Are you looking for a new relationship?

Where do you start to find the right partner?

Think of your quest for love as a real job. Just like when you finally got serious about a profession instead of just browsing the want ads, you have to commit to doing the work it takes to find a good partner.

Rule 1. Be seen in public. If you look for a partner in a bar, chances are much higher that you will find an alcoholic. You must be far more creative than that! Go for the hobbies and sports, religious events and charities, and the coffee houses and cafes. Take a book and plant yourself in the best lighting, smile and say "Hello" to everyone.

Rule 2. Imagine every detail about your perfect partner. Include what they wear, the places they frequent and the hobbies they enjoy. You should be able to literally draw the one for whom you are looking. We will certainly compromise on this later but for now get a picture of what qualities would truly make you happy in a great "catch." Test yourself to see your strengths and weaknesses in a relationship. Test.

Rule 3. Odds are that you will get your heart broken 99 times out of a hundred encounters with the opposite sex. (That percentage is how often encyclopedia salesman figure their sales pitch will be successful, and is probably not really useful here.) The point is if you cannot take the heartbreak of rejection then you cannot really play the game wholeheartedly. Count on a week of torturous crying and three months of feeling rotten for every affair that ends badly because you did not want to break up yet. Practical men may grieve far less than the romantic ladies.

Rule 4. Reach up, not down. No matter how many times you have failed at love reach up for your match, not lower. A lowlife will break your heart even faster than someone who appears a little out of your league. Read Matchlines: A Revolutionary New Way of Looking at Relationships and Making the Right Choices in Love ( to order) for help in selecting a proper partner.

Rule 5. See each interaction with another person, no matter how brief, as a success not a failure. Keeping a great relationship is the hardest job in the world. Practice, practice, practice.

©2009, Molly Barrow

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Dr. Molly Barrow holds a Ph.D. in clinical psychology and is the author of the new book, Matchlines: A revolutionary New Way of looking at relationships and making the right choices in love. She is an authority on relationship and psychological topics, a member of the American Psychological Association and a licensed mental health counselor. Dr. Molly has appeared as an expert on NBC, PBS, KTLA, and in O Magazine, Psychology Today, Newsday,,, Women's Health and Women's World. Please visit: or Take the new relationship compatibility test, Match Lines Systems for Successful Relationships for Singles, Couples and Business at Molly has a radio program, Your Relationship Answers at

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