What to Look For in a Partner

what to look for in a partnerThe question “what are you looking for in a relationship partner?” may seem like an easy one to answer. Common attributes that come to mind include intelligence, kindness, sense of humor, attractiveness, or reliability. No matter what we think we’re looking for in a partner, the people we wind up choosing don’t necessarily match our criteria for an ideal companion. The reason for this is very simple; we don’t always want what we say we want.

The laws of attraction aren’t always fair. We may think we are looking for a partner who complements us only in positive ways, but on an unconscious level, we are frequently drawn to people who complement us in negative ways as well. What this means is that we tend to pick partners who fit in with our existing emotional baggage.  We are inclined to replay events and dynamics that hurt us in the past in our adult relationships. We choose partners who fit in with destructive patterns, not because we enjoy them, but because they’re familiar.

When choosing a life partner, it’s important to break free from harmful tendencies from our past. Consider the people you’ve previously chosen to be with and think about why it didn’t work out. Were they too controlling? Passive? Jealous? Elusive? Did they make you feel a way you felt in your past? Did the situation mirror a dynamic from your childhood?

While we can’t know for certain all the good and bad characteristics our partner will bring to the table when we first meet them, there are certain universal traits you might want to look for in a relationship partner that will ensure a happier outcome. No person is perfect, of course, but here are eight key qualities to look for in a partner:

1. Emotional Maturity

Every person comes equipped with flaws and emotional baggage. Seeking perfection is an idle search. Instead, what you should look for in a partner is emotional maturity. This means someone who is willing to think and learn about themselves, who is open to reflecting on the past and evolving in the present. This certain someone should be non-reactive, in the sense that they think before they act. They don’t let their instant emotions rule their actions. They are independent and self-assured, which means they aren’t looking to you to fix or complete them.

2. Openness

Along with emotional maturity, one of the things to look for in a partner is an openness to feedback. Not only should your partner be interested in changing his or her own self-limiting behaviors, but he or she should be open to hearing what you have to say. Open and honest communication is vital to sustaining a close relationship. When a person puts up a wall that says, “I am unwilling to listen and unwilling to change,” there is really little room for growth on both your parts. When a couple is willing to openly communicate about themselves and their feelings and reactions to each other, they avoid building a case and creating tensions that later tear them apart. By being resilient and hearing each other out, they construct a solid foundation for a workable relationship that is sure to evolve over time.

3. Honesty

While deception is generally frowned upon, lying is sadly common in many relationships. Some couples believe they need lies to survive, yet research shows that lying less is linked to better relationships. Being able to trust is so important when choosing a life partner. Look for someone whose actions meet their words and someone who is open about how they feel. It’s better to be with someone who will tell you what’s on their mind, even revealing that they’re attracted to someone else, than to make those topics taboo or off limits, which can create an air of secrecy. Even when the truth is hard to take, it’s in your best interest to really know your partner.  Someone who hides aspects of themselves can leave you feeling insecure and mistrusting.

4. Respectful and Sensitive

One of the most valuable qualities to look for in a partner is respect. When you find someone who encourages you to be yourself, you can feel secure in your relationship, yet independent within yourself. It’s easy to feel loved when someone encourages you to do what lights you up and makes you happy. This same person may be willing to challenge you when you’re engaging in self-destructive attitudes and behaviors. This attuned way of relating is both sensitive and respectful of who you are as an individual, separate from your partner. When someone appreciates you and takes an interest in the things you are passionate about, you can really share life with this person, while continuing to pursue your unique interests.

5. Independent

People often make the mistake of thinking that a relationship is a way for two people to become one. Attempting to merge your identity with someone else is not only bad for you, but bad for the relationship. When couples fall into routine and forego their independent attraction to each other, things tend to go south. Real relating is replaced with an illusion of connection or “fantasy bond.” This sense of fusion subdues the passion in a relationship. By maintaining your individuality: enjoying separate interests along with interests you share with your partner, keeping your outside friendships and always trying new things, you keep romance and attraction alive.

6. Empathetic

In addition to being a good communicator, you should look for a partner who is empathetic. It’s fortunate to find someone who is willing to hear out and relate to your struggles. When you have a partner who aims to understand and feel for what you experience, you are able to be more vulnerable and reveal more aspects of yourself. Compassion is one of the most important human traits, and you should strive to find a partner who can easily feel for other people.

7. Physically Affectionate

One of the symptoms of a “fantasy bond” involves a lack of affection and sexuality between a couple. Physical affection is an important part of life. It is a way people stay connected and close to those they love. Keeping your relationship vital and intimate is part of making love last. It’s important to choose a partner who accepts love and affection, who is also giving of love, affection and acknowledgment. Your sexuality is a part of you that shouldn’t fade with time. Keeping your feelings alive means expressing them verbally and physically.

8. Funny

Sense of humor is as important as it’s made out to be. Laughter is the best medicine when it comes to most things, but especially relationships. Someone who is happy to just hang out, have fun and laugh with you is someone worth sticking with. Being easy-going and willing to laugh at yourself are highly beneficial characteristics to look for in a partner. A person who is lighthearted can be well worth getting serious with.

When we consider the many things to look for in a partner, each of us will have a different idea of what’s important. We may be drawn to more specific traits like creativity or work ethic, green thumbs or blue eyes. Yet, choosing people who strive to live by the qualities listed above will help ensure our best chance at happiness in our relationship.

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You know, this list is a perfect filter or checklist with dating. I am my own victim of fantasy bonds. Whoa! If I follow this advice things will certainly improve.


I believe and know that I am a good women, I respect a man and myself too. I was married, now engaged and I believe this one is not for me. We tend to take relationships for granted, I think its about time for one to rethink and just not go into a relationship for the sake. At first the person will be promising, I am referring to little things. All I ever wanted was a good relationship with God being the centre, as I believe everything that we get to wish for will follow. God is important in a relationship, all the best to everyone.


Now days, you can easily find the good women using dating sites. Before marriage, dating with her is good option to know about her. So now, dating website plays very important role in find good life partner.


i have made the same mistake twice but my problem really comes to my trying more to please others and let my self suffer from complete lack of every part of what a life togather should be


Look up codependency…. you have a bad case of it!! I know, I’m in recovery for it now. Celebrate Recovery meetings helped me tremendously


Sometimes We tend to take relationships for granted, I think its about time for one to rethink and just not go into a relationship for the sake. At first the person will be promising, I am referring to little things. All I ever wanted was a good relationship with God being the centre, as I believe everything that we get to wish for will follow.


I know right, I almost made a relationship official where I was constantly trying to please him and was blind to how toxic it. He didn’t understand what relationship and love was about besides sex and I’m glad I’m out of it.

Anyone out there, if they don’t like you for you or don’t build you up, it’s not worth it.


True. I lost my husband who was so loving and kind a d who had really spoiled me. Am wondering if there is any man out there who can match him. Its rather lonely all one but I try to keep myself engaged in farming. Am a grandmother though.


 I am a 30-year-old boy who has reached the sixth primary school level. Sports body look for a wife and a companion of a lifetime to get married to get to know the seriousness of the desire to send a clear and comprehensive definition in order not to waste time and thank you


That’s interesting. Exactly what I’m looking for. yet, there are some criteria I’ve been afraid of asking for because I thought I was being too demanding.


I was engaged to someone so selfish it hurts just by talking about it. We were in a relationship where physical attraction was none existent. Communication was horrible as he thought everything was about him. Thanks for this article.

Wumi 'Dayo Salaam

If you want an excellent marriage, you got to diligently prepare and work for it. A good guy or lady don’t come so cheap….. You got to be Focused with your life, be objective, be at the right place at the right time. Detest infatuation. You highly independent and principled… You kind of focused personality will look for you….
We all often make mistake due to infatuation, lust, physical attributes, face, voice, insatiable desire for material things…

How many ladies or man can afford keeping a gift from his or her girl/fiance, waiting to be sure about the quality of the relationship.

We are often gulibble. Honestly, that has misled many. There is less likelihood of getting quality relationship from clubs, parties and the like. Better wives abound in the active field of purposeful life.
Likely positive indicators are; 1: Emotional balance; 2: Intellectually sound and focused personality, 3: Purposeful life, 4: A busy personality who has less time for distractions. 5: Conduct integrity on the person and his/her friends 6: Assess the Family and their Value system. Discipline parents often produce better personalities. 7: Completely avoid opportunist. 8: Drop any who avoids discussing issues. They are most likely pretenders. Successful marriage requires constructive engagement of both parties. The one that avoid discussion is not willing to help the marriage grow stronger. Power and strength grow out of disagreement s to agree. There must be friction, which mutual commitment MUST neutralize via reasonable compromise. I perfect marriage matters are both respected. No one dominate on matters of mutual value to the marriage. Best couples Focuses on their marriage. The fruit of successful marriage begeth other secondary interests which are strictly treated by the couple mutually. Third party creating a secret part districts the marriage.

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