Falling in Love for All the Right Reasons
""Book By: Dr. Neil Clark Warren
Applying the love algorithm
What's love got to do with technology? Reading Falling in Love is almost like reading a computer algorithm for finding a soul mate. It presents a logical, formulistic approach that is, against all odds, a powerfully compelling approach.
Let's face it. Finding "the one" has become a task of Matrix proportions. In these cynical times, it gets harder and harder to be swept off our feet. "The good news," writes author Dr. Neil Clark Warren in his introduction to the book, "is that thanks to modern technology you are more likely to discover your soul mate - that person with whom you share the most 'broad-based compatibility' - than ever before in the history of human relationships."
A host of quick fixes
Those words are heartening, but many recent writers have exploited the blessing for the short term. A rash of books seek to engineer great Saturday nights and quick meetings of minds (and more), but with little focus on traditional values. Dr. Warren sets his eyes on the long-term; his book is for people looking for great marriages that last.
The title recommends falling in love for the right reasons, but what are the wrong ones? Dr. Warren's list delivers a lesson in common sense: physical appearance, power, prestige, social status, wealth, and sexual chemistry. While he assures us these aspects are important (they are evaluated in the book), he stresses that they are "not a sufficient foundation on which to build a solid, long-term marriage."
The help structure
Dr. Warren's algorithmic approach makes sense when you consider that he is the founder of eHarmony.com - a highly successful matchmaking site. On the site, he describes 29 aspects of what he calls "dimensions of compatibility." These aren't used merely to evaluate the other person, but also to evaluate oneself. The first step towards a long-lasting relationship, emphasizes the book, is understanding the self.
Dr. Warren has arrived at his 29 dimensions over 35 years of counseling and psychotherapy experience. Divided into four parts, they form the bulk of the book. They begin on a sensible note, with the first group called The Screening Dimensions. Aspects such as anger management, family background, and even obstreperousness are to be considered when evaluating somebody for a potential relationship.
The second group considers the "core personal dimensions" taking in things such as intellect and sexual passion, but also less obvious points such as energy levels, artistic passion. and curiosity.
Hope for change
These are all hard-wired qualities, so the next two sections are a little more open-ended. They deal with skills and qualities that can be developed. Luckily, says Dr. Warren, the key problems areas in many relationships can be fixed: communication and conflict resolution. Interestingly, he also believes that kindness and adaptability can be learned and applied.
This gentle optimism keeps the book in balance. It is realistic without being dry, but hopeful without getting starry-eyed. With more marriages failing than succeeding, these are hard days for lasting love, so do consider taking up Dr. Warren on his offer of professional help.