Still searching for my soul mate
“I’ve been thinking about the concept of soul mates,” Naomi said. “My friend, Caitlyn, has been dating a man for the past year and she swears that they’re soul mates. I think you can actually see it when they are together.”
“What’s your concept of a soul mate?” I asked.
“It’s how she talks about him,” Naomi said. “It’s like they’ve searched lifetimes for one another and have finally found each other. There’s a special energy between them, a magic of sorts. Even though I’m happy for her, I feel a sense of regret, sadness and envy. I wish I had a relationship like theirs. It feels like I settled for stability and married Jeff, instead of finding my soul mate. Why do some people find their soul mates and others don’t?”
“It sounds like finding your soul mate is based on a feeling, like a unique key fitting into a lock, right?” I said.
“Tell me about your soul mate,” I said.
“He’s someone who would understand and accept me just as I am,” she said. “And the passion between us would be indescribable!”
“No wonder soul mates are so attractive,” I said. “Have you talked to Jeff about your thoughts on finding a soul mate?”
“I wouldn’t want to hurt his feelings,” Naomi said.
“How do soul mates communicate with each other?” I asked.
“Because they are meant to be together, they are completely honest with one another,” Naomi said.
“What if you were completely honest with Jeff?” I asked.
“I don’t want to fight ...” she began, then paused. “Part of the separation between us is that I have not been open with him. I am ashamed and can’t imagine telling him how I’ve been feeling ... all in an effort to not hurt him. While in the process, I’ve put an even larger gap between us. Maybe I don’t feel truly seen by him because I haven’t been real with him. Possibly, the entire idea of a soul mate has been a fantasy to help me stay safe, longing ... and sad.”
“How can you be real with Jeff?” I asked.
“Wow! That’s a big concept. I can’t just jump in and change 20 years of patterns with a statement like, ‘I feel sad because I want to find my soul mate and you aren’t it!’ Ouch!” she said.
“That does seem a bit strong,” I said. “What’s a good first step for you to take?”
“I’d like to journal my concepts about how I’d like to BE as a soul mate and see how that compares to how I AM in my relationship to Jeff. If I better understand my feelings I might feel more confident in being real with him.”
As Naomi left, she said, “Even though this will probably be disruptive to my marriage, it’s better than living with a constant sadness of wanting what I don’t have ... or possibly not truly seeing what I do have.”
She left with a sad determination in her voice. I knew this would be a tough, but meaningful growth step for her.
Coaching challenge: Whether you are in a relationship or not, if you have a vague concept of finding your soul mate, challenge yourself to be specific with what that means. If you are in a relationship, compare your ideas of how you could be an ideal soul mate to how you really are in your relationship. What is the difference, and how can you close the gap?