There are billions of people in the world, but finding someone special can be one of life’s greatest challenges.
How can you know whether you’ve found “The One,” especially if you’ve been hurt before and have lost faith in your own judgment?
There’s no perfect answer, but there are plenty of clues that can point you in the right direction.
Here are eight signs that you’ve found your soulmate:
1. You don’t need to wear a mask when you’re with them
The right person for you will always accept you – just as you are.
Whether you are feeling confident or insecure, dressed up or longing around in a t-shirt and leggings, they will make it clear that they are crazy about you.
You never have to put on a façade; they know you are human, and are willing to forgive mistakes and strange quirks.
2. You both put the same amount of work into the relationship
A one-sided relationship is depressing, and rarely translates to a happy long-term partnership.
If you suspect that your partner doesn’t care for you in the same way you care for them, it’s probably time to move on.
Equally, if you find yourself unable to return their feelings, it’s better to break up so that they can find a better match.
3. When you picture the future, you see them beside you
Close your eyes and picture yourself ten years from now.
Where do you want to live?
What kind of hobbies would you like to do?
Do you want to have children?
If you automatically imagine your partner beside you, that’s a good sign; it suggests that you have started to think of them as your long-term love.
4. You’re willing to try anything once, as long as they’re by your side
Love often gives us the confidence and inspiration to move beyond our usual routines.
Consistent support from the right partner can help you step out of your comfort zone.
If you’ve met someone who makes you feel as though anything is possible, there’s a good chance they are The One.
5. Both your families approve
If your family are abusive, this one doesn’t apply, but it’s usually a positive sign if your relatives approve of your relationship.
Your parents and siblings should want to see you with a partner who makes you happy and enriches your life, so they will be delighted when you meet The One.
6. They are the first person you call when you get some important news
When something important happens in your life, who do you call?
If the answer is “my partner,” this indicates that they have earned themselves a central role in your life.
It suggests you find them trustworthy, which is a non-negotiable trait in a partner.
7. You share the same core values and life goals
You don’t have to agree with your partner’s opinions.
In fact, one of the greatest joys of a relationship is the chance to see things from another person’s point of view.
Neither do you have to enjoy the same hobbies or share the same group of friends.
Balancing time together with time apart is key in a healthy relationship.
However, if you want to build a life together, you will need to share core values and life goals.
Otherwise, you will soon find yourselves arguing.
For instance, if you are family-oriented and want at least three children but your partner has always imagined they would remain childfree, this would be an insurmountable obstacle to your happiness.
It doesn’t matter how much you enjoy one another’s company on a day to day level;
if you aren’t compatible, you will not be able to make it work in the long run.
8. You listen to one another
If your partner doesn’t listen and respect what you have to say, they are not The One.
Likewise, if you find yourself switching off during discussions or inwardly rolling your eyes on a frequent basis whenever they are talking, you aren’t compatible.
In a healthy relationship, both people value their partner’s opinions.
They do not interrupt one another, put each other down, or listen only because they are awaiting their turn in the conversation.
Above all else, trust your gut instinct when deciding whether your partner is The One.
If in doubt, don’t walk down the aisle or sign up for a mortgage just yet!
It’s fine to let love unfold at a steady pace.
Stay honest with yourself and your partner, and stay true to your needs when deciding on the next steps to take in your relationship.