It's key when beginning to consciously search for a life partner to pay close attention to a few things.
1. Is there chemistry (i.e., do I feel that lovely flutter in my belly and attraction)?
This does not have to be intense nor overpowering. Hollywood and the romance movies have done us the disservice of believing that all romance requires extreme passion when really just some lovely feeling of warmth and attraction and desire, however gentle they may be is enough to plant the seeds of a stronger connection.
2. It's absolutely important you feel some curiosity about who this person across from you, and also essential is that they express curiosity about you.
Curiosity isn't the same as asking a question and then turning the attention and focus back on themselves. It is about asking a question, listening to the answer and then asking a follow up with an interesting question. The finesse and art of communication can be learned; the inherent interest in another human being is something that comes from within. With these two important factors present, attraction and interest in one another you will have the foundation to find out if a stronger bond can be created.
The right partner is the one who is invested in their growth and willing to do the work on themselves to improve their relationship. You, in turn, will also be invested in your own growth and your own desire to improve your relationship.
As long as two people are willing to work on themselves and on the relationship, that's the perfect person to help you grow up while you are growing in your relationship.
If you find yourself saying things like “I can’t imagine life before you” or “You’re the best thing that’s ever happened to me” or, essentially “You complete me” then you've found a good Imago match or “the one.” You've found a partner to create a relationship in which you each will be challenged to grow.
Harville Hendrix says “When your greatest dream turns into a nightmare, you know you in the right relationship.” Our subconscious picks the perfect partner for our own growth. If you find that you are in a struggle or conflict, it means there is an opportunity to grow, both as an individual and as a relationship.
Relationships are designed to push our buttons so we grow into parts of ourselves that have been set aside, or that have been long lost.
What would it take in you to be okay with your partner just as they are?