Did you ever watch that movie back in the 90’s with Richard Gere and Julia Roberts – Pretty Woman? (If you haven’t, it’s definitely worth your time)
If you have seen it… then let me ask you a simple question.
Why (or more specifically… HOW) did a high status and rich lawyer (Richard Gere) end up falling in love with a woman who sells her body for a living and apparently didn’t have any “class”, any education, or the other characteristics that society tells us we should have?
Perhaps love is blind? Or perhaps there are other factors at play here?
Let me come back to what the answer is a bit later on.
Interesting thing about men falling in love…
In all my research into why men and women fall in love, I’ve come across some very interesting and surprising discoveries.
For example… men tend to fall in love within hours of meeting a woman. In other words, the biological process of falling in love for a man, happens rather quick
(We’re talking about the cascade of dopamine, oxytocin and vasopressin in the brain but let’s not get too geeky here.)
What this means for you, is that when it comes to dating, the first few hours or the first few interactions are probably the most important.
This doesn’t mean a romance couldn’t ensue later down the track, it is just to demonstrate the speed in which “falling in love” occurs.
Another thing I have found interesting is this, the more effort you put into wanting someone to like you, the less likely they will fall in love with you.
So ironic huh?
(Perhaps I’ll talk more about that in another article.)
I believe one of the biggest roadblocks to romance is our need and desire to be perfect. It is our desire to be “enough” that is causing us much of the pain and suffering.
Watch this Commitment Triggers episode on Youtube…
If I could only just be enough…
If I could just be tall enough, pretty enough, thin enough, smart enough… perhaps then I am worthy of love, perhaps then I’ll find that man who loves me, perhaps then he won’t leave me again…
(Even though we theoretically and intellectually know that nobody in this world is perfect, we still chase after this idea of “perfection”.)
And look, there’s nothing wrong with chasing perfection. It is, by all means a “good” thing.
An artist chases perfection and takes their art to a whole new realm.
An athlete chases perfection and sets a new standard for the rest of the world.
A designer chases perfection and creates a brand new paradigm of thinking.
However… (And this is a BIG however…)
When it comes to love and romance, the pursuit of perfection is perhaps your biggest enemy.
That’s right… the pursuit of perfection kills love.
Because for as long as you’re trying to be perfect, you can’t be fully engaged with a man. You can’t fully be present and “fall” into the moment.
You can’t feel the subtle emotions that are required for romance and passion to exist.
You’re simply too busy in your own head being caught up with this idea of perfection.
(Remember perfectionists aren’t happy people)
And men simply don’t fall in love with perfect women.
In order to fall deeply in love, a man has to be able to relate to you. It’s hard to relate to someone when they’re stuck in their own head – when we try to be perfect, we really are stuck in our own head.
So if you feel like you have to strive towards something, strive towards being imperfect.
Julia Roberts wasn’t trying to be perfect in Pretty Woman. She was as imperfect as it gets… just like you and I deep down inside.
Men fall in love with imperfect women, because these women are real.
But don’t all the “perfect women” get all the attention?
I know what you’re thinking… perfect women get more attention.
Yes and no.
Sure, men as a collective whole may be fascinated by those “perfect women” and perhaps even give them most of the attention.
But there’s a huge difference between attention and love.
It’s a difference that can be hard to see when you’re chasing attention, but perhaps when you’ve reached the top of the pyramid of attention, then you’d realize how empty attention is.
(Remember all those Hollywood stars that have overdosed? They didn’t do it because they didn’t have enough attention.)
Because attention is cheap. It’s like those cheap snacks in your cupboards that only adds inches to the waistline, but are so damn tasty! (What? You don’t have those snacks in your cupboard? Me either.)
The truth is quite simple… men may give superficial attention to those “perfect women” but they fall deeply in love with those who are imperfect.
Which would you rather if you could only choose one? Men giving you attention or men actually falling in love with you emotionally?
It’s a real difficult decision, I know.
The best type of love is when it’s imperfect.
The perfect thing about love and romance is that it isn’t meant to be perfect.
It is meant to be two individuals sharing authentically and relating spontaneously.
It’s this pursuit of perfection that is sometimes preventing ourselves from being the authentic, spontaneous version of ourselves.
Men don’t fall in love with perfect women. They fall in love with real women… women who are imperfect.
So perhaps the most perfect thing to give yourself right now is the permission to be imperfect.
Perfection is the wrong game to play.
This all reminds me of when I was in my teenage years and playing a lot of competitive golf. (Don’t laugh, I know you think golf is an old man sport, at least I thought I was cool, that’s what matters right?)
Anyhow, I was young (and stupid) and I fell into the trap of becoming too fascinated with own golf swing.
Everywhere I went, I watched and analyzed my own golf swing in the reflections of mirrors and glass panels.
I used to record my swing on an old “piece of junk” camcorder and play it back over and over again, like a real golf swing connoisseur.
Deep down inside, I thought that if my golf swing was “perfect”, then everything would be great.
Boy – was I an idiot.
What I didn’t realize was that nobody was keeping score of what my golf swing looked like. Nobody even cared.
And as a result, I lost track of what really mattered.
(Which was shooting a good score and therefore winning tournaments… apparently that was what golf was all about… who would have thought!)
A golf swing that was aesthetically pleasing is, sadly useless. I know, hind sight is always 20-20 right?
Perhaps you’re also chasing after a certain type of perfection that is taking your focus off of what really matters?
Perhaps chasing perfection and chasing attention is sabotaging the possibility of men falling in love with you.
Men fall in love with imperfect women.
Take a moment, and just look around you.
Men everywhere are falling deeply in love with women who are NOT perfect. If you would look, you would see many examples of this.
Many would suggest that Hugh Jackman’s wife isn’t so perfect, but it didn’t stop him from falling in love with her…
Or similar things could be said about Pierce Brosnan’s wife Keely?
And of course there are countless other examples.
You see, in the eyes of men, these “imperfect women” suddenly become every bit perfect, because they are real.
Falling in love is real, it can’t be faked.
Perhaps love is blind or perhaps love is not about being perfect.
Don’t chase perfection… your imperfections are worth more than that.
P.S. Your job is not to be perfect. Your job is to be real.
In talking about men falling in love, I’ve done some more research. (I know, I sound like a super nerd – if only I spend half this amount of effort back doing my bachelor degree…)
Interesting discovery… after looking at hundreds of men and women in dating and relationships, in my own life and in those around me, I’ve discovered something really important.
I have come to realize that there are 2 common traits of those women whom men routinely fall in love with, regardless of age, culture or belief systems.
And I mean the kind of women that men adore and cherish.
But here’s the caveat… for a man to go through the emotional and biological experience of falling in love, a woman must exhibit BOTH of these traits.
That’s right, both. Miss one of these traits and it simply won’t work, and I’ll explain to you why one day.
These are two very different traits but equally as important.
(remember, falling in love is very much a biological process that occurs in your brain and your body)
It seriously took me years of research to be able to distill everything into these 2 traits. Perhaps I’ll write another blog post soon about what these 2 traits are and why they work to trigger men to fall in love. (Even if you’re not perfect)