Sunday, May 26, 2013

The Magic of Great Relationships

“I think it's basically magic. There is such a thing as magic, and the Beatles were magic.”
 --  Paul McCartney, in a Rolling Stone interview, 2007

How is it that some relationships are like seeds that never sprout, some are like seedlings that die before really taking root, and some grow and flourish to produce an abundant harvest of love?

It’s basically magic. How else do you explain it?

That’s the way Paul McCartney explained why the Beatles’ music continues to speak to people after all these years. He didn’t say “we wrote great songs” or “we were good and we got lucky” or anything specific. He just said it was magic.

I think Paul McCartneyis right. There are times when magic takes over, and there’s no way to explain it logically. It happened with the Beatles. And sometimes it happens when two people meet each other.

I know this is true in relationships, because it happened to me.

When I was middle-aged, single and actively dating, there were times when I wondered why I was going on so many dates. Why was it taking so long to meet the right woman? Why was the process taking so long? What was I doing wrong? Where was the magic?

I had gotten really good at dating. I had mastered the fine art of the First Date, during which I would be witty and charming as I told funny stories that illustrated the highlights of my life. But in the 1.7 million first dates that I went on, there was precious little magic.

At first I thought I wasn’t trying hard enough. So I tried harder. I went out on more dates, and I learned even more about what women want in a man and how to present myself as that kind of man. (And I developed a list of Babe Magnet Rules to prove it.) Sometimes I got a little glimpse of magic, but it quickly (in a manner of days or weeks) vanished like a mirage in the desert.

A friend of mine thinks he may have found his magic. He and his lady have been together for many months, and their relationship continues to grow. From when I stand, it looks quite magical.

Another friend of mine, who I will call Asilla, has been dating a man for a couple of months. Whenever I watch them when they are together, he looks like a man who has found relationship magic, but she’s not so sure. So unless Asilla thinks there is magic in the relationship, there won’t be any magic for either of them. Relationship magic only happens when both parties feel it and embrace it.

So even though I wrote a book about dating and relationships—a book that’s packed full of practical advice about how to be the most attractive and desirable man or woman you can be, I still can’t offer much advice about how you can find magic.

But I do know this: you have to be open to the magic when it does come. If you’re shut down emotionally or if you’re simply not ready to embrace it, you’re not going to recognize relationship magic when it starts to bloom. You’ll walk away and wonder why the magic of love never arrives in your life.

Chad Stone
Author of Confessions of a Middle-Aged Babe Magnet