What are your core values? What do you believe in? What is your passion? What are your goals in life? If you do not know the answers to these questions without referring to what your significant other would answer - you might not be ready to be in a relationship yet.
Mr. Right will believe in the same things you do. He will have the same core values you have. He will believe in what you believe in. He will encourage you to pursue your passion and he will support you as you go for your life's goals. You meet him that way, you don't meet him and change him to conform to your idea of Mr. Right. You don't change your life for him. You grow together, yes. You may need to compromise, yes. But not in the foundation of who your are and who he is - compromise on the little things like who gets the remote or what flavor of ice cream to get.
In the movie, Nights in Rodanthe, which just came out in DVD a few weeks ago - after both Richard Gere's character and Diane Lane's character fail in their relationships and their life's work they find each other. They admire each other and encourage each other to find themselves and mend the relationships that are important to them. In the time they are apart they write to each other, letters that help them get to know each other more and anticipate their reunion.
Meanwhile, separately they find themselves. They get their lives on track separately. They mend their broken relationships with their children. And though they are separate, they support and encourage each other through all they are going through as though they are together.
So the moral of the story? You have to be happy with yourself before you can be happy with someone else. You have to hold out for Mr. Right - and not settle for Mr. Right Now. And Nicholas Sparks movies always makes me cry - ok so that's a personal lesson for me.
It's a great movie - make your special someone watch it with you and have tissues ready.