If I asked you what your dream girl looked like, odds are you would be able to immediately rattle off her ideal physical traits. Maybe you like petite, busty blondes, or maybe you go weak in the knees for lean, leggy brunettes and a pair of green eyes. Maybe you have a soft spot for redheads with porcelain skin. I bet you could give me a list of at least ten qualities that embody your dream girl.

But what if I asked you what she looked like on the inside? What makes a person beautiful to you, if your eyes are closed? Would it be as simple for you to rattle off a checklist, or would you have to give that more thought?

Mind you, physical attraction still needs to exist, without it romantic love ceases to exist… but if your dream girl shows up, would you be able to recognize her on the inside?

At some point in our lives, we have all been on a date with — or worse yet married to — someone that was very beautiful on the outside, but with whom you shared absolutely nothing in common. She could be rattling away about something that was very important to her, but you had zero interest. You were good about it, though: yawning imperceptibly through your ears; watching the TV screen just above her left ear; listening but not processing, punctuating her pauses with absentminded yet perfectly timed uhs, yeahs and mmms. Rarely asking questions in return that showed depth or interest on your part. Deftly steering the conversation back to your points of interest rather than admit the obvious: that you’d happily a stunt double to endure the next hour in your stead. A second date? Out of the question.

In order to find a woman who’s truly beautiful to you on the inside, you’ll need to identify what is important to you. For example: maybe you find it attractive when a woman can hold her own in intellectual conversations. So what qualities must she have to be able to do so? She must be well read, articulate, and able to truly debate without taking things personally. Or you’re intrigued by a woman who loves to travel. Does she need to be spontaneous or a meticulous planner? Financially independent, or are you comfortable paying her way? Perhaps you are attracted to women who want to be a mom. What qualities must she have to align with your idea of a good mother? Must she be nurturing and calm, or would you prefer someone who is less protective and encourages independence?

When looking for your dream woman it’s important to remember that while physical chemistry is a must, taking the time to find someone who is a good match for you on qualities that are deeper than looks are what will sustain your relationship in the long term.

Her inner qualities are like the solar power that will keep her attractive to you on the outside as well. It’s a beautifully symbiotic occurence when you’re able to find it. But in order to find it, you have to know what you’re looking for. Sit down, make a list of what you want in a woman. Your ideal. If your life was everything you wanted it to be, what would you be doing and who would be at your side? Then go another level deeper and ask yourself, what qualities must she have in order to be that person. Make the list as though you could have it all. Because you can. You just have to know what she looks like, on the inside.

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