A lot of entrepreneurs want to know what it takes to attract a high quality romantic partner. In fact, I'm sure that anyone who is single reading this and actively looking for a relationship wants to know.
And why wouldn't you?
Standards are higher than they've ever been. A lot of this is due to the fact that we all believe that we are special. We all have this idea that we are destined for greatness, far more so than anyone else. It’s a cognitive distortion called the optimism bias -- and entrepreneurs have it in spades. We expect to be rich and powerful in our 20's, although for most people, this doesn't occur until their late 30's-40's. And above all else, we expect a partner who checks off all of our boxes.
So, before we go any further, I want you to let this sink in. If everyone believes they're special, then from a purely statistical standpoint, no one is special. It simply isn't possible. You do not deserve a perfect partner solely because you exist, nor because your company went public. This article is not about how to "bag a 10." This article is geared toward the people who have put in their work, have a slight inkling of who they are and are ready to meet someone whose lifestyle matches up well with their own.
Entrepreneurs lead a very hectic lifestyle, and their success comes from being able to juggle and outsource tasks while hopefully maintaining a balanced life. So, what do they look for in a potential mate?
Entrepreneurs tend to work odd hours and have trouble not working even when they're off the clock. Someone with a flexible schedule and a similar work routine makes it easier to create a viable partnership. If both partners can just decide they need a mini-vacation on a moments notice, or just take off on a Wednesday afternoon hike, it makes it easier to plan quality time. If your partner always has to put in a request for time off from their nine-to-five, it can put a damper on scheduling. This isn't to say that it's impossible to make things work, just more difficult.
It's not just spontaneous getaways that need flexibility. An entrepreneur’s partner has to understand that their partner may work an 11-hour day. They may have to break plans if something comes up. They may have to leave the country unexpectedly to deal with a work-issue. This can be stressful for a lot of people. But as long as both partners are making a conscious effort to carve out time for one another and not letting their romantic life fall behind their work life, they can cultivate a happy, balanced relationship.
The entrepreneurial lifestyle can be stressful and disheartening. Entrepreneurs need someone who is on their side. This is probably the most important bullet point. They need someone who believes in them.
There will be dark days when they wonder why they started this company in the first place, if they're on the right path, what they're going to do if it all goes up in smoke, and at that time, they'll need someone to cheer them on and reassure them that they know what they're doing. Healthy criticism is expected in a relationship. After all, if your partner can't tell you the truth, who can? But everyone needs a partner who believes in his or her dreams and goals.
If you find yourself overly critical of your partner's chosen path, that's a huge sign that they may not be the right fit for you.
Nothing is sexier than passion.
I often say that your partner can be your favorite anyone but they shouldn’t be your favorite anything. If you or your partner don’t have something they’re passionate about outside of the relationship, that can put a massive strain on the relationship. It doesn't even matter what their passion is. You can collect old antique bottle caps, as long as it keeps you busy and happy.
An entrepreneur doesn't want to feel guilty while their partner sits at home waiting for them. They generally need someone with the same motivated spirit as them. Whether it's work, a hobby or volunteer work, find a thing or multiple things that keep you occupied and passionate.
All of these traits are indicative of a happy, fulfilled person. And you can't portray these things without embodying them. That's the trick. Entrepreneurs don't need someone with a hot body and a nice car. And you can't sustainably buy your way into someone's heart.
You can only be the best version of yourself and see what comes back to you.