Many women seek counsel from friends, therapists, and dating coaches when they’re feeling despair over their love lives. They say they’re struggling to find “The One.” They believe they’re missing that special person in their lives, the one with whom they’ll have a deep connection and a spark. Often they think they need a matchmaker or a makeover.

Sometimes that’s true. Sometimes women only need to make a few external tweaks. Or maybe the divine timing’s off and their special person just hasn’t shown up yet. Other times, however, women may need to go to the “spiritual gym” for an inner workout.

One of the key aspects of winning the inner game is women getting crystal-clear on what they want. When they are absolutely clear on the desired outcome, they have a better chance at manifesting it. If they can think it, it exists.

There are several reasons clarity is a powerful tool in finding love. First, when women are clear on what they want, they get excited about their goal. Picturing the ideal lover on an ideal day can be thrilling and gives renewed hope that person exists. When searching for their soulmate, women shouldfeel hopeful. In fact, it’s crucial to feel optimistic. It’s harder to find love when you’re in a low-vibe, wishy-washy space.

Clarity also leads to confidence. When women are very clear on what they want, it’s easier to build a roadmap to get there. When they’re no longer confused about what they want, their day-to-day actions are filled with a purpose.

Finding clarity on the ideal mate can also illuminate hidden fears and blocks. This is where we mine gold. These hidden obstacles are often blocking women from finding the ideal partner. For example, a woman who has been cheated on in the past may fear she’ll get cheated on again. She subconsciously may fear getting involved in another relationship, due to the turmoil she experienced the last time. Because of these fears, she may avoid singles-oriented events and forego online dating, which greatly lessens the chance of meeting her soulmate.

Everyone’s blocks are different. Some struggle with a fear of betrayal. Others fear losing independence or having to compromise. Or they could be concerned about merging families. Uncovering and facing these hidden fears is half the battle. Once identified, women can start the process of working to get rid of them, sometimes with the help of a therapist or dating coach. Many times, people aren’t consciously aware of their fears until a professional helps them do the juicy work of feeling their ideal lover into existence.

There are many tools you can use to get one step closer to your dream relationship. Vision boards—either digital or on poster board—can be a fun and useful way to get clarity about your dreams. So can visualization exercises. It’s possible to feel so good about this new clarity, women may find themselves dreaming more—while sleeping—about their ideal mate. These exercises also can help in identifying worries and blocks. Some women put together amazing vision boards that give them goosebumps, yet they also confess to fearing their vision won’t come true.

Journaling through worries and fears can help; journal about why you deserve a great relationship and why you’re worthy. If anything negative comes up, re-write the negative in a positive way. Don’t bury the pain, but after feeling the feeling, reframe it. For example, rather than fearing a cheating partner, rewrite the thought as: “My next lover will be faithful and loving.”

Other tools include forgiveness and gratitude. Forgiveness often helps people leapfrog ahead, releasing blocks. Forgiveness doesn’t mean letting the person who hurt you back into your life. But it means you forgive so anger loses its grip, allowing yourself to heal.

Gratitude is another helpful, clarifying practice that can be incorporated into daily life, by writing a gratitude list each morning. When people are filled with gratitude, they see the glass half full instead of half empty. They see an abundance of good partners out there rather than thinking there’s no one out there for them. When you visualize sunny and positive possibilities, you’re more likely to manifest a sunny and positive outcome.

Get started right now with this quick exercise: What are 10 gratitudes related to your dating life you can think of right now? Write them down. The list can include items like: “Even though I’m reeling from a breakup, I’m glad I weeded out a horrible match,” or “I’m lucky I live in an area where I can meet single people,” or “Thank goodness for dating apps:Where else can I meet so many single people while never leaving the house?”

Don’t you feel better already?

Karenna Alexander is a dating coach based in Connecticut. She helps smart successful women weed out time-wasters and find lasting love. Connect at CoachKarenna@KarennaAlexander.comor

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