Love is such a beautiful thing.
The one, your soulmate, your better half, your life companion, your true love… There are many names to call them but it’s not easy to know who to bestow that title upon.
Words, however, do it no justice. Sometimes, even the most immaculate display of love can be made ordinary by fickle words. You probably won’t discover ‘the one’ because they stood in front of you going on and on about how much they love you. No, love is more than that. It’s in the little things that seem insignificant. Don’t let the numerous romantic comedies out there color your perception of love. I have never seen people stand under the rain, staring lovingly into each other’s eyes. If anyone has tried that lately, I’m sure the cold they caught was lesson enough for them to stop. 
Nevertheless, you need to be equipped with knowledge that’ll help you know whether or not you’ve met ‘the one,’ or if you’re in a toxic relationship. Here are surefire signs you’ve hit the jackpot.
1. They want you to be the best version of yourself
It’s great if they accept you for who you are, but it’s also important that they want more for you. They give you the right amount of push. They’re there to hold you when you fall and help you get back on your feet. It’s also pertinent to note that this push shouldn’t be unhealthy or toxic. Advice is only as good as the delivery. They should not be unnecessarily harsh or mean to you just to get their point across. They’ll do it lovingly and you’ll want to do much better. 
2. They accept you completely
Don’t get it twisted. Although they want you to be a better person, they do not want to change you into something you’re not. That’s why there’s courtship, a period to get to know each other and figure out if you can live with the peculiarities of the other person you’re in a relationship with. Everyone has those peculiarities. No one is perfect.
However, your one true love shouldn’t want you to do a complete 360° turn to become someone you can’t even recognize. They should love your wild side. You could have crazy ideas or dreams. You could be an adrenaline junkie. You could want to go bungee jumping from the top of the Royal Gorge Bridge, Colorado, and they’ll still adore you. They want you to be safe but not by ordering you to stop doing the things that make you happy. It’s okay if they’re not into the things you like, but you know you’ve got a keeper when they’re by your side supporting you just because they love you.
3. Embrace your differences
No two people are the same, not even identical twins. There are going to be differences between you. These could be cultural differences or just different opinions on various things. You know you’re with the right person when your opinion is just as valid as theirs regardless of the differences.
4. You can be your real self
For how long will you pretend to be someone you’re not just for someone to keep loving you? Not too long, that’s for sure. In a healthy relationship, the things that are yours should not be subsumed by the things that are theirs. That’s a sign of a toxic relationship and you need to move away from it, or else, you risk losing the essence of your true self.
5. You both should be able to work through things in a healthy way
Every relationship has its ups and downs. You will fight with each other about things as simple as leaving the toilet seat up to things as serious as where you want to live. Regardless of what the fight is about, you should be able to work through them without resorting to violence or saying things you’ll regret afterward. Neither of you should be scared of the other to the extent you can’t be honest. You shouldn’t end up giving up everything you want to avoid upsetting them. You both must have to make compromises for each other. It’s a sign of an unhealthy relationship if your voice can’t be heard in it.
6. Commitment from both parties
Commitment is invaluable to any healthy relationship. You want someone who is 100 percent into you and willing to stay for the long haul. Neither of you should feel lukewarm about your relationship. If you find someone who always puts in their best efforts to make the relationship healthy, happy, and smooth, then you just might have found ‘the one.’
7. You both are happy
This is such a no-brainer, right? Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem like many people understand that. They think being in an unhappy relationship is okay as long as they get brief periods of happiness. That is not right. In a healthy relationship with ‘the one’ who is meant for you, your friends and family notice you beaming all the time. They love you and they can’t help but be happy for you.
8. You are each other’s happy place
Adventure is exciting but what’s even more exciting is when you’re on it with ‘the one.’ You could be in a submersible at the bottom of the ocean, on a cruise ship somewhere in the Bahamas, or on a loveseat in your local park. Wherever, you’re crazily excited from the thought of being so close to the one you love.
9. You both have similar life goals
Again, it’s okay to be different. You can each have different tastes in ice cream, music, travel dreams, or career paths. But when the chips are down on things like whether or not you want to get married, have kids, where to spend the rest of your lives, you both would have to make sure you’re on the same page, otherwise someone is bound to get hurt in the long run.
10. They should be able to make you feel special
How can they be your one true love if they’re unable to make you feel special? It doesn’t have to be “boombox outside your window” special. You’re with ‘the one’ when the little things they do put a smile on your face and make you feel like the only girl (or boy) in the world.
11. You know
It’s cliché but it’s true. It is the typical response most people give when asked how they know they’re with the right person.
Kira Asatryan said, “As a relationship coach, I’ve worked with dating and engaged couples that are absolutely sure they want to get married — but couldn’t for the life of them tell you why. Of course, love is inherently hard to define and can be easily confused with lust, infatuation, or friendship. Maybe it shouldn’t be surprising that this question lingers.
Satisfaction, in its simplest terms, means that both partners are getting what they need from a relationship. It’s often the basis of that this-is-right feeling that men and women can sense but can’t communicate well. It’s one of the hallmarks of a romantic relationship that’s working.” 
People who said there’s no handbook on love sure got it right. Nevertheless, the above pointers should guide you in your decision-making.
Remember, love does not hurt. It’s not painful, it’s not toxic, it doesn’t hit you when you disagree, it doesn’t say mean things to you, and it doesn’t judge you or condemn you. ‘The one’ should go above and beyond for you. They’ll take your heart in theirs and become one with you.
Here’s to wishing you all the best as you search for your soulmate.
“The Right One Won’t Be Bothered By Your Flaws, Weirdness, And Your Overthinking Mind“, Curious Mind Magazine.
“10 Signs You Have Met “The One”. Bustle. April 2015.
“4 Ways to Figure Out If You’re With the Right Person or Not“, Psychology Today. March 2016.