THE FIRST KEY STEPS: In trying to find that elusive ideal soulmate, the first step is to work out what you want. What are you looking for, in general? You cannot be too prescriptive, otherwise good people will be ruled out, so it is probably best to begin with what you definitely do not want. What would turn you off and make you run a mile?
For me it is discourtesy, meanness and a beer belly! Any sniff of those three things and I'm gone like the wind. Most men prefer women to be good-looking, slim and pleasing to the eye, but they seem to leave their own appearance behind when they make those demands, while others think their own imperfect figures are invisible to women!
Make a shortlist of the essentials you are looking for in a mate, the ones you regard as very important on a long-term basis. In addition to that, make another list of up to six important things you can offer to that person or the relationship. If you are not sure about yourself, ask a friend to describe your best attributes. For example, if you were not educated beyond school level, it could be that all you feel you have to offer is being a good housekeeper (cooking, ironing, cleaning and rearing your children) because you were well taught by your parents. For your information, that's a lot to go on for someone not interested in being a career spouse!
What do You have to offer?
My list for what I desire would have to include: non-smoker, social or non-drinker, generosity, sense of humour, intelligence, slim to medium build, love of music and being romantic. That last one is important because I like the hearts and flowers stuff! So perhaps breaking up your desires into non-negotiable, desirable and just fine might show you what you must have in a soulmate against what you could accept. My non-negotiables would be in the smoking, drinking and communication region. I would loathe a stick-in-the-mud character who feels that his love is implied and he doesn't have to say it or show it. I want to hear it, loudly, and see it in his actions, as I will be giving lots of it in return. In that way, our feelings will seldom be taken for granted.
What I have to offer would be intelligence, romance, being tactile and loving, slim and good looking, independence, my own successful career and no money! What I lack in money, I make up for in love. It means that all the men looking to supplement their income, or build up their fortunes would give me a wide berth, but the successful, confident ones, who wanted me for my loving, my looks, personality, intellect, creativity, energy and drive, would be first at the door. Relationships are negotiable. Don't assume that what you think that person wants from you is only what you have to offer. It could be something you are not even aware of!
That could explain the deep attraction between a former lover and myself. This was the first relationship I had which resulted from specified requirements on both sides on a website. He wanted someone intelligent, attractive/beautiful, educated, articulate, romantic, professional, independent, with a sense of humour'. He hardly drinks, doesn't smoke and has a dry sardonic wit. I realised just how much he earned a couple of months later when he gave me a present. It was nice to be pampered as well, which was a very pleasant surprise!