Find a Partner Who Softens Your Edges


I tell my partner, Tim, that he’s got dad jokes. Much of his humor is found upon the following: stating the obvious, making cheesy references (usually to 80’s pop culture), or relying on the good ol’ fashioned pun. On the list of things that I love about Tim, the fact that he makes me laugh is pretty high up. Just when I start to get too serious, reviewing lists of things I need to get done, or considering all the reasons why we’ll never make it some place on time, he will make an offhanded comment about a squirrel that makes me smile. It’s hard to be too serious around Tim.

While the world would suggest that you find a partner with a nice jawline, a 401K, and evidence of a certain amount of success, such as degrees, a fat salary, or an esteemed title, the truth is that your perfect match isn’t the person with great health insurance; your ideal partner is the person who softens your edges, or in other words, who lightens your spirit.

It can be all too easy to get stuck in your head, as every moment can feel harried and busy, with things to get done and places to go. You make hundreds, if not thousands of decisions a day, using reason and logic. It is natural to try to approach dating with that same mindset, creating a list of must-haves for potential partners and pursuing dating the way someone might look to fill a position by seeking out a job applicant who meets a long list of criteria.

Here’s the key: We all have parts of our personality that are light, even child-like. We can tap into feelings of wonder, creativity, and the desire to play. Your perfect match will elicit the part of you that trusts and is willing to let go. If you’re a perfectionist, your perfect match will embrace your wild, messy side. If you get stressed easily, your perfect match will help you to relax and loosen up.


The foundation for an emotionally (and spiritually) mature relationship is not what the world would suggest: pretty eyes and good health insurance. Sure, those things are bonuses; but what gives a relationship its legs is when two people who soften each other’s hard places come together and grow. They become the people they were meant to be by eliciting the best from each other.

When you shift how you determine what makes for a great partner, you will find that you start dating people who you might have otherwise overlooked. You will step out of your comfort zones and become more clear on the attributes that your ideal partner can possess that will help to create more levity and softness in your life. You will find yourself attracted to someone who you may not have expected to fit your “type”. Your dating life will shift, and as a result, you will shift. Your edges will soften; your heart will open, and it will be a result of your choosing a partner using different guidelines than those you’ve been accustomed to in the past.