Dating isn't just about sitting down at a restaurant, smelling as fresh as a daisy. Finding one's soul mate can be as complicated as the 'splitting of the sea,' especially when one isn't certain how to go about doing it.
For instance, in the following scenario a girl is set up on a date with a boy. She wants to know what his anger threshold is. But she can't just ask him. So, at the hotel lobby, before they sit down, she tips the waiter to "accidentally" pour soda all over the guy's shirt. She'll judge, based on his reaction, whether he'll make a patient father.
In the end, not only does she succeed in humiliating this guy, she makes herself look like a fool for disrespecting another human being.
If you are looking for Mr/Ms. Right, the first thing you need to know is how to show love for your fellow human. Ahava, the hebrew word for love, has the base verb hav (give). Rav Hillel the Elder summed up my favorite dating guide, the Torah, with the following line, "If you do not like something, don’t do it to someone else."
Rav Avigdor Miller, a rabbi from New York famously known for his sharp tongue as well as bulletproof "Ten Commandments on dating," offers unsolicited advice to the masses.
- Stay in the HERE and NOW. Enjoy the moment together (afterward, you can analyze things to death).
- Assess your ability to solve problems together. Everyone goes through challenges at some point. Make sure this is a person you think can handle living through thick and thin with you (and vice versa).
- Don't give up. No matter how long it takes to find "Mr./Ms. Right," don't lose hope. It just slows down the process, trust me. Chin up, he is right around the corner!
- Look for a positive fit with family styles. While it's not a cardinal rule for two people to be from the same background, one does need to feel comfortable with the guy's/girl's family.
- Don't forget goals & values. Make sure the two of you want the same things for your future home and family. Without prior discussion on these topics, some marriages (or serious relationships) can get a little sticky.
- Have a low-abuse tolerance. Yes, it is true, we must judge favorably when it comes to our fellow man. But (you could sense 'But' hovering in the background), if he/she breaks your confidence or is deceitful in any way, cut the jerk lose and count your losses early on.
- Ask yourself, "Can I trust this person?" Trust is the key ingredient to any relationship. If you find, over time, that you don't feel trust toward this person, follow your instinct and drop the relationship.
- Do not be afraid of success. For whatever reason, sometimes, success is more terrifying than failure. Watch out for self-sabotage.
- Trust your friends; they are more objective than you are at this point. They care about you, their opinion is precious.
- Perhaps the most important since it is least remembered: Do not get swayed by romance and passion! It does not predict or ensure a successful relationship. People can be attracted to abusive men/women, or even people they don't like. When a person has romance without mutual respect, positive feelings, or even an enjoyment of each others company, then, when the chemistry wears off she will end up despising the other person (and likely, herself). If one begins with nothing, she will finish with nothing.