sentence wonder had no bullet points or numbers. It was just something I thought about and occasionally mentioned to myself or a girlfriend over coffee. But the words we speak, and the thoughts we think are mighty powerful. So be clear in what you wish for because you will probably get it.
When I was a waitress, this nice Chilean man came in the restaurant with an acquaintance. He ordered Rosemary chicken with gnocchi and a Cabernet. It was not love at first site. Not even lust. There was no initial attraction, and I didn’t give him any thought. This South American man was just another customer whose water glass I refilled.
That man came in for dinner often. I was his server then we started to know one another on a deeper emotional level. We would have a glass of wine together while I was rolling silverware at the end of my shift. We would laugh and talk about spirituality and science. I started having more than just a friend kind of feelings. I was feeling connected to him. This happened when I got to know him from the inside, saw what kind of man he was. And I especially felt connection after he showed me how to dance.
Dancing is one of my passions, and the man who fit my tiny non-list wasn't only a spiritual scientist, he was also a Salsa teacher. I’m no Britney Spears, but being with a dancer was one of my dreams. Yet, I was married to an internationally-known bad dancer. Ask anyone in any pub in Ireland and they’ll tell you tall tales of a German-bred American from Appalachia that brought tears to those with stomped on toes and knocked over pints. If you want to meet a man that will sweep you off your feet read this...
My marriage wasn’t bad per se, nor did it have a fairy tale beginning, middle or ending. My partner and I were friends. We were roommates who had a child together. We were joined in friendly matrimony for 10 years but led totally separate lives. We were disconnected. And I wanted connection, and I got it with the man on my list. A list can help you connect and get disconnected. It all depends on the clarity of the list.
Every list needs a purpose. A list can help you get the relationship you want and also divorce and affair proof your marriage. Although my one row list was clear, it was too short and was missing 3 key ingredients:
- The pen.
- The paper.
- Any details.
Lists are best written long hand so they can be:
- Looked at
- Checked off, crossed out or framed and put on the wall if you so choose.
At the end of the day you will feel more accomplished with a piece of paper that reminds you that you actually did something, and these 2 specific lists can serve as your love map so you are not misguided and you know where you are going.
When I encountered the man who met the only requirement on my bullet-less list, I did end up feeling accomplished and connected. Connected to him and disconnected from my husband. Having an unwritten non-list kind of list, started a marriage shattering, tumultuous, emotional affair.
I felt confused because my list wasn’t clear. Confusion and affairs can be caused from not having the right kind of list, and having the right kind of list can also prevent them. Getting what you want is tricky when you don’t know what you want. So I encourage you do whatever it is to figure out what you want. And make sure to write it down.
Our life experiences help us get clear on what we don’t want. I call these the Beasties. This Beasties list is usually filled with annoying things from past partners. The Beasites can be penned in a notebook and tucked away in a drawer. This is the list you don’t want to re-read or focus on, but it is filled with details of the things that have driven you crazy and will help you gain insight.
The Beasties will give you clarity, purpose and a sense of knowing what you don't like. Looking at your past relationships will help you figure out if you can handle someone drinking ten cans of beer daily or who needs 99% alone time, or who puts the toilet paper roll upside down. I know I can’t. The Beasites list will help you gain more clarity. And out of the Beasties comes the Beauty. Want to know why you need a love map?
What if you are already hitched? Figure out what you want and have a fun yet frank discussion with your partner about what is important to you and what is on your list. Remind them about the things on your Beauty list and how good it made you feel when they did them.
Before I got married I was listless and confused. Making lists has helped me grow up, and feel like an accomplished woman. I can prove all the things I’ve finished with my masterly folded and scribbled on office papers lurking in desk drawers, my car, multiple purses, computer bags and the recycle bin in the driveway. I know lists it works and my garbage man will vouch for it.
If you are already married or in a relationship, you can hire a maid to pick up the dirty socks and appreciate that you’ve got somebody to love. But if you’re a lone wanderer, don’t ruin the chance of having a great relationship because you don’t have a list.
Think about the Beasites from your past, and write them down. But, don’t focus on them for long. The Beasties are the catalyst for the next list. After you finish working through the Beasties, take time to map out Beauty List and put your attention there.
The Beauty list is filled with the lovely things you do want in your relationships. Focus on what you desire in your life and love, because with over 7 billion people in the world, there is a pretty good chance there is more than one person who will fit your list, and then some.
The Beauty list is physical proof that there is magnificence in the world, your future and your love life. You have something to look forward to. Beauty is everywhere and the clarity of the Beauty list walks hand in hand with the Beasties list. Writing down the things you want in your life makes it real because you have a touchable object of focus.
When you are looking for love, put yourself out there, appreciate where you are and highlight the good stuff and keep it on your list. When you meet the partner that has most of the Beauty list and none of the Beasties, keep the lovliness of your relationship in the limelight and never ever cross it out.
If you want to find the love of your life and divorce proff your marriage, get the free tools you need to love yourself and learn how to attract love. Sign up for Dina Colada's EPIC Love Newsletter and you will receive her free ebook "Stop Pushing Love Away & Get the EPIC Love You Want.
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