Are you looking for that perfect relationship, or is your relationship not quite as perfect as you want it to be?

That's because our intimate relationships are mostly based on fantasy -- a subconscious, idealized image, and a belief that a partner that matches this fantasy image will bring us bliss and fulfillment. As a coach, I constantly find myself working with clients wanting to attract a “soulmate” with a long list of attributes and qualities that somehow define the prospective lover as their “type.” It is a rare client that actually questions why they think this list of characteristics is important.

Occasionally, through the mysterious workings of the Law of Attraction, we do meet someone who matches that list, and we match their ideal, conscious or unconscious. Of course, we experience the excitement and thrill of falling in love and lust, and think it will last forever. Then, inevitably, gaps in the ideal appear, because no real person can live up to our unconsciously developed fantasies. This is the ego dance.

This is the point where there is an opportunity to be real, to create an authentic relationship. Most of us, though, preferring fantasies to reality, end the relationship, or stay in it, but with an undercurrent of dissatisfaction. Authentic and fulfilling relationship, however, lies in engaging fully with and loving the real person, not with desiring a mental image that can never provide what you are looking for.

As consciousness in physical form, we have two fundamental desires - to become ourselves, a whole individual living and expressing our divine potential, and to be in deep contact with source, with life, and with each other. Intimate relationship is the fire in which both these aspects, the masculine and feminine, emerge and are refined. This development requires the willingness to be present, to be open- mind, heart, body and soul- and to surrender to love itself. This is the soul dance.

So, how do we move from the ego dance to the soul dance? That requires that we understand what makes relationships work, why they fail so often, and how to consciously attract relationships that will grow with us.

In this process, we need to:

• Experience and integrate the understanding that the real purpose of relationships is for our souls to evolve and know themselves, not for our egos to fulfill their fantasies.
• Create a level of self awareness regarding our beliefs about the ideal relationship, and realize how they are a source of self defeating frustration.
• Understand that no one can complete us, and that the Law of Attraction, far from attracting this idealized mate, actually, brings us partners who reflect back our beliefs about our perceived deficiencies, and help you see our own growth paths.
• See the masculine-feminine dance in love, recognize that we all have both aspects of consciousness within us, develop both polarities, and embrace either as the moment demands.
• Realize that what we really yearn for is deep connection with other human beings and with our being, and to be present and real in a way that allows our hearts to both authentically touch and be touched.
• Attract and choose a partner who will play with us at the depth that we are willing and able to play.

These are the steps of the soul dance. In contrast, the steps of the ego dance look like this:

• Stay stuck in your unconscious beliefs about the “ideal” relationship, and who you are and who your partner is supposed to be.
• Keep wanting that ideal, without questioning it, and get disappointed when reality does not match fantasy.
• Project your own sense of deficiency on your partner, expect them to somehow complete you, make them responsible for your happiness and refuse to take charge of your own growth.
• Stay stuck in rigid gender identities, with our unconscious beliefs and judgments about how the other sex “is.”
• Continue to protect our ideas about ourselves, presenting only our idealized selves to our partners, and insisting that they be only who we want them to be.
• Attract and choose partners who conform to our fantasy, and then live in disappointment when the fantasy does not result in the bliss we were expecting.

Changing the steps of your relationship dance is not easy, but the rewards are immense. Lara is a divorced mother of two, in a relationship again after a long marriage based on the normal ego dance. Now, in her own words, she is in a soul dance: “I feel like I know myself so much more intimately. I feel empowered now because I know the things that my heart is longing for are real and I can experience true connection and still be fully myself. I feel a sense of peace and inner knowing regarding my current and future relationships. I always feared that my life would be full of longing for that "right" relationship for me but that it would always evade me somehow. Now, I know I'm on the right path and positioned perfectly for every intimate connection that unfolds. I am much clearer about what I want to experience and because of this there isn't as much fear about showing someone who I really am. I have always been afraid of sharing the deep things - would that other person ever truly "hear" me? I discovered in the workshop that I must first hear myself and then be open to giving someone the opportunity to hear me. Being able to hear myself is the cake and being heard by another is the icing. Since the workshop I've delved into conversations with my boyfriend that I would have never dared before. I'm not sure what's happening - but it feels like he hears every word deeply and values these moments. And I wonder-is it really me that is now able to hear every word deeply and able to value every moment for exactly what it is, without judgment or fear?”

Relationships, like life, are a development process and practice, not an ideal to live up to. Recognizing that, and understanding that authentic partnerships have to be consciously created, and do not just appear because you find the “one right mate,” provides the framework in which you can engage in the soul dance.

Author's Bio: 

Sunil Ahuja is a transformational workshop leader and developmental coach. He is certified to lead the Avatar® Course and the Chopra Center's Seven Laws for Engaging Spirit in the Workplace, as a Developmental Coach by the Interdevelopmental Institute in Boston, Massachusetts, and in Spiral Dynamics and Spiritual Intelligence Assessment.

In 2001, Sunil founded Integral Transformational Systems, a company offering personal development training, consulting and coaching. ITS offers program integrating ancient knowledge of consciousness with modern methods of accessing that level of being. All its programs and services are designed to expedite the emergence of human consciousness into higher stages of development, and to assist individuals in realizing their full potential. More details at